Wednesday, August 25, 2010

PPL and Feet First at 1st Thursday Art Walk

And guess what we'll be doing? That's right, promoting Park(ing) Day.

Thursday, September 2nd, we will be setting up in a vacant storefront at the corner of 7th and Jackson in the International District, thanks to Christa Thomas of the brite collective and WKND, one of the artists selected by the Seattle Storefronts program to set up shop in a vacant space.

We will be setting up a PARK similar to those which people will build on Park(ing) Day and make a push to sign up more participants.

Why, one might wonder, are we going to promote an event that is, in part, centered in Capitol Hill, in the I.D.? For one, the I.D. is lacking in open space and is on the verge of making a move to increase it. A recent pro-parks levy has provided funding to expand Hing Hay Park into the area now occupied by the former post office. Secondly, with increasing interest in redeveloping the southern portion of the city into an area with parks, green streets, and mixed-use housing, now is an opportune time to try and reach out to the community to ensure that their voices are heard when designs come into being. Since Park(ing) Day is all about community engagement, Christa and some of her associates, like Nin Truong, hope to use the opportunity to connect with neighborhood residents.

To do this, the plan is to help promote Park(ing) Day all around the city, to provide a space to show how small groups envision parks, and to do a follow-up Park(ing) Day event on Saturday, September 18th. Christa has also graciously offered to have the winners of the citywide best park competition set up there work in her storefront for a month or so after the event (here are all the winners from last year).

[grand prize winning park from last year, photo by Signal to Noise]

And this is just a hint at the extent of potential Park(ing) Day festivities for 2010. An event for the evening of Friday, September 17th is being discussed with the good people from Streets for All Seattle. Check back early next week for more information.

All of this notwithstanding, the major part of Park(ing) Day is community participation, so if you'd like to build your own miniature park, download the registration form and get to designing!

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