A huge thank you to those of you joined us for the celebration and dedication ceremony for this year's SPEAK Project on such a sultry day! We were delighted to have such a great crowd turn out for our first first official event in our new building!
We would like to extend special thanks to our partners for this year's project, which include Hennepin County, the Kingfield Neighborhoood Association, the Plymouth Church Neighborhood Foundation, VOA Phoenix High Schoool, Pillsbury House, and Youthlink, and especially to this year's participants for sharing their talents with us.
Instructors this year include Dessa of Doomtree, Andrea Jenkins, Nicole Smith, and Elisa McBrayer and Adrienne Doyle, and of course project founder Heather Doyle. Andof course this project would not happen without the countless volunteers taking care of things behind the scenes, but a special shout goes out to Adam Brusic, Sarah Linnes-Robinson, and Ryan Salmon.
Funding for the project was provided in part by the Minnesota Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund as appropriated by the Minnesota State Legislature with money from the vote of the people of Minnesota on November 8, 2008. Thank you people of Minnesota!
The theme of this year's SPEAK project was "Home" which we celebrated on many different levels: the pieces that were created for this year's project will be installed in the Nicollet Square Building which will includes transitional housing for teens; many of the youth who participated in this year's project have themselves dealt with issues of homelessness and finding their place in the world, and obviously this was the first year that components of the SPEAK Project took place in our new home. I think our poets from this year's spoken word group summed it up best when they wrote:
Home is the good, the bad, and the ugly
The constant reminders of true life.
Home is nothing without the people who live there.
Indeed. We thank you for joining us at our new home, and we hope you will enjoy these photos from the celebration:
A happy Heather introduces this year's project
The tremendously talent Latifah shares her talents in the spoken word section of the program
Met with thunderous applause!
Time for a closer look at the artwork
And of course some treats!