Hi. I hope that you're having a wonderful holiday season. My blog has moved to Culture Tantrum, so please feel free to visit me there.
Hi. I hope that you're having a wonderful holiday season. My blog has moved to Culture Tantrum, so please feel free to visit me there.
The Johnstone Fund for New Music, in partnership with Sunday at Central and Short North Stage, recently joined forces to create “New Music Salon at Short North Stage,” a free contemporary classical music series at the Garden Theater in the Short North.
For the opening performance on October 23 at 7:30 p.m., violinist David Niwa (Artistic Director, Sunday at Central); violinist Olev Viro @Columbus Symphony); violist Ken Matsuda (Columbus Symphony); violist Belinda Reuning Burge (Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra); cellist Luis Biava (Columbus Symphony); and cellist Michael Carrera (Professor of Cello, Ohio University) will perform Arnold Schoenberg’s Transfigured Night (Verklärte Nacht, 1899). The musicians also will perform Pulitzer-Prize-winning American composer Charles Wuorinen’s String Sextet (1989).
“As we look into the uncertainty of a new century, these two great 20th century works for string sextet show how connected we are to the past,” said Zoe Johnstone, co-founder of the Johnstone Fund for New Music.
The October 23 concert coincides with Short North Stage’s production of the Stephen Sondheim/James Lapine Pulitzer-Prize-winning musical Sunday in the Park with George, which is based on Georges Seurat’s painting “Sunday on the Island of the Grande Jatte.” Both Transfigured Night and “Sunday on the Island of the Grande Jatte” were completed at the end of the 19th century as romanticism in the arts gave way to the modern era.
“The Garden Theater was built in 1920 specifically for live music performance,” said Short North Stage board president Peter Yockel. “These concerts help bring the theater back to its original purpose.”
The series continues in 2014 with free concerts on February 19 and June 4.
These free movie nights are held on a 30-foot screen at the park’s softball diamond. Each film starts at sundown and is preceded by costume and trivia contests with prizes from local businesses. Back to the Future will be emceed by Tim Fulton, and Nina West will emcee Mean Girls and Despicable Me.
A variety of food trucks and carts will sell refreshments, including Green Meanie Food Truck, Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams, Pattycake Bakery, Short North Bagel Deli, and Swoop! Food Truck. Guests are encouraged to bring blankets, lawn chairs, and flashlights. There are no rain dates.
The 5th annual Goodale Park Music Series kicks off in July with these Columbus performing acts:
July 14: Forest & the Evergreens
July 28: Angela Perley & the Howlin’ Moons
August 4: The Spikedrivers
August 11: Way Yes
August 18: The DewDroppers
August 25: Eric Nassau and Friends
Rain date: September 1
All shows take place at the Goodale Park gazebo from 12:30 to 2:00 p.m. The series is made possible with generous support from theShort North Foundation, Short North Civic Association, Columbus Recreation & Parks, ComFest,Friends of Goodale Park, and Italian Village Society. Click here for photos of past concerts.
Live Art: A rotating group of artists will create live art throughout the series, including Adam Brouillette, Andrew Lundberg, Fresh A.I.R. Gallery, Michael Quinn, Sara Adrian, TRANSIT Arts, and Urban Scrawl.
Vendors: Participating vendors include 2-Headed Monster Comics, Accessorize Your Accessories,alison rose, Badala, Candle with a Cause, HOMAGE, Sweet Simpliciteas, Todd Beistel (The Horror Show), and What The Rock?
Sound Engineering: Above Sound
Check-In Partner: Yelp Columbus
Until recently, I didn’t believe it was possible to hold a letter that George Washington wrote in 1788. Or flip through a 15th-century medieval manuscript. I definitely didn’t think I could do so less than a mile from home. But thanks to a friend, I discovered an endless world of history and possibility at the State Library of Ohio.
The State Library was founded in Columbus in 1817 and provides a dizzying amount of free services for Ohio residents, libraries, and state employees. Located in the historic Jeffrey Manufacturing Building in Italian Village, it offers a statewide resource sharing service to more than 500 libraries. Its catalog contains more than 800,000 items.
