Letter to Our Neighbors

Posted: February 12, 2010 in Uncategorized
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This is the letter we delivered to all of our neighbors, since it is too snowy right now to do proper in person introductions

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Hey Yall

We are your new neighbors, at 2005 Barton Avenue aka The Wingnut. We bought the house in July, and have spent the past months getting the house fixed up so it is no longer condemned. Usually we are better about getting to know the neighbors, but between the huge amount of work we have been doing and now the cold, we have not been able to get to know everyone. We hope to remedy this soon, but in the meantime wanted to tell you a little about ourselves and get you some contact information.

We are Mo, Johnny Ray, and Jeremy. We also have two dogs- Grits and Flapjack, who are a brindle and black and white pitbull respectively.

Food Not Bombs is a Richmond organization that cooks and serves a vegetarian meal once a week in Monroe Park at 4pm on Sundays. We prepare the food at our house on Sundays from about 12 noon to 3:30, and then we head to the park. Afterwards we come back to do cleanup. Anyone is welcome to come help with the preparation and cooking of food. No experience is necessary, people of all ages etc. are welcome. Food Not Bombs can also count as community service for folks who need to do community service hours but don’t want to travel far. Food Not Bombs also tries to support different community and political groups by bringing food to share. Currently, we are offering solidarity to the REPHRAME public housing group in nearby Gilpin Court by catering their meetings. We would love to talk to people about opportunities for Food Not Bombs to become more involved in the Southern Barton Heights community.

You might have noticed that we sometimes put out food for free in our front yard next to the sidewalk. We get food from a variety of donors, and when we have surplus we like to share. Please feel free to come take whatever you will use. We believe that food is a right not a privilege, and that as a community we need to help take care of each other. Our supply of food is fairly sporadic, so just come by to see if we have any or not.

Another thing that goes on at our house is a craft night every Wednesday at 7. This is where people come over with crafts/art stuff to work on. Activities include stuff like sewing, quilting, knitting, painting, drawing, making stuffed animals, etc. We are mostly amateurs, so don’t feel intimidated about skill levels. So if you want to work on something crafty, come on by.

Sometimes we will also have shows or events at our house. We are going to keep any music acoustic so it shouldn’t bother anyone. Please do let us know though if we do anything that upsets you. Also, our house is a sober space, so all ages are welcome at our events, and hopefully being a sober space will make events more welcoming for more people.

Our house is available as a meeting space for different groups and organizations. We have a pretty good space for meetings of 10-15 people, and a bigger space that can be useful for larger groups and workshops. If you might want to organize a meeting or workshop or teach-in or whatever, and might want to use our space, please contact us!

We are concerned about the issue of gentrification and what our presence, as white people, might mean. We want to be a part of a community, not part of a process that displaces people from their homes. If you have any input or ideas about these issues we welcome your ideas. We have a lot of work to do. Any people who want to get involved in some workshops on white privilege (and how to work on the racism that so many white people have) are also encouraged to contact us.

This spring, we want to start gardening on our property, and maybe on some vacant properties around the area. If you have a yard you want to garden maybe we can work together so we can all have better access to healthy, fresh, and local food!

We would appreciate it if you would talk to us about any problems or questions you have. We prefer community dialog to the police. Police are not a viable solution to community problems, and having good communication can help us all feel less like we need to resort to authoritarian measures to deal with problems. Feel free to stop by and talk to us, or you can call the house at 303 5449. We are also interested in things such as community gardening, litter cleanup, community workshops, bikes, block parties, really really free market, sobriety, sharing, community projects, construction, renovation, local history etc.

Thank you so much, and we hope to meet more people once it is warmer out! We’ll be on the porch or in the yard working. Stop on by and say hey, and we will do the same!

Mo, Jeremy, Johnny Ray, Grits and Flapjack.

Contact: xveganarchistrvax@gmail.com

804 303 5449

804 300 0023

Stuff that is going on at The Wingnut

Sundays at 12- Food Not Bombs

Wednesdays at 7- Craft Night

Occasionally- acoustic shows, potlucks, fundraising suppers etc.

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