Sustainable Fairfax celebrated another successful “Streets for People” on the afternoon of Sunday, August 25. Hundreds from our community came out to enjoy our public commons without vehicle traffic between Broadway and Elsie Lane on Bolinas Road. The street closure created an entirely different atmosphere, where children and adults alike could play and socialize safely in the street.
Many have commented that it felt like a Mexican or European piazza. One woman’s response when asked about her favorite part of the event was “The people!” And that is the driving force behind the open streets movement- providing an opportunity for community members of all ages and backgrounds to connect and be together in vibrant public spaces, and inspiring people to creatively construct those spaces.
A dedication of the Mountain Bike Mosaic near Mono parking lot kicked off the event. The Youth Music Showcase, put together by Jack Irving, was a big hit throughout the day, featuring exceptionally talented local youth bands and singers. Another highlight was hula hoop instruction to adults and kids provided by Josephine Stoddard of Jellyflow Arts. And, the little ones got a kick out of the Strider Adventure Zone run by Krakatoa Bikes. The Roco dancers put on several performances that wooed the crowd and Sol Studios brought yoga and movement to the street. Iron Springs Pubcollected donations for the Marin Humane Society by selling their artisan rootbeer. Jen Jones, Jenna Chandler and others painted a beautiful street mandala. Hairfax and Jenn Hair Artist gave free haircut services. And, Roots to Branches inspired youth to help create the zero waste kiosks for the event.
In the park, Dawud Zafir started the day with a qigong class, Sienna Smith of Yoga Mountain Studio gave a loving yoga class, and Hal Mosher led Tai Chi.
This event was founded last year by Renee Goddard of Sustainable Fairfax (now also on the Town council) in collaboration with The Town of Fairfax, the Fairfax Chamber of Commerce, and the Fairbuck. Renee was deeply inspired by Ciclovia, a successful car-free program in Colombia that closes 70 miles of roadway every Sunday, allowing two million participants to enjoy the open streets. “The diversity of people in a common space makes for a rich fabric in which each citizen is a thread,” said Goddard.
This year Jennifer Hammond of Sustainable Fairfax led a committee to plan and organize the event, and The Fairfax Chamber and the Fairbuck provided funding. Due to the extraordinary volunteer efforts, the entire event was run on a $1,000 budget. The Fairfax Police and Fire departments provided strong support and assistance in the planning stages and at the event.
Sustainable Fairfax passionately believes in the community building benefits of open streets events and looks forward to many more in the future. To stay on top of future events, like the Streets for People Facebook Page.