The Women’s March felt like a ray of hope in an otherwise dark start to 2017. But as this past week has proven, we had no idea how dark it could get, or how nimble we would need to be to protest this administration’s unAmerican edicts. For parents, it will never be easy, on weekends filled with birthday parties and basketball games, to join an impromptu rally. But Hootenanny Art House in Park Slope is making it possible to for families to be politically active at times they can plan for–Monday afternoons and evenings, starting today. Their Monday Activist Coffee Hour from 3:30 to 4:30pm, and BYOB Activist Happy Hour from 6 to 7pm will provide a kid-friendly space and guidance to make calls, write letters and take action together.
“Since the election, we have been looking for ways we could mobilize our community towards participation in the resistance,” said Kira Smith, co-owner of Hootenanny. “Having an art-based family community center in Brooklyn, we first felt the need to show our support to the people of color, people of Muslim faith, LGBT, families and all women who walk through our doors each week and are being threatened. With the fundraising and new Monday Activism Coffee and Happy Hours, we also hope to inspire activism among families who might not be able to be on the front lines, but care deeply about peace, justice, the environment, and civil rights.”
Since 2007, Kira and her husband Pete Sinjin have been using their Park Slope space for music, art and dance classes as well as community gatherings to raise money for organizations in need, like Pete Seeger’s Clearwater Foundation or the New York Aquarium after Hurricane Sandy. Most recently, Kira organized the sold-out “Small but MIGHTY Hootenanny” Concert featuring Pete at The Bell House, which, together with events including a sing-along fundraiser the weekend after the election, have raised over $10,000 for the ACLU, Planned Parenthood, 350.org, Southern Poverty Law Center, The International Rescues Committee and Standing Rock.
This Monday, January 30th, they will have follow-up postcards to the Women’s March to send to senators as well as other action opportunities including texts and calls suggested by the ACLU and Planned Parenthood. Kids are welcome, as are donations for coffee, stamps and printing. RSVP here for the coffee hour or happy hour, or both. As the invitations make clear, you can stay for 10 minutes or the full hour–whatever you have time for.
Activist Coffee Hour 3:30-4:30pm
Activist BYOB Happy Hour 6-7pm
Mondays beginning Jan. 30 at Hootenanny Art House
428 15th Street, Brooklyn, NY 11215