Building a Neighborhood Community:
Put the Chairs in a Circle and Start Talking
Starting seven years ago, we have been hosting block parties on our back deck. This weekend we had another one, after a two-year hiatus due to Covid. Everyone brought a dish to share and we sat in a circle around our fire pit and shared our stories.
We heard about kids, about career changes, retirement, moving, neighborhood events, and neighbors with serious illnesses. Ever since our first block party, a strong sense of community has developed on Harrison Avenue. It is wonderful to be able to greet neighbors by name and know what they do. Neighbors also volunteer to help each other – trips to the store or rides to the doctor, etc.
The key to this community is the conversation that flows naturally from the “magic of the circle.” Here are some of the photos Mary took,
If you want to build community in your neighborhood, set a date, a time, and a place. Print up some fliers and go door-to-door passing them out. You will get a positive response. After two years of Covid and the chaos in the wider world, we are eager to connect. Then, when people come together, put the chairs in a circle and invite sharing of stories. It will unfold naturally.
Two of my photos have been accepted for an all B&W photo show at the “Art Works Downtown Gallery” (1337 4th Street, San Rafael, CA)
The Pacific Ocean: End of the Line
Three Navajo Siblings in Monument Valley
Photo Show Update
As mentioned in prior blogs, two of my photos in the Half Moon Bay show won prizes. My wife, Mary, who is very supportive of my photography, urged me to display my prize ribbons around the house. So I put them on my side of the bed board of our bed,