Posts Tagged ‘ Event ’

Harvest Festival

Harvest Festival

On Saturday, October 23, residents and volunteers gathered at the Rondo Victoria Peace Garden, located at Concordia Avenue and Victoria Street, to celebrate the hard work they did this summer on the new community garden. There were pumpkins to be carved, cider to be sipped, and plans to be discussed on this quiet fall day.

In June, the garden first opened with a peace pole dedication as the kick-off to Aurora/St. Anthony NDC’s Summer of Peace celebrations. On Saturday, the garden was put to bed as folks cleaned, raked and prepared for the future. This ending also was a beginning as the group planted garlic sent to St. Paul from AfroEco — a group out of Detroit, Mich., focusing on urban community gardens. The bulbs that had traveled all the way from the Motor City were aptly named Motown Garlic.

All summer long, the owners of the lot had asked residents the question, “How would you use the space?” The top answers were revealed at the Harvest Festival and included:

  • Meditating/thinking
  • Vegetable garden
  • Flower garden
  • Neighborhood events

Future conceptual plans were also shared for the garden, with landscape design ideas including mixed planting beds, apple, cherry and plum trees, plus a sitting area with benches.

With the burst in popularity of community gardens — a wonderful way to bring residents together — the Rondo Victoria Peace Garden is a very welcome addition to the neighborhood. It will be very exciting to see what the future holds.

Check out the other photos from the Harvest Festival in our Flickr photostream here:

http://www.flickr.com/apps/slideshow/show.swf?v=71649

Storyteller Festival

National Association of Black Storytellers

Photo courtesy of National Association of Black Storytellers


Minneapolis will be the center of the Black Storytelling world November 17 – 21, when the National Association of Black Storytellers and the Black Storytellers’ Alliance present the 28th “In the Tradition…” Annual National Black Storytelling Festival and Conference at The Minneapolis Marriott City Center and throughout the Twin Cities community.

This year’s theme, in honor of their Ancestors and traditions, will proclaim “Our Stories Are The Breath of Life!”

The National Association of Black Storytellers is proud to present this one-of-a-kind event for the first time in Minnesota. The Twin Cities public and attendees from all over the country are invited and encouraged to participate and attend.

The first “In the Tradition…” A Festival of Black Storytelling was held at Morgan State University in Baltimore in 1983. Since then the Festival and Conference has traveled around the nation.

For a schedule and ticket information, visit the National Association of Black Storytellers web site.

Summer of Peace

At peace pole

Community elder, Ms. Bertha Givins, and Dan Kravetz, who came up with the idea for Summer of Peace two years ago.

For the third straight year, the Aurora/St. Anthony Neighborhood Development Corporation, partnering with the Summit-University Planning Council and District 7 Planning Council, co-hosted The Summer of Peace celebration, a series of events that was the brain child of former ASANDC staffer Dan Kravetz. This “traveling block party” with events happening each Thursday, provided an opportunity for neighbors to get to know each other and participate in activities benefitting the entire community. Thursday events included clean-up efforts, community gardening, live entertainment, cook-outs and the general spreading of goodwill and summer cheer.

We spoke with Irna Landrum, Executive Director of the Summit-University Planning Council, who shared some highlights from the Summer of Peace.

How did it go? It seemed like there was such a good feel to the events.

It definitely was a success, bigger than what we had done before, a bit overwhelming, but it went very well. We tried to do it a little differently, in the past it was more about getting out, seeing people and giving them information — more of a here’s where you go, here’s what you do, the food is over there kind of thing. We wanted it to be more interactive and thought it would be more successful if people could contribute and be engaged.

What were some of your favorite events?

The kickoff event was phenomenal. It was held on a vacant lot on Victoria and Concordia that had an interesting story: On that corner was a really dilapidated home. The neighbors wanted to buy and rehab it but that didn’t work out and the home was demolished. But they were able to buy the lot and wanted it to be an asset to the community. So we held the kickoff event there and did a peace pole planting and worked with a landscape designer, neighbors brought seeds and plantlings and we did a small vegetable garden right in the middle of the lot. Police officers, political candidates from the district, and lots and lots of neighbors came out to the party. It was just so awesome. The owners wanted everyone involved and asked for ideas about what could be done with the lot — they made a list: What I like to see is… and people voted.
Another great event was the forum in July with candidates from the Minnesota House of Representatives District 65A. When people start talking about politics it is easy to discount this neighborhood — people don’t turn out to vote — it seems easy to count out a community like ours. But that night we set out 50 chairs and we had to get more — nearly 60 people came out to ask the candidates questions. That was really rewarding

Also, we had a block party on Fuller Avenue at Chatsworth and Milton. We work with a group called Hearts and Hammers who help elderly and disabled homeowners rehab their houses. At that point Hearts and Hammers had done five houses on that block — now it’s up to seven.

How rewarding to see all that progress in one place.

