This is the first year our S-LC office joined PARK(ing) Day, along with the Off-Campus Programs Office. Our transportation coordinator, Tina Bolt, who was one of the people in charge of making this happen, has put together a nice short blog to express what she has learned during this day. Check it out and learn more about what PARK(ing) Day is all about and what as Calvin College staffs and students did in this event.
PARK(ing) Day originated in 2005 by Rebar, a San Francisco art and design collective. Rebar wanted to raise awareness on the lack of park space in the city. By putting change in the meter of a parking space allowed Rebar to lease this real estate for a temporary amount of time. Rebar chose to lease a single parking space for the day and instead of parking a car chose to creatively transform this space into a small park. PARK(ing) Day is now an annual global event where any citizen can participate. The event has taken place in more than 50 cities including Chicago, New York, Toronto, London, Barcelona, and Grand Rapids!
This is the second year Grand Rapids participated in the PARK(ing) Day event. Calvin has participated in the event for both years. In 2008 Calvin’s Social Justice Coalition took part in the event, and this year the Service-Learning Center and Off Campus programs partnered with the Creston Neighborhood Association to participate in the festivities of PARK(ing) Day 2009. Recently the Creston Neighborhood Association received a Kaboom grant. The intent of this grant is to use playgrounds as a rallying point to initiate more community development and crime prevention. There is a hope that the neighborhood would come together to fix up a playground and this would result in more communication with one another. For further information visit http://www.mlive.com/news/grand-rapids/index.ssf/2009/07/sweet_place_for_a_park_will_ge.html
“Our park” was located on Louis, just east of Monroe right on Rosa Park Circle. The theme of “our park” this year was the importance of play in our lives. People were invited into “our park” to play a game, share a favorite play memory or to just hang out. The theme of the importance of play in our lives incorporated the Creston Neighborhood Association very well.