“We can impact just about everyone in Ohio,” said Marsha McDevitt-Stredney, the State Library’s Director of Marketing and Communications.
The State Library is the only regional federal repository in Ohio. You can access federal government information for free, including congressional records, executive branch documents, census statistics, house and senate journals, topographical maps, atlases, and U.S. patents. On the state level, you can explore rosters of Ohio soldiers from the Civil War, Spanish-American War, and World War I; Laws of Ohio from 1803; agricultural reports (including history of Ohio State Fairs); Ohio Supreme Court decisions; and election statistics.
You can also get suggestions from librarians about what to read; access digital audiobooks, eBooks, music, and video; request help with genealogy projects; find jobs and get assistance applying for them; take practice tests and learn workplace skills; foster early childhood literacy; encourage other Ohioans to read; support the works of Ohio writers, artists, and musicians at the Ohioana Library; obtain recorded books, magazines, and playback equipment for blind, visually impaired, physically handicapped, and reading disabled Ohio residents; access a collection of materials related to deafness and American Sign Language; and research thousands of electronic resources and databases.
This place is cool.
As I explored the 98,000 square feet of history heaven, I found highway maps from 1919, vintage atlases, hundred-year-old New York Times microfiche, and 1916 U.S. soil samples. I also saw old FEMA flood insurance maps and an 1896 U.S. Army guide to drill regulations for light artillery.
Without question, one of the highlights is the Rare Book Room. It’s lovingly tended by Shannon Kupfer, who’ll be glad to give you a tour if you make an appointment. Among its 7,000 items are the aforementioned Washington letter and medieval manuscript, the complete works of Martin Luther circa 1539 (in German), and the exquisitely illustrated Birds of America collection.
“So many people don’t know that we even have a State Library,” said Beverly Cain, State Librarian of Ohio. “It's an incredible treasure trove.”
See you in the stacks.
Covert parking spots. The identity of Vinchen. Jeni’s Salty Caramel recipe. Some Short North secrets are best kept hidden. Dames Bond Marketplace shouldn’t be one of them (even if its name is inspired by a certain secret agent). The 1,500-square-foot Garden District boutique opened last October and offers a smashing array of apparel, jewelry, accessories, artwork, candles, body care, and home décor.
“The Marketplace gives women an opportunity to showcase their talent and participate in a retail experience, Mary said. “I did a lot of research, and there’s nothing like it in Ohio or the Midwest.”
When it opened, the Marketplace featured 30 vendors. It now has 43, half of which use Dames Bond as their only brick-and-mortar location. Mary designed and merchandised the space, and the vendors work on consignment. It also serves as a small business incubator, offering vendors monthly workshops about trends and marketing.
“This is all about championing women and giving them an opportunity to create something,” Mary said. “Social norms have stopped us from being our best selves, and I want to break that.”
Two new vendors joined the Marketplace yesterday: Sweet Simpliciteas dessert tea and Dragon Ikka Japanese jewelry and gifts. Upcoming events include a Bella Beads trunk show for tonight’s Gallery Hop; a silversmith demonstration tomorrow by Kristi Ross of KK Makes Things; and mother/daughter make-and-take journals with Thrive Theory on May 11.
Yesterday was World AIDS Day. Five Columbus organizations (AIDS Resource Center Ohio, Greater Columbus Mpowerment Center, Stonewall Columbus, Ohio AIDS Coalition, and Columbus Public Health) collaborated to host a silent memorial flash mob at last night’s bustling Short North Holiday Hop. As we walked up and down High Street carrying red glow sticks, we honored those who live with HIV/AIDS and remembered those who have died from it. This was one small event among thousands that were held across the globe, but it shared the same goals: to raise awareness, promote access to treatment, celebrate prevention services, and advocate an AIDS-free future. It was a memorable show of support that I won’t soon forget.
