Here’s quick round-up of Ad Hoc discussions, questions and comments from the past three weeks:
• Ad Hoc was grateful for the recent background briefing from the Rev. Jeff Waugh and the Rev. Chris Carlson about the operations of The Associated Churches of Lindsborg, known as TACOL (tack’-el) in local parlance. It continues an essential tradition of helping, and one of its many projects is the popular Thrift Store at 509 E. Swensson. (Let's say a warm thanks to all the community members who volunteer there. And those who donate items) Proceeds from store sales are put back to work in the community. Ad Hoc heard more about the scope of TACOL's work and funding — as well as current challenges and evolutions in working with those of us in poverty. Thanks again, Jeff and Chris, for taking time with us.
• Shoutout to the makers of Broadway RFD 2018 and its audiences. Thanks for creating and supporting live theater in our town.
• Don’t miss the Makers Street “busker edition” from 5-8 p.m. Friday, Aug. 10. Would you be willing to do some street side entertainment for this event — singing, dancing, playing an instrument, hoola hooping, juggling, street theater? Just for fun. Here’s your invitation to join in. Really. Get an act together and call Tayla Mace at The White Peacock to arrange a busking location. Would love to see you.
• Our friend and colleague Deb Briggs has announced that her Trollslanda Toy Store is for sale and that she and her family are moving to Copenhagen. If you or someone you know would like to buy the inventory of a delightful business with a great rental location that many families and grandparents have come to rely on, get with Deb. Now. That’s email@example.com. It’s difficult to lose Deb and her family. In a word, pffffft. (On the bright side: We’ll have a hometown contact in Copenhagen.) Bon voyage, Deb!
• Connected Fair Trade will celebrate five years in downtown Lindsborg this Friday. Amy Kay Pavlovich and the Connected staff over the years have contributed *so much* to the substance and vibe in Lindsborg, and we thank them. Please stop by, whether Friday or another time, to add your words to Connected’s celebration.
• As we approach the 150th anniversary of Lindsborg in 2019 and the extra company that's sure to come, it’s time to take a more urgent and critical look at our spaces. Improvements and cleanup can begin now as the weather moderates. Please: take a look at every aspect of your place’s exterior. What looks tired? Paint? Outdoor seating? Flower pots? Signage? Sometimes it’s difficult to look at everyday sights with new eyes. Ask your friends and neighbors to look with you and solicit their kind suggestions. Say, sponsors of public art: How does your piece look? Art panels at Viking Village Playground? Public art throughout the community? Wild Dala Horses? Should they come off display or can they be refurbished? Don’t wait. Ask for help and ideas and get organized. Of special note: Stubborn weedy patches and lonely corners. These can be more attractive with some moderate effort and expense — and ultimately can turn into places that need far less maintenance. Ask for help and kind suggestions. Let’s swing into action, folks.
• We’re thinking with the Lindsborg CVB about ways to further the cause of overnight stays. Sometimes it’s as simple as encouraging friends and family or visitors to stay instead of drive on. Or consider a long weekend here. Meanwhile, it also will be important to invent or extend events to make it worth an overnight stay for some of Lindsborg’s historic and natural audiences. We also are focused on spreading the news of weekday event and meeting availabilities at the J.O. Sundstrom Conference Center. We’ve been working on this since Ad Hoc came to be almost six years ago. There has been good progress, and that work continues.
• Lindsborg is seeing more success in attracting larger meetings and events to the Sundstrom Center (a doll convention this year and a 2019 museum association meeting, for example). That also means use of overnight accommodations beyond those that can be offered in Lindsborg. The CVB works with lodging establishments within easy driving distance when needed and asked. However, the issue of transportation between Lindsborg and these lodging establishments crops up more often now. Conference organizers are asking for shuttle vehicles to be provided so their members can enjoy the community without worry about finding their way back to their lodgings. It is an amenity that larger communities are able to provide to larger overnight groups.
• What does it mean for us when a lesser level of hospitality is offered at area and statewide recreational events -- hiking, biking among them —on roads and properties associated with Lindsborg? What could it mean if Lindsborg were able to field a few volunteers for select events to improve welcoming and guidance to our area?