Open Scene: Debuts of Youth’s Views in Downtown Urbana

Common Ground Food Co-operative is committed to supporting a vital and inclusive community and this End especially applies to downtown Urbana where our co-op is located. Given our dedication to democratic governance and improving our community we are especially excited by the possibilities inherent in the Open Scene project.

Open Scene: Debuts of Youth’s Views in Downtown Urbana is a partnership between of the Urbana-Champaign Independent Media Center (UCIMC) and the City of Urbana. Open Scene was awarded a $50,000 Our Town grant from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) in Spring 2016. Through Open Scene, the City of Urbana and the UCIMC will partner together to create a plan for reclaiming the city’s center through arts-based dialogues that directly incorporate the experiences of youth. The five-phase project will be led by a team of community stakeholders, a dozen youth, and four artists from varied disciplines, who together will lead community workshops and create art that identifies the cultural needs of all of Urbana's diverse residents. 

Those who would like to join Open Scene as youth leaders or community stakeholders can pick up application forms at Independent Media Center, City of Urbana, Urbana Free Library, Champaign Public Library, Douglass Branch Library, and Phillips Recreation Center, or apply online at ucimg.org. Ideal candidates should be willing to commit to the year-long project, which includes weekend meetings and events, and youth may participate during afterschool hours. While adult leaders will be volunteers, youth who are involved will receive a $600 stipend. The deadline for youth to apply or to be nominated is November 1, 2016. No one who applies will be refused from participating.The final deadline for adult stakeholders to apply will be Wednesday, October 5th.

There will also be an Open House for Open Scene on October 15th from 5-7pm at the IMC. Common Ground owners and shoppers are urged to take part in Open Scene and to discuss the project with anyone, especially youth aged 16 to 24 who may be interested in participating.