<![CDATA[SPARE A DIME - Blog]]>Sun, 03 Jan 2016 03:28:40 -0800Weebly<![CDATA[Change: A Recipe for Hard Times]]>Mon, 06 May 2013 14:27:53 GMThttp://spare-a-dime.weebly.com/blog/change-a-recipe-for-hard-timesMenu Mondays | Something from Nothing: Thrifty Food (for Thought) from COSACOSA
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Today, May 6, 2013 is the 78 year anniversary of the founding of the Works Progress Administration.  In honor of the WPA (and the last of our daily blog entries for the Spare A Dime project), we offer you a different sort of recipe for Menu Monday:  The 7Cs™ – COSACOSA's trademark recipe for how we make it better.™

We'll occasionally update this blog with news about the Spare A Dime project, the cast album, and future iterations of both the songs and stories.  Thank you for being such an essential part of our process.  Learn more and volunteer at our organizational website cosacosa.org!

COSACOSA's 7Cs™
Ingredients & Directions

• Conversation
We initiate dialogues bringing project stakeholders together to learn about each other, to research neighborhood histories, and to share concerns and hopes for their community.  In this step, project participants match their own needs and assets with those of others, and with those of the community at large.

• Cooperation
We engender collaborative strategic project planning among the project participants, guided by community leaders, project staff and professional artists.  In this step, project participants determine their desired outcomes for the project and the overall design.

• Community
We establish a feeling of solidarity among the project stakeholders.  In this step representative participants work as a team to share project plans with the larger community, to organize community response, and to invite broad public participation.

• Creation
We create community-specific public work through public participation.  In this step, project participants engage in hands-on collaboration with COSACOSA artists in free and accessible community workshops.

• Celebration
We commemorate and disseminate the work. In this step, project participants share their completed work with the larger community through openings, unveilings, performances, testimonies, and/or in print and online publications.

• Consideration
We engage stakeholders in ongoing reflection, review, and evaluation. In this step, participants assess the project's successes and challenges, gauge both its short- and long-term impacts, and propose models for replication.

• Change
We incite lasting intercommunity and interpersonal transformations to build community social capital and to sustain positive neighborhood change. In this step, project stakeholders impart the art and collaborative leadership competencies they have acquired to others and continue to work for the good of their shared community, both on their own and in continuing partnership with COSACOSA.

7Cs™ Civic Engagement Method @2010 COSACOSA art at large, Inc.

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7Cs™ Civic Engagement Method by COSACOSA art at large, Inc. is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

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<![CDATA[Travel in time to a 1935 state of mind.]]>Sun, 05 May 2013 07:07:22 GMThttp://spare-a-dime.weebly.com/blog/travel-in-time-to-a-1935-state-of-mind17What happened this week in 1935? The Works Progress Administration was founded!
On May 6, 1935, the Works Progress Administration (WPA) was created by Presidential Order.  The WPA was the signature program of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's (FDR's) New Deal and the largest work program the nation has every seen.  In the midst of the Great Depression, the WPA created jobs for over 8 million Americans.

This 1936 film, from the FDR Presidential Library, explores the depth and breath of work offered by the WPA.  Then, as now, Work Pays America!  Enjoy!
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<![CDATA[Spare A Dime redux, songs 13-16.]]>Sat, 04 May 2013 17:22:14 GMThttp://spare-a-dime.weebly.com/blog/spare-a-dime-redux-songs-13-16Our final week of daily blogging features a montage of performance images and songs. Picture

"Sweet and low or loud and clear,
there's a song each of us sings.
Come together, feel the power
of voices raised.
Though at times we strain to hear,
hope is calling; freedom rings,
always answering the sound
of voices raised."

-Voices Raised
a song about rights
sung by The Farmer,
played by Phyllis Chapell

words & music by K. Niemela
drawing by S. Teare
animation by G. McGarity-Alegrett

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"Our fate's bound
inextricably,
in justice and in liberty.
Rise or fall,
we'll always be
together, indivisibly."

-Indivisibly
a song about responsibility
sung by The Mother,
played by Venissa Santi

words & music by K. Niemela
drawing by S. Teare
animation by G. McGarity-Alegrett

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"You've nothing to fear
but the fear that has bound you,
so join hands together,
continue the dance!"

-Life Turns on a Dime (reprise)
a reminder of life's changeability
sung by FDR,
played by Bill Gross

words & music by K. Niemela
drawing by S. Teare
animation by G. McGarity-Alegrett

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"Can you see
your own reflection in me,
the frailty and the sublime?
Can you offer hope
and opportunity?
Brother, sister, neighbor
- citizens all -
can you spare a dime?"

