Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Downtown Photography, the Farmers Market and artists, Downtown Safety, Multicultural Center of the South, Grants

By Loren Demerath

In attendance: Sue Stella, April Waren, Susan Fontaine, Jamie Heiges, Michael Lott, Maurice Loridans, Robert Trudeau, Kathryn Usher, Loren Demerath, Garrett Johnson.

The meeting began with two newcomers, Jaimie Heiges and Michael Lott introducing themselves, interrupted by enthusiastic conversation about their interests could help further a better Shreveport.

Jaimie's a photographer who recently graduated from U.L. She is photographing old buidings downtown. ABS wants to raise awareness of the beauty downtown and photography would raise awareness. The group discussed various downtown scenes (April mentioned purposely traveling one route to see the "Hope is a dead end street" sign). It was noted it might help people see the possibilities of living downtown to show downtown living spaces as part of Jaimie and Michael's documenting project. Could show interiors of spaces, without revealing addresses, then faces and profiles of people who'd be your neighbors. Adam Causey is a source of links and ideas as well; has talked with Michael and pointed him to the Shreveport Historical Society who in turn directed him to important buildings.

Michael has also been here just a year; works in the oil and gas industry; worked previously in non-profit administration for a brain injury rehabilitation clinic; was a psychology major. Michael lives downtown. He likes it because he can walk everywhere (he walks to the Robinson Film Center mainly). April noted she'd like to live downtown but has a pet, and many downtown apartments don't allow animals. Micheal noted there's a high occupancy rate in apartments. (It was noted that the Fairmont is a cool space with cool owners; the pool isn't open, though it's been redone).


April noted that she mentioned to the Caddo Federation of Teachers about the Farmers Market and integrating artists. Jackie Lansdale of the CFT (leader) keeps the school board in line with regard to education policy and teachers; her daughter Joanne Maguire, lived in Oregon and knows about bike-ped issues and might be a good ally to ABS.

The group then reviewed a letter it plans to send to the administrators of the Farmers Market suggesting some ways an artists market might be located nearby.

During the discussion it was noted the only problem with the previous position of the artists being located by the building the market patrons view of them; it seemed like only 10% made it to the artists. Michael Corbin runs the Barnwell, and it was said that although he has a lot of good ideas, there is not a carnival atmosphere drawing people down there. It was also said that there hadn't been any signage pointing people at the Farmers Market to the Artists Market at the Barnwell. Thoughts of how to make it more appealing ranged from jugglers, to ice cream trucks, even to re-enactments.

Some noted that the city has a big drama core in the city that would be willing, as well as a big Society for Creative Anachronisms crowd as well. Could program it and be a bus stop destination for people to come from Texas.


Susan said she works at edwards and travis, but parks down the street, A 15 minute walk away north of the municipal auditorium on douglas; people have told her she can't park there because of safety. Makes her sad that people think they can't walk there. A couple of homeless folks do live in the greenspace adjacent to Sprague St.; Susan's been approached a couple of times but handled it o.k.; she's lived in New Orleans and is used to being aware and handling that sort of thing.


It was said the new multicultural center of the south at 520 Spring St. is much nicer than the last location. Sue is showing an exhibit on a pre, during, and post Katrina photographs starting August 28th, the night before the anniversary of Katrina.


Some talked of another work session this Friday at CoHabitat.

Others (and some of the same!) talked of a hooping and drum session from 6 to 8 pm at the disc golf course on Clyde Fant. It was said Katie Rubben is an awesome hooper who's organizing it -- but it's unofficial.


From ( "Focus Roots Fellowships to support stand-out student and young adult applicants with $10,000 grants to demonstrate clean energy innovation in the name of powering their community past coal." Discussed briefly as something to pursue, particularly to help fund anyone who could use it to work full-time on bike-ped or public transit issues in town. Could it be used to leverage other funds, such as to match funds from other grants to pay for a full salary?


Carolyn via cell phone noted that Feico was there Friday to help with writing; Stephanie had asked about membership; $5 is currently membership, but Carolyn suggested increasing it to $20 (though $5 student) and all agreed; Feico's willing to take over from Ian for treasurer duties if he wants to hand them off.


The next meeting was set for the following Monday. In the meantime, the Farmers Market letter will be sent out with revisions, and we will seek to have the letters soliciting paint for sharrows signed and distributed. Work on PSA's, and bus service improvements will also proceed.


Anonymous said...

There was a sign pointing to the Barnwell's market, by the way, until about Week 4 when the sign blew over and broke. It was done by the Farmers' Market market on the computer, as one had not arrived from elsewhere. It featured a map of the whole area and suggesting a morning walking tour.

Pan's Pantry said...

When the aforementioned sign could no longer be posted, the Barnwell sent one that was lovely -- but within a week, the information was incorrect, as they went from weekly to monthly. (I've been out of town but have received no message correcting that. I simply heard it through the grapvine. If it is still open weekly, please call me at 455-5788 and I'll put it back up.)

The Voice said...