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Mary Von Lortz, an instructor and the proprietor of Mary’s Art Classes and Von Lortz Sidestreet Gallery, will be retiring at the end of the year, as she’s sold her San Clemente business.

On Dec. 23, from 6-9 p.m., Von Lortz will host a “Farewell Miss Mary” retirement party at her Avenida Cabrillo studio, and is inviting the community to attend.

“Fondly known as ‘Miss Mary’ to two generations of San Clemente children and their parents, she will be having her last day of instruction on Dec. 23,” a press release announcing Von Lortz’s retirement said. “Come and share your memories and wish her well in retirement.”

Von Lortz, the release explained, acquired the studio in 1998 from Maria Hanxleden, who ran the space as an art instruction studio. The new owner, Claire Kavaya, will commence operations, continuing to run it as an art instruction studio, on Jan. 1.

“For 23 years, Mary Von Lortz has instructed students of all ages, attracting a clientele from well beyond San Clemente. Yet, it is the people of San Clemente to whom she expresses her gratitude for their years of support,” the release said.

Though she’ll be retiring, Von Lortz, an accomplished professional artist who sold her original works at the Sidestreet Gallery, will continue her career in the field, the release explained.

Over the years, Von Lortz has provided a free booth for children to make art and receive face paintings at many arts and crafts fairs in San Clemente.

“She leaves a legacy of her GridArt instructing product and maintaining a center for art in this community while guiding students to mastery in oil painting,” the release said.

Von Lortz’s farewell party on Dec. 23 will be held at her gallery at 205 Avenida Cabrillo. For more information about the event, contact Layne Jace Fant at 949.444.6674.

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