At last night’s Spirit Day candlelight vigil in Goodale Park, a couple hundred community members came out to show their support for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) youth who have taken their lives or been severely impacted by bullying. It was hosted by Stonewall Columbus in honor of Bullying Prevention Month. Passionate speakers including Karla Rothan, Paul Richmond, Linda Regula, Tayo Clyburn, and Kaleidoscope Youth Center inspired us with tales of resilience and visions of a violence-free world. The You Will Rise Project, created by Richmond and Regula, will present an exhibition of artwork by high school students who have been affected by bullying on November 18 at the Columbus Museum of Art.
Today is Spirit Day. It has been reported that up to 77% of students have been victimized by some form of bullying. If you know any young people who have been teased, scorned, or belittled, consider reaching out to them. Offer a reminder that it gets better. Bullying is real and it’s ugly, but love is stronger than hate, and together we can overcome it.
Click here for more photos.
We often hear about programs that benefit the community. Last night at the first annual Short Stop Youth Center Open House, I experienced one that changes it. Children performed monologues from The Wizard of Oz, and the youth band performed such numbers as Seven Nation Army and Somebody That I Used to Know. Mentors spoke passionately about impacting young people’s lives through the arts. The air hummed with creativity and empowerment.
Short Stop is a free after-school program in the Short North for kids aged 7-18, offering activities in theater, art, music, dance, homework help, healthy eating, and drug/alcohol prevention. It’s open Monday to Friday from 2:30 to 8:00 p.m. There are currently 25 children enrolled at the center, which receives funding from United Way of Central Ohio and ADAMH, but it can accommodate more. The group is hosting a free haunted house on October 30.
Click here for more photos.
At last weekend’s 31st annual Columbus Pride celebration, the air literally swirled with love. Signs read “God Loves Us All,” “I Support Love,” “Love Makes a Family,” and “Love Never Fails.” Around 230,000 people visited the Short North in honor of diversity and equality. The needle is moving in the right direction, but there’s still work to be done. During Saturday’s parade, I overheard a college student say that his father tried to discourage him from moving to Columbus because it was “too gay,” a woman who said that her parents would never march in a parade to support her being a lesbian, and a man who said that he suffered with severe depression as a teenager. When all of us have true universal acceptance to love whomever we choose, the comfort to live without fear, and equal legal rights — humanity will have taken one of its biggest strides. Click here for more photos.
The Short North Civic Association will launch the fourth season of Screen on the Green on July 20 with a screening of Scott Pilgrim vs. the World. This will be the first of three outdoor movie nights held on a 30-foot screen at the softball diamond in the southwest corner of Goodale Park.
All movies begin at sundown and will be preceded by a half hour of classic cartoons. Each film will also feature themed contests and activities that encourage audience participation. Details about these fun interactive elements will be shared two weeks before each screening.
A variety of food trucks and carts will sell refreshments, as organized by Food Fort Columbus. Attendees are encouraged to bring blankets, lawn chairs, and flashlights. There are no rain dates.
Screen on the Green is free and open to the public. It’s made possible through organization and major funding by the Short North Civic Association, with additional funding by the Gateway Film Center and ComFest.
The 4th annual Goodale Park Music Series will host six free concerts at Goodale Park’s Gazebo this summer. The lineup features Tony Monaco on July 8, The Fabulous Johnson Brothers on July 15, Maza Blaska on July 29, Mary Adam 12 on August 12, Nick Tolford & Company on August 19, and The Spikedrivers on August 26. All shows run from 12:30 to 2:00 p.m.
New This Year: Live Art + Comic Book Creators
A rotating group of local artists will create live art at the park throughout the series, including Short North artist Josey Joseph, Hayley Meyers with Terra Gallery, and youth artists from TRANSIT Arts. Local comic book creators including 2 Headed Monster Comics, Max Ink, Nix Comics, Sunday Comix, Vantage:Inhouse Productions, and Yuri The Comic will sell comic books at the concerts.
A variety of local food carts will sell refreshments at each show, as organized by Food Fort Columbus.
Veteran sound engineer Fred Blitzer with Vital Companies will run sound for all six shows.
Click here to see photo albums from the series.
