Sunday, October 25, 2009

Photographic After Party, Design Planning Session In The Hawthorne Eco Village...

Photos by Jeff Skrenes

Hey, it's ME, Johnny Northside. Remember me? The guy who actually runs this blog?

Yes, once again I've been away for a while earning a paycheck by driving a truck to multiple states. My two-week journey took me to South Dakota, Iowa, Missouri, Kentucky, Indiana, Illinois, Tennessee, Texas, Mississippi, Louisiana.

And, as of this moment, I'm still "up north" and out of town, tending to a freezer unit over the weekend and waiting for another trucking run on Monday, hopefully only to Des Moines, Iowa and back. But that's money and I gotta go.

It's like I tell my friends in North Minneapolis....

I love you but I LOVE THE ROAD. Don't make me chooooooose.

During my long journey, I was forced (FORCED, I tell you!) to live on boudin balls and crawfish pie in Louisiana. Thankfully, while I was on my gastronomical tour of Dixieland, the Hawthorne Hawkman did a great job keeping readers informed of various events in NoMi.

Here in NoMi, those of us who are active in neighborhood revitalization have the kind of war-buddy, "band of brothers" closeness one might find in an army platoon. Part of that closeness involves freely using each other's gear; whether it's a blog, a lawnmower or a digital camera. Recently, I downloaded dozens of photos from somebody's camera, and found great pictures of a design planning session in early September at the Hawthorne Eco Village.

I said to myself, hey, these photos are too good NOT to publish. Even though the gathering happened more than a month ago, our tremendous progress in the Eco Village is always worth celebrating.


In the photo at the top of this post, Abbie Loosen of PPL (on the right) looks on as residents (including Pam "Pattycake" Patrek and "The Polish Lady") devour great food from Bangkok Market.

Bangkok Market constantly supports Hawthorne Neighborhood events, including the recent Hawthorne Neighborhood annual meeting. Their spring rolls and shredded papaya salad are perpetual favorites. Below, some of the food at the Eco Village gathering in early September.

Below, everybody loves looking at plans for the Eco Village and dreaming of the future, whether the plan is rendered in a drawing or little wood blocks. Me, I'm partial to the little wood blocks.

In the two pictures below--and this is what gets me the most excited about this whole event, not even kidding--the plastic cups used were made of bio-degradable material produced from corn starch polymer. This kind of plastic can also be found at 42nd Ave. Station, NoMi's newest and hottest coffee shop with FREE WiFi, woo hoo.

Just as the government has tried to mandate better gas milage in vehicles, and created incentives to develop renewable energy, I think the government needs to look toward phasing out plastic food containers made from (Middle Eastern) petroleum, and phase in biodegradable containers made of renewable local resources such as corn starch. Well, what better place than our future Hawthorne Eco Village to raise consciousness about these futuristic products?

The Eco Village is a small mirror of North Minneapolis itself: crime used to be out of control, but now the crime rate has plunged and life has become (mostly) peaceful, wholesome, and oh-so-affordable. History is being written every day through our struggle, and these photos are a piece of that history I didn't want to fall by the wayside. Thanks, again, to Abbie Loosen for putting together this great event and a special thanks for the use of bio-degradable plastic.

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