-Brother, Can You Spare A Dime?
an iconic anthem from the 1930s
sung by the entire cast

words by Y. Harburg, music by J. Gorney
additional lyrics by K. Niemela
drawing by S. Teare
animation by G. McGarity-Alegrett

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<![CDATA[Spare A Dime redux, songs 10-12.]]>Fri, 03 May 2013 21:47:36 GMThttp://spare-a-dime.weebly.com/blog/spare-a-dime-redux-songs-10-12Our final week of daily blogging features a montage of performance images and songs.
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"Change is in the making,
I feel it in the air...
I sense it everywhere.
It elates me, sates me.
I'm sure you will agree
change is not a part from me;
change is at the heart of me.
Change in the making
is what's happening to me."

-Change in the Making
a song about love & hope
sung by The Merchant & The Builder,
played by Khrista White &
Victor Rodriguez

words & music by K. Niemela
drawing by S. Teare
animations by G. McGarity-Alegrett

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"Being in the woods
I see the forest for the trees.
My conserving nature
is what is conserving me."

-Citizen Conservation
a song about the Civilian Conservation Corps
sung by The Veteran,
played by Lourin Plant

words & music by K. Niemela
drawing by S. Teare
animations by G. McGarity-Alegrett

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"Changing places,
the saving grace is
the work that we share,
side by side.
Can't deny
it's quite a ride
to reinvent our civic pride."

-Changing Places
a song about Federal Project
Number One
sung by The Immigrant,
played by Julian Coleman

words & music by K. Niemela
drawing by S. Teare
animations by G. McGarity-Alegrett

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<![CDATA[Spare A Dime redux, songs 7-9.]]>Thu, 02 May 2013 22:18:29 GMThttp://spare-a-dime.weebly.com/blog/spare-a-dime-redux-songs-7-9Our final week of daily blogging features a montage of performance images and songs.
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"Life is a dimestore,
and we are its wares,
our dreams on a shelf
left where nobody cares.
A dime a dozen,
our story's the same:
nothing to hope for,
and no one to blame."

-Dimestore Lullaby
a song about escape
sung by The Mother,
played by Venissa Santi

words & music by K. Niemela
drawing by S. Teare
animations by G. McGarity-Alegrett

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"I call forth
a new progressive army:
citizens of ev'ry faith and party!
If you've eyes to see
and hearts to understand,
if your burdened conscience
cares for your fellow man,
step up for a better tomorrow!
Step up for a brighter today!

-Step Up for a Better Tomorrow
a song announcing the WPA
sung by FDR,
played by Bill Gross

words & music by K. Niemela
drawing by S. Teare
animations by G. McGarity-Alegrett

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"If you give a man a dole,
you save his body, not his soul.
If you give him work to do,
you save his body and soul, too!"

-Work Is Progress
a song celebrating WPA slogans
sung by FDR &
the Chorus of Liberty

words & music by K. Niemela
drawing by S. Teare
animations by G. McGarity-Alegrett

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<![CDATA[Spare A Dime redux, songs 4-6.]]>Wed, 01 May 2013 04:29:57 GMThttp://spare-a-dime.weebly.com/blog/spare-a-dime-redux-songs-4-6Our final week of daily blogging features a montage of performance images and songs.
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"Once I fought hand to hand
with honor for my home.
Now I live hand to handout,
struggling on my own.
Though apathy's the enemy,
I battle my despair:
the absence here of Liberty
defended over there."

-Hand to Hand
a song about the patriotism
sung by The Veteran,
played by Lourin Plant

words and music by K. Niemela
drawing by S. Teare
animation by G. McGarity-Alegrett

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"Freedom's fire burns constantly,
even when it seems obscure.
It's our responsibility
to keep the flame so it endures."

-Suns of Liberty
a song about freedom
sung by the Chorus of Liberty

words and music by K. Niemela
drawing by S. Teare
animation by G. McGarity-Alegrett

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"Promises made,
promises broken,
America, will you be
the land of hopes,
both sung and spoken,
that we have yet to see?"

-Promised Land
a song about American ideals
sung by The Farmer &
The Immigrant,
played by Phyllis Chapell &
Julian Coleman

words and music by K. Niemela
drawing by S. Teare
animation by G. McGarity-Alegrett

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<![CDATA[Spare A Dime redux, songs 1-3.]]>Tue, 30 Apr 2013 04:49:07 GMThttp://spare-a-dime.weebly.com/blog/spare-a-dime-redux-songs-1-3Our final week of daily blogging features a montage of performance images and songs.
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"Though chaos swirls 'round us
and tries to confound us
by coaxing us into
a motionless trance,
we've nothing to fear
but the fear that has bound us,
so, bravely, we choose
to continue to dance."

-Life Turns on a Dime
a song about life's changeability
sung by FDR,
played by Bill Gross

words & music by K. Niemela
drawing by S. Teare
animation by G. McGarity-Alegrett

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"I finally understood
and changed my views:
there really is no 'us and them,'
no differences, especially when
we're all stuck in
a big Pocket of Blues!"