Oh, zombies of Central Ohio. I adore you. Congratulations on an amazing turnout at Saturday’s 6th annual ZombieWalk Columbus. More than 2,000 of you trudged through the Short North, and you raised a staggering 4,264 pounds of food for the Mid-Ohio Foodbank. There were bride zombies, marching band zombies, surgeon zombies, hula girl zombies, scarecrow zombies, hippie zombies, baby zombies, dog zombies, a parrot zombie, and (of course) sexy zombies. And yet it was the zombie clowns that made me want to climb the arches and cry. Regular clowns scare me, let alone corpse ones. So thanks for the creepy clown memories, and see you next year. Click here for more photos.
This year’s Short North Yard Sale will be held on Saturday, June 2 from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Hosted by the Short North Civic Association, it takes place throughout Victorian Village, Harrison West, Italian Village, Dennison Place, and The Circles. The daylong treasure hunt of furniture, clothing, accessories, toys, and knickknacks is the largest neighborhood yard sale in Columbus. Short North area residents can register in the official listing here.
The Short North Foundation is accepting requests for grants between $500 and $2,500 from area organizations with projects taking place in or around the Short North. Specifically, the Foundation seeks projects and programs that benefit Short North area residents, unite Short North neighborhoods, and incorporate or preserve public works of art and architecture.
The deadline to submit a grant proposal is June 29. Projects requiring multiple-year funding will be considered. Past projects that have been funded by the Foundation include the Goodale Park Music Series, Screen on the Green movie series in Goodale Park, Harrison Park Art Awards, tree plaques in Goodale Park, flower beds in Italian Village Park, Columbus Art Walks, and the Columbus Film Council. To request grant guidelines and a grant application, email Alexandra Kelley Fox.
Founded in 2000, the Short North Foundation aims to advance the creative spirit, diversity, and vitality of the Short North Neighborhoods and Short North Arts District. It maintains partnerships with the Friends of Goodale Park, Harrison West Society, Italian Village Commission, Italian Village Society, Short North Business Association, Short North Civic Association, Short North Special Improvement District, and the Victorian Village Commission. Since its inception, the Foundation has worked with neighborhood civic organizations to help fund Short North area bench restorations, consistent neighborhood sign programs, bicycle bollards, the Community Campaign for Creating Encounters in Urban Art and History, the Short North Parking Initiative, the Short North Pocket Parks Campaign, and the Short North District Roundtables.
Columbus turns 200 today1. There have been several public festivities to honor this occasion, and yet I also wanted to acknowledge it privately. This has, after all, been my home for 22 years and I was born in the year of our country’s Bicentennial. So I trekked through the snow to a tree in the middle of Goodale Park, lit a Candle Lab candle, and sang Happy Birthday. I gave thanks. And I left a frosted vanilla cupcake from the North Market. Yes, I looked around to make sure no one was watching the kook with her makeshift solo Bicentennial party. But to do such a thing in the city that taught me about the power of accessibility and value of creative expression somehow felt appropriate.
1 It’s also Valentine’s Day. I’m wishing everyone a Happy Valentennial.
How can you not try something called Influenza Sorbet? One of the new seasonal items from the flavor gurus at Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams, this flu-thwarting concoction draws inspiration from vintage home remedies. Its zippy blend of orange and lemon juices, honey, cayenne pepper, ground ginger, and whiskey will clear your sinuses quicker than a bowl of wasabi. I tasted the sorbet without being under the weather, but it reminded me that the Short North is the place to be if your immune system is compromised. For years, my go-to congestion redemption has been the spicy lemongrass broth from Lemongrass. Packed with chili paste, it swiftly roundhouses even the most stubborn of colds. Being sick sucks, but these homegrown antidotes make coping a little more fun.
The Short North Civic Association will host its annual Winter Party on Thursday, January 19 at Short North Stage from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. If you live in the area, this is a great way to mingle with your neighbors and learn about what’s happening in the Short North. Admission is free and refreshments will be provided. Live performances of songs from upcoming Short North Stage shows will take place in the Green Room and tours of the newly reopened Garden Theatre will be offered. Guests can elect 2012 SNCA officers and provide suggestions for future SNCA events. The SNCA welcomes all area homeowners, renters, business owners, and employees to become members. Annual memberships cost $25 for individuals, $50 per household, and $75 for businesses.
