On Thursday, January 17, Forecast Public Art invited a diverse group of community members that had a vested interest in the concept of “placemaking” to engage in an open dialogue. The goal of this event was to host a cross sector conversation to inspire collaboration, knowledge sharing and community growth.

Over 50 participants showed up to Forecast’s offices for this event. Questions posed to the large group included:

  • How do we support all folks to take their rightful place?
  • What would a collaborative workspace for placemakers look like?
  • What does it mean to have a resilient place?
  • Do others spaces matter?
  • How big does a space need to be to matter?
  • What makes collaboration effective across organizations?
  • What might contribute to “dismantling” the division of our “Twin Cities” and what might we create together?
  • What motivates you to “make place”?
  • Is place a sense of belonging to/coming from a particular place important to a sense of authentic democracy?

Facilitators Kirstin Wiegmann and Melinda Childs chose to utilize Open Space Technology as a convening strategy to encourage participants to bring their own experience to the conversation and enable them to pose the questions most relevant to their community. The open space session was followed by a happy hour for networking and continued conversation.

Forecast sees incredible benefits in engaging communities in cross sector dialogues that utilize open space technology and other tools. Plans to convene additional conversations around the themes of healing arts and livability are in progress. Our placemaking event has already led to two follow up collaborations with community groups seeking our help in facilitation around the subject of placemaking and community development.  It is great to see communities mobilized and energized as a result of these conversations!

IFP MN’s Deacon Warner created the video.

This event was made possible by InCommons, a Bush Foundation initiative.