It really was. And there was one event that just SWELLED. It started with an idea — our community organizer met this neighbor who drums, he plays the bongos and congas, and she asked if he would lead a drum circle. He said sure and then spread the word to his friends. It turned into multiple drummers, a stage and sound systems, it became a little block concert. It was a bit overwhelming, but all the neighbors had so much fun. And the original neighbor said he needed some work done on his house, and I handed him a Hearts and Hammers brochure and they ended up doing work on his house. It all fits together.

What do you see for the future? I mean after you rest up from this!

There are three community gardens all along Victoria Street in several different neighborhoods. We want to see what kind of community identity we can build along Victoria. It seems like some of the physical barriers are really big psychological barriers — the neighborhoods are very different, but it will be good to focus on what we have in common.

It seems we need a fresh perspective, it is easy to say, “Here are the challenges and difficulties,” but it is good to hear a fresh perspective of, “This is what’s beautiful!”

Sustainable Development Events

Central Corridor light rail station rendering

From St. Paul City Council Member Russ Stark:

I’d like to invite you to an upcoming visit to Saint Paul by Brian Coleman from the Greenpoint Manufacturing and Design Center in Brooklyn, NY. He will be coming to share his experiences and insights on providing space for small manufacturing enterprises, artisans, and artists. GMDC currently owns and manages five rehabilitated properties occupied by more than 100 businesses that employ more than 500 people.

There will be two events on Thursday, November 4, that are open to the public — one a working lunch and the other an evening session.

University United, Public Art Saint Paul, the Saint Paul Port Authority, the Asian Economic Development Association, and the Midway Chamber, and I have put up funds that will be matched by the Central Corridor Funders Collaborative to make this visit possible. The topic to be discussed dovetails with the current efforts of the West Midway Study and Creative Enterprise Zone Study (University and Raymond area), as well as larger city-wide economic development conversations.

For more information and to register for the November 4 lunch, please click here. Please register soon, as space is limited

If you plan to attend the evening session on November 4, please go here for more information and to RSVP.

Thank you for your interest, and I look forward to this upcoming opportunity for dialogue about the Greenpoint model and similar possibilities for our local economy. I hope you can join us.

Questions? Contact:

Samantha Henningson
Councilmember Russ Stark’s Office
Email
(65) 266-8641

Building a Federal Infrastructure for Nonprofits

Please join the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits, the Minnesota Council on Foundations and special guest Congresswoman Betty McCollum for a conversation about the Nonprofit Sector and Community Solutions Act on October 14 at “Building a Federal Infrastructure for Nonprofit Organizations” in St. Paul.

Despite the importance of the nonprofit sector to the U.S. economy and to the success of many policy initiatives, no federal body has responsibility for promoting or building the capacity of the nonprofit sector, or for collecting data on nonprofits. The Nonprofit Sector and Community Solutions Act (H.R. 5533) is intended to make the federal government a more productive partner with nonprofit organizations by improving communication and coordination within government and enhancing knowledge about the sector.

Minnesota nonprofits have a unique opportunity to learn about and engage with the chief author of this initiative on October 14. Join special guest Rep. Betty McCollum (4th Congressional District, MN) and a panel of nonprofit leaders to discuss the bill and provide feedback on how this opportunity can advance the interests of Minnesota and U.S. nonprofits.

Date: Thursday, October 14
Time: 1:00 p.m.– 2:30 p.m.
Location: Neighborhood House, 179 Robie Street East, Saint Paul 55107-2360
Fee: Free, but please RSVP
RSVP: Register online now and select “RSVP for Free Events, Briefings and Convenings.”

Read a summary of the Nonprofit Sector and Community Solutions Act.

Ujima Teen Summit

You are invited to take part in UJIMA’s 6th Annual Healthy Relationship Summit (Minnesota Summit on Sexuality), Saturday, October 23, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. at Camphor Memorial United Methodist Church, 585 Fuller Avenue, St. Paul. Our theme for this event is “Behold I Do a New Thing.” This is an exciting opportunity for our young people as well as parents and other caring adults to participate in open and honest dialogue, and interactive workshops on issues facing our young people and their families.

This 6th Annual Healthy Relationship Summit is for youth grades 7-12th and adults who care about them. Workshops will include teen sessions on topics such as media influence, STD’s, self esteem and more. Adult workshops will give an overview of Keep It Real! teen sexuality curriculum, Breaking the Silence, and Good Samaritan: HIV/AIDS Ministry Capacity Building facilitated by certified professional trainers from around the nation.

The registration booklet (to download it, click on the image at left) provides details and logistical information about the day. Summit participants will receive a complimentary continental breakfast (8:15-9 a.m.) and lunch.

Following lunch, the Summit will conclude with a fun and entertaining Talent Showcase featuring Steppers for Christ, teen recording artist KJ, and Deliverance for Youth Gospel Choir.

Early registration is appreciated. You may register via email or U.S mail as indicated on the registration form. If you have any questions or desire additional information, please contact Juliet Mitchell by email or by phone at (651) 330-1050.

Youth Event Reminder