I’ve served on the board of the SNCA for the past few years. Formerly known as the Victorian Village Society, it’s a nonprofit organization focused on building a strong community through representation, education, advocacy, and events. Our major projects include the Short North Tour of Homes & Gardens, Screen on the Green movie series, Goodale Park Music Series, Short North Yard Sale, Short North Block Watch, The Vibe monthly eNewsletter, Short North neighborhood sign program, and area traffic management studies.
There are times for pretty and vapid art, but now isn’t one of them. Our economy is mangled. Socio-political deceit has reached a frightening high. We’re being smothered by over-commercialization and over-exploitation. At this precise moment, art should mean something. Columbus street art hero Vinchen just held a show of more than 20 new works at Invisible Gallery on King Avenue. It was presented by Rivet and ended yesterday, a fortnight before Guy Fawkes Day. Through ground level wall murals and floor installations, it hurled statements against corporate mistrust, reverse patriotism, and pseudo-feminism. Vinchen’s identity remains unknown, but this exhibit brilliantly unmasked his/her psyche. Click here for more photos.
During last night’s Gallery Hop in the Short North, it hit me for the thousandth time: Columbus is one positive, passionate force. We visited four exhibits along High Street, starting with Oxygen Art Auction by The Digital Immigrants at Voodoo Denim Lounge. It features five unique interpretations of World War II high-altitude oxygen tanks. Half of all proceeds from the auction, which ends in late November, will benefit the Wounded Warrior Project. Next was Spectacle by Coreroc at Image Optical, a series of portraits whose subjects wear glasses. Then we stopped by Rivet Gallery to see a group show of screen prints by Clinton Reno, Graham Erwin, and Ryan Brinkerhoff. Our last stop was the third annual Yummy Art Show, which showcases food-inspired pieces created by 40 artists. A fundraiser for the Mid-Ohio Foodbank and promoter of Local Foods Week, it was held at Brothers Drake Meadery. In the past day alone, I’ve heard friends say “We’re so lucky to live here” and “How awesome is our city?” I couldn’t agree more. Click here for more photos.
The third annual Short North Art al Fresco took place on Saturday. A shot of gutsy spirit into the rhythm of High Street, its 13 installations included Field Ninjas by Adam Brouillette; Paper Pulp Installation by Daniel Colvin; The Life Cycle Tree by Jennifer Deafenbaugh; Birds of Prey by Linda Diec; Fresh Flower Mandala by Tracy Elzy, Lisa McLymont, and Cat Sheridan; You Take Yourself Too Seriously by Joe David Mitchell; Noise II by Lexie Stoia Pierce; Alleys Can Be Scary by Stephanie Rond; Sweeping on High Street by Chanika Svetvilas; Mural by Nikos Fyodor, Andrew Lundberg, and Chris Sherman of Urban Scrawl; Bus Stop Modification by Kim Webb; QR Code Exhibit by Wonderland Columbus; and Recycled Container Mixed Media by Joan Zeller. I was honored to be a juror of this outdoor cornucopia. We awarded Urban Scrawl’s Mural with Best in Show and gave Honorable Mentions to Adam Brouillette, Joe David Mitchell, and Stephanie Rond. Click here for more photos.
The 39th annual Greek Festival takes place this weekend at the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral in the Short North. An ebullient four-day affair, it offers patrons a taste of Hellenic life through music, singers, dancers, artwork, clothing, jewelry, cooking demonstrations, cultural workshops, cathedral tours, and food. Mountains of Greek food served by proud, smiling folks who are enthusiastic about making and serving it. Elderly parishioners, in fact, stand at the entrance of the indoor food plaza to greet and shake hands with every person in line. It doesn’t get much cuter than that. So whether you like Moussaka, Dolmades, Keftedes, Souvlaki, or Spanakopita; have a hankering for Baklava, Amigdalota, Kataifi, Melomacarona, or Koulourakia; or just want to swig Ouzo, Metaxa, or Mythos; this celebration is for you. Opa. Click here for more photos.