-Pocket of Blues
a song about economic crisis
sung by The Merchant,
played by Khrista White

words & music by K. Niemela
drawing by S. Teare
animation by G. McGarity-Alegrett




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"No livelihood, no dream to plan,
unable to survive –
what happened to my homeland,
where everyone could thrive?"

-Foundation of Hope
a song about unemployment
sung by The Builder,
played by Victor Rodriguez

words & music by K. Niemela
drawing by S. Teare
animation by G. McGarity-Alegrett



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<![CDATA[W.P.A. Soup: A Recipe for Hard Times]]>Mon, 29 Apr 2013 07:20:05 GMThttp://spare-a-dime.weebly.com/blog/wpa-soup-a-recipe-for-hard-timesMenu Mondays | Something from Nothing: Thrifty Foods from the 1930s
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To be able to make something from nothing is a handy skill to have and an essential ingredient for success in any endeavor.  Soups made from just water and root vegetables were commonplace during the 1930s.  This "upscale" version of a Great Depression soup attained its WPA moniker because employment with the agency allowed for the addition of meat and eggs to recipe.  Enjoy!

Ingredients
6 quarts water
2 cups celery, chopped
2 cups onion, chopped
2 cups potatoes, chopped
2 cups salami or sausage, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 to 3 teaspoons butter
Salt and pepper
2 eggs, whipped

Directions
In a large pot, bring water to a boil. Add all ingredients except eggs and simmer one hour.
Gently blend in whipped eggs and continue boiling for one minute.  Let soup chill for 8 hours or overnight to enhance flavor. Heat and serve

courtesy of Rita Van Amber



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<![CDATA[Travel in time to a 1935 state of mind.]]>Sun, 28 Apr 2013 04:32:40 GMThttp://spare-a-dime.weebly.com/blog/travel-in-time-to-a-1935-state-of-mind16What happened this week in 1935?  Jesse Owens set a long jump world record.
James Cleveland “Jesse” Owens was a well-known American track and field athlete who specialized in sprints and long jumps. As an undergraduate at Ohio State University, he known as “The Buckeye Bullet," setting three world records and tied a fourth at the Big Ten Championships in Ann Arbor, Michigan.  On May 5, 1935, Owens, jumped 26’ 8½" setting a world record that held until 1951.  Owen’s impressive performance at the 1936 Berlin Olympics discredited Hitler’s master race theory.  His record win of 4 gold medals stood for 48 years, confirming that individual excellence, not race or national origin, distinguishes one individual from another.
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<![CDATA[Warm Springs eternal.]]>Sat, 27 Apr 2013 05:18:53 GMThttp://spare-a-dime.weebly.com/blog/warm-springs-eternalOne man, in overcoming his own obstacles, made a difference in the lives of millions.
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"Life turns on a dime.
A life in its prime
meets with sudden decline, loss, and pain,
yet summons the will
to inspire and instill
all the disciplined skill
that we need to fulfill and attain
the hopes we would claim."
- from Life Turns on a Dime,
sung by FDR in Spare A Dime

In 1921, at the age of 39, Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR) was stricken with polio and left paralyzed from the waist down.  Before his illness, he had lived a life of privilege.  He had been born into wealth; he had served as assistant secretary of the Navy and had been a candidate for Vice President.  Unwilling to accept that his career in public life was over and believing that he would walk again, FDR searched for ways to alleviate his paralysis.  A friend told him about how the mineral-rich waters of a resort at Warm Springs, Georgia had helped a young man with polio, and FDR immediately traveled there, despite the objections of his family.

Swimming in the waters at Warm Springs, FDR eventually learned to stand on his own by strengthening his atrophied leg and hip muscles.  His success drew national publicity, and other hopeful polio patients traveled to Warm Springs from all over the country.  In 1926, FDR purchased the resort and founded Georgia Warm Springs Foundation, a world-renown polio treatment center, still serving individuals with neuro-muscular disorders today. In 1932, early his first term as President, FDR built a tiny six room cottage at Warm Springs dubbed the "Little White House." He stayed at Warm Springs for at least a month every year (except for 1942 at the beginning of World War II) and died at the cottage in 1945. 

Lore has it that FDR enjoyed the serenity of the woods behind the Little White House (photo by Spare A Dime composer Kimberly Niemela, above), and that his time at Warm Springs, whether overcoming his own obstacles, sharing experiences with other polio patients, or working alone at the cottage, influenced his design and development of New Deal programs.  He wrote, "The country needs and, unless I mistake its temper, the country demands bold, persistent experimentation.  It is common sense to take a method and try it.  If it fails, admit it frankly and try another.  But above all, try something.  The millions who are in want will not stand by silently forever while the things to satisfy their needs are within easy reach.  We need enthusiasm, imagination and the ability to face facts, even unpleasant ones, bravely... Yours is not the task of making your way in the world, but the task of remaking the world which you will find before you.  May every one of us be granted the courage, the faith and the vision to give the best that is in us to that remaking!"

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