Middlebury Better Block

IMG_0356**I know that I’m late to the game with this post, but I couldn’t get by without writing something.**

As I start my journey into the world of foundation work, I’ve gotten a chance to witness and be a part of some really transformative projects. This happens to be one of them.

Middlebury was the first settlement of what has now become Akron and is home to the Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co. headquarters and Summa Hospital. In the last few years, there has been a lot of activity in the area. Organizations like the W.O.M.B (Way of Mind and Body) have begun really engaging with the community and building a space that the residence are free to express themselves.

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Marissa of NNUP reached out to the Knight Foundation and received funding to help launch a Middlebury Better Block. Due to her, the W.O.M.B., Rooted Akron, the Akron League of Creative Interventionists, area churches, residence and an array of other sponsors to match the funds, the event was a great success. There was more activity in those two days than I have ever seen in the area. The best part about it is that they have formed a committee that focuses on next steps to revitalize the area and the city installed a permanent bike lane that helps slow down the traffic.

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Over the course of a week, volunteers created palette benches, built and painted a tire jungle gym, planted flowers and fruit trees, and so much more. The two-day event featured several local bands, DJs and food vendors. There was a bookstore, children’s play area, garden, and even the Sustainer by Kaley Foster made an appearance.

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I’m incredibly excited for the future of this area. Lots of great things sure to come.

Thanks for reading,

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