It’s not every day that we welcome a new city park in Columbus, let alone one facing the Olentangy River. Yesterday afternoon members of the Harrison West Society, Columbus Recreation and Parks, and Wagenbrenner Development, along with Mayor Michael Coleman, officially dedicated Harrison Park. At the corner of West First Avenue and Harrison Park Place, this stunning green space took a mighty dose of public-private partnerships and nearly nine years to bring to life. The park connects to the Olentangy Trail and rests on the site of a former factory that was torn down in 2004. With a Tuscan-style gazebo, bold sculptures designed by Columbus College of Art & Design students, and a playground named Funk-ee-town in honor of deceased Harrison West advocate Mary Funk, this place was well worth the wait. Click here for more photos.
Last night we attended a preview party for the soon-to-be-open Short North Stage. Located at the historic Garden Theater in the Short North, this new acting company is fixing to present high-caliber, high-passion musicals. The Garden Theater, which is the second oldest theater in Columbus, opened on Thanksgiving Day in 1920 as a vaudeville and movie emporium. Its rear wall dates back to 1880, when a carriage house stood on the site. In the 1960’s, it turned into a burlesque strip-tease establishment, in the 1980’s it housed pole dancers and pornographic movies, and in the 1990’s it became a church. Although she has lovely bones, the theater needs serious repair. Hardlines Design Company is tackling its restoration through partial funding by the Greater Columbus Arts Council. The redesign will include a 299-seat auditorium, new stage, restrooms, concession area, box seats, dressing rooms, rehearsal spaces, and technical booths. The iconic exterior Art Deco sign and marquee, which was installed in 1932 and destroyed by a 1989 storm, will be restored. Until officers of the nonprofit theater organization can raise enough money to fully renovate the building, they’ll create a temporary 99-seat space with a temporary wall and platform stage. Short North Stage plans to present Follies in October.
Participants of the 28th annual Doo Dah Parade marched for Freedom of Speech Through Humor yesterday afternoon in the Short North. What better way to celebrate our nation’s birthday than unfettered ingenuity, political satire, and flashes of nudity? We all have differing opinions about what is and what should be, but as Americans, we have the right to share them publicly. Citizens of many other countries do not yet have these rights1. Regardless of our race, religion, political orientation, socioeconomic background, education, and occupation, we U-S-of-A-ers are lucky. Our undeniable liberation of spirit was evidenced yesterday by the Marching Fidels, Tea Party haters, Wal-Mart mockers, war protesters, energy savers, hippies, humanitarians, wholesome swing dancers, defiant zombies, vegan activists, a proud cannibal2, and the ballsiest University of Michigan fan alive. And then there was the Angry Baby Mask Wearer, who gets his own sentence because that was just plain creepy. Go freedom.
1 Chinese individuals don’t have the same rights as we do, but they can manufacture our flags.
2 It’s hard not to laugh at an “Eat Locals” T-shirt.
This past weekend, the 39th annual ComFest took place at Goodale Park. As usual, it offered three bohemian-kissed days of bands, beer, and boobs. But every ComFest has a unique personality, and this year’s was (at least for me) one of the mellowest on record. Some of my favorite moments included performances by fo/mo/deep, Enrique Infante, BHB (Brothers Helping Brothers), Transit Arts, and Tony Monaco; the high hula-hoop-to-human ratio; Homage’s new “Columbus 'Til I Die” T-shirt; and the friends I made during my volunteer shift. I’m always impressed with the hardworking team of organizers who spend all year planning this event and taking active measures to support our community. Little known fact: In the past decade, ComFest has donated more than $250,000 to organizations throughout Central Ohio. Party with a purpose, indeed.
The Short North Civic Association kicks off the third season of Screen on the Green on Friday, July 22 with a screening of Airplane! This will be the first of three outdoor movie nights held at the softball diamond in the southwest corner of Goodale Park. Other showings include Rear Window on August 19 and The Goonies on September 16. All movies begin at sundown and will be preceded by a half hour of classic cartoons.
Screen on the Green is free and open to the public. Local food carts will sell refreshments. Attendees are encouraged to bring blankets, lawn chairs, and flashlights. There are no rain dates. Big thanks to the Gateway Film Center, Short North Foundation, and ComFest for helping us to fund this season, to The SBB for booking the food carts, and to Eartha Limited for donating its services to make these events zero waste.
