Friday, July 15, 2011

Brightwood Park gets an infoshop

Before the Dream City Collective came along, the District had been without an honest-to-goodness infoshop for several years, as places like the Brian McKenzie Infoshop and the Peoples’ Media Center had closed down in the late 2000s.

After a few years of nomadic existence, tabling at events but having no space to call its own, Dream City filled that void by setting up shop at a space on Monroe Street in Columbia Heights in February of 2011. Just a few short months later, however, the space changed ownership and Dream City was summarily ousted.

Losing space often means the end for collectives like Dream City. Fortunately for them, Fhar Miess, Bike House member and proprietor of Sumoud Cycle Works, and his partner had recently purchased 5525 Illinois Avenue NW with the intent of using the lower level for bike frame building. Miess had a vision for using the building’s main floor for community events, and when he found out that Dream City was in need of a space, a new collaboration was born.

Dream City held their first event at 5525 Illinois Avenue in early July. Collective member Vallan told me they intend to have events several times a month, including two movie nights (on the first and third Wednesday of the month) and two “open days”, during which community members are invited to stop by, hang out, peruse Dream City’s reading materials, and enjoy a coffee or a lime spritzer (I had a lime spritzer when I was there and it was scrumptious). Vallan says that he and the other collective members aim to make Dream City “a hub, and a space for the promotion of grassroots projects.”

The Dream City Collective is open to new ideas and new projects. You can reach them through Facebook or through their blog. Or stop by on their next Open Day: Saturday, July 30 from 12 noon through 8pm

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