A new community garden is taking shape at 1101 North Fourth Street, and yesterday we happily attended a Memorial Day Cookout in its honor. Filled with locavores, eco-minded citizens, and plain up good people, it’s the kind of place you feel good about having less than a mile from your house. In addition to the garden, the adjacent micro-warehouse space recently started frothing home-brewed beer and will soon host community-minded events. Memorial Day is about honoring those who have served our country, so it felt perfect to celebrate something that will benefit our neighborhood.
This morning, I was extremely excited to announce the lineup for the third season of the Goodale Park Music Series. I couldn’t be happier about all of the new elements being introduced this summer. These concerts are free and open to the public, and they take place on Sunday afternoons in the gazebo at Goodale Park. The lineup features these Columbus performing acts:
All shows run from 12:30 to 2:00 p.m. rain or shine. Fred Blitzer from Vital Film Works will run sound for all six shows. New this year will be the addition of local food cart vendors. Food carts selling refreshments include Earth’s Crust Pizza, Jeni’s Ice Cream, Leslie’s Creperie, and Rad Dog Gourmet Meatless Hot Dogs. They were organized for the series by The SBB.
Also new this year will be two craft vendors: Columbus Crafty Cotillion and THOUGHTco. The Crafty Cotillion will sell a variety of craft items made by Columbus artists and designers at each show, and THOUGHTco will sell Goodale Park Music Series T-shirts, the proceeds of which will be donated back to the series. Columbus Artmobile, which provides arts education and hands-on instruction for students, will be on hand at all six shows with rotating kids arts activities including bubble painting, multi media collages, tie dye T-shirts, printmaking, recycled art, and eco-friendly jewelry making. OpenheartART, a community based performing arts and creative self-expression organization, will perform in Openheart Creature body puppets during the July 10, 31, and August 14 concerts. Eartha Limited will donate its services to make all six of these events zero waste.
My deepest thanks go to the six area organizations who have funded this series from the start: Short North Foundation, Short North Civic Association, Friends of Goodale Park, Harrison West Society, Italian Village Society, and ComFest.
Yesterday was the fifth annual ZombieWalk Columbus. For two fake-blood-filled hours, a couple hundred zombie men, women, children, dolls, and pets limped two miles around the Short North entertaining the daylights out of every passerby. Except for one. “Oh my God, I am like so stressed out right now,” said a (seemingly suburban and seemingly bleached) blonde gal standing behind me. “This is the most disgusting thing I have ever seen in my entire life.”
To me, snap judgements, issues of Us Weekly, and reality TV shows are way scarier and more disturbing than a pack of hyper-creative, philanthropic zombies. ZombieWalk participants collect canned goods for the Mid-Ohio Foodbank, embrace freedom of expression, abide all traffic laws, and never infringe upon anyone’s personal space. Click here for more photos.
The 2011 Short North Yard Sale will be held on Saturday, June 4 from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Presented by the Short North Civic Association, this daylong scavenging adventure takes place in Short North neighborhoods including Victorian Village, Harrison West, Italian Village, Dennison Place, and The Circles. More than 150 homes participate in the event, making it the largest yard sale in Columbus. Short North area residents who’d like to register in the official listing should visit yardsale.shortnorthcivic.org. The online listing features an interactive map and detailed descriptions of the various items that will be for sale, such as furniture, clothing, toys, and jewelry. Here are some photographs that I took of last year’s sale.
As a Short North resident and Short North Civic Association board member, I love the Yard Sale because it unites our neighborhoods and highlights our ever-abundant spirit. From a vintage sewing machine and barely-worn rollerblades to strange plants and turquoise lamps, you just never know what you’re going to find. Our wedding is on June 4 so I’ll miss out on this year’s treasure hunting madness. If you happen to go and you happen to find any My Little Ponies and/or pieces of George Michael memorabilia, please buy them for me and I’ll pay you back. I’m serious.
Substance just celebrated its five-year anniversary. The Short North boutique, which offers sustainably made clothing and accessories, recently launched Substance Lofts on its second story. The new Lofts space features custom-made items by Elizabeth Ashleigh Designs; J Squared Organics fair trade soap and candles; vintage-inspired clothing by Isolda Couture; and pieces from C & E Vintage Jewelry.
Armed with a thoughtful trio of fashion, sustainability, and community involvement, Substance thrives in multiple ways. It carries organic tops and dresses, fair trade items, and vegan handbags. Its Design Lab repurposes fabric from discontinued pieces and has saved more than 300 pounds of clothing from taking space in landfills. It donates a portion of all sales to children’s education programs. So where there’s Substance, there’s style — and heaps of compassion.
As someone who owns enough scarves to wrap around the world at least once, I’m giddy about Substance’s Scarfscription. In lieu of fruit or jam, this is the gift that keeps on styling. Those who sign up for a three-, six-, nine-, or twelve-month Scarfscription receive seasonal scarves and/or wraps that match their personal fashion profiles. Brilliant.
I’ve served on the board of the Short North Foundation for the past five years. We’re currently accepting requests for grants between $500 and $2,500 for projects benefiting the Short North area. Specifically, we seek projects and programs that benefit Short North area residents, unite Short North neighborhoods, and incorporate public works of art and architecture. The deadline to submit a grant proposal is Thursday, June 30. Projects requiring multiple-year funding will be considered. Email me if you’d like to receive grant guidelines and an application.
The Short North Foundation was founded in 2000 and serves to advance the creative spirit, diversity, and vitality of the Short North Neighborhoods and Short North Arts District. It maintains partnerships with the Friends of Goodale Park, Harrison West Society, Italian Village Commission, Italian Village Society, Short North Business Association, Short North Civic Association, Short North Special Improvement District, and the Victorian Village Commission. Since its inception, the Foundation has worked with neighborhood civic organizations to help fund Short North area bench restorations, neighborhood sign programs, bicycle bollards, the Community Campaign for Creating Encounters in Urban Art and History, the Short North Parking Initiative, the Short North Pocket Parks Campaign, and the Short North District Roundtables.
It’s marvelous how our friends Yin and Yang keep reminding us that the universe achieves opposing balance. But sometimes I think they’re just onerous comedians. Take, if you will, my gym. It’s situated directly across the street from a White Castle. This means that rows of state-of-the-art treadmills, ellipticals, and stationary bicycles face vistas of fries and double cheeseburgers. We, The Exercisers, furiously wipe our dripping brows as our low-heartrated compatriots, The Eaters, gaze at us and wipe occasional crumbs from their maws. We push ourselves to run or climb for another 10 minutes as they watch us with tepid wonder from mushy blue booths. They don’t know why the heck we’re exhausting ourselves, and we wouldn’t be caught dead cramming chicken rings into our pieholes. Like having a gun shop by a tap dance studio or a tattoo parlor across from a daycare center, it just ain’t right.
My neighborhood White Castle is by no means royal and the smells that emanate from it are anything but courtly. Its patrons could, however, be deemed Knights of Litter, since many of us nearby residents throw away an average of 14,566 slider boxes per year. But this 24-hour fried fortress is surrounded by an organic café, a French-inspired bar/charcuterie, a modern furnishings boutique, and a vintage emporium. So I’ll be among the first to sound my bugle if it ever rolls up its drawbridge. And I’m never afraid to kill a metaphor.
I sit on the board of the Short North Civic Association (SNCA), which will host its Annual Gathering on January 20 from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. at the newly opened Hubbard Grille. All residents of the Short North area are invited, and you don’t need to be an SNCA member to attend. The primary purpose of this yearly social event is to unite community residents, support the neighborhood, and elect SNCA officers for 2011. Guests will be invited to offer suggestions for future SNCA activities, which currently include the Short North Tour of Homes, Short North Yard Sale, and Screen on the Green movie series in Goodale Park. Admission is free and a cash bar will be available. Complimentary hors d’oeuvres will be provided and SNCA members will receive one free beverage. Annual SNCA memberships begin at $25 and can be obtained at the event or by visiting shortnorthcivic.org and clicking on “Membership.”