If you ever get the chance to own a post office, do it.
The US government doesn’t own the post office buildings (or the land), they lease. And you might guess they don’t negotiate a bargain. You could eat a foot-long Meal Deal from Subway every hour of every day the post office is open and still have cash left in your pocket.
From the file “Things learned in a small town post office, with lots of experience of Subway lunches”
In no time, we received this response from J. Vernal Dilworth (who visited Green River last year):
You’re right we need to stop by Green River.
Riders,I’d like to make a motion that we stop by Green River and take refuge in the Epicenter.See attached map.
And even a red star! Yesss!!!
… especially those lovely extra-long silver ones from architecture school.We have a massive amount of pin-up space now, don’t we? Approximately 192 square feet of homasote (the main strip is about 32’ long!). It’s awesome, and we’re going to cover it in all of the work we’ve done over the past two years and
We even put a baby strip on the North wall.
Announcing a future Frontier Fellow: Zorth Pilonieta!
Zorth is a student and bike racer living currently in Tampa, Florida.
A pre-architecture student at USF, Zorth (his real name!) applied to us for a summer experience that will define his upcoming MArch education. We’re happy to bring Zorth here at the second week of May, where part of his Epicenter-directed time will be spent on Habitat House project. On-site, he will learn by doing.
His avid interest and passion for cycling will no doubt play a role in his self-directed projects during his fellowship. Of the recent three Fellow selections (Nicole, Miles, and Zorth), Zorth will be the first to arrive in just over a month from now.
If you haven’t noticed, we’ve been processing the many applications we are receiving for the Frontier Fellowship. This position allows us to bring on enthusiastic young professionals for a month-long tenure at the Epicenter. It’s a great opportunity to come live and work in Green River, to quickly become part of this context and the town, and to produce beautiful artifacts. We accept applications from any background. Join us. Apply for the Frontier Fellowship here.
American Landscapes (part of a series shot in 2009) by Miles Mattison
Miles is a photographer who currently resides in San Francisco, California.
My work stems from a fear of the direction our species is headed, in almost all considerations. More specifically, the impact that our existence, no our thriving, has on the land in which we occupy. These fears draw me to not only our interactions with the natural world, but also the results of these interactions. This planet has its own power, one that we as a population, no longer respect as our elders did. I produce photographs of all scales, drawings, and collect artifacts to process my own experience with these interactions.
Join us. Apply for the Frontier Fellowship here.
Reflections (part of a series, 2010-present) by Miles Mattison
Miles is definitely the most fun and interesting phone interview we’ve had in long time, and we cannot wait for him to join us in Green River for late July - mid August! He might even bike from San Francisco to Green River… wow.
Today is Powell’s 177th birthday.
Powell (right) with Tau-gu, a Paiute, 1871-1872.
John Wesley Powell is most famous for his three-month river trip down the Green and Colorado rivers that included the first passage of European Americans through the Grand Canyon in 1869.
In 1869 he set out to explore the Colorado and the Grand Canyon. Gathering nine men, four boats and food for 10 months, he set out from Green River, Wyoming on May 24. Passing through dangerous rapids, the group passed down the Green River to its confluence with the Colorado River (then also known as the Grand River upriver from the junction), near present-day Moab, Utah and completed the journey on August 13, 1869.The expedition’s route traveled through the Utah canyons of the Colorado River, which Powell described in his published diary as having, “wonderful features—carved walls, royal arches, glens, alcove gulches, mounds and monuments. From which of these features shall we select a name? We decide to call it Glen Canyon.”
Interesting fact: John Wesley Powell only had one arm! At the Battle of Shiloh, Powell lost most of one arm when struck by a minie ball. The raw nerve endings in his arm would continue to cause him pain the rest of his life.
Powell died on September 23, 1902 and in recognition of his national service was buried in Arlington National Cemetery.
For more information on John Wesley Powell and the history of the Green River visit the John Wesley Powell River History Museum located in Green River, Utah.
MORE WALK MORE TALK by Nicole Lavelle and collaborators
I am from San Francisco and also from Oregon. These places are very important to me and permeate my work. Sometimes I make art projects and sometimes I make design projects. I make objects, I make moves, I make friends, and I often speak without thinking. I am available for collaboration, hire, walks and talks.
I am currently Director of Creative Projects at Pinball Publishing, an eco-friendly, design-savvy offset print shop located in Portland. I do print and web design, marketing, and social media for Scout Books, a powerful publishing platform and print format. I am editor of Bangback, an online journal dedicated to print culture. I worked as an Art Director at the Portland Mercury, and was the Director of the Friends of Graphic Design at Portland State University. I am involved as artist and and audience at FIELD WORK. I collaborate often with Justin Flood and Sarah Baugh. I am the designer for the Open Engagement: Art and Social Practice conference, taking place in May 2011 in Portland.
I studied art and design at Portland State University, and am a Project M Alumni.
Miss Lavelle comes to Green River for the month of November in 2011, and discussions are in the works on her foci while a Frontier Fellow (potentially a non-traditional documentarian of sorts?). She’s going to be an excellent addition to the team.
Apply for the Frontier Fellowship here.
Reading Frenzy (DO!) by Nicole and collaborations
Portland Mercury Southeast Neighborhood Guide by Nicole and collaborators
An AmeriCorps Volunteer in Service to America (VISTA) position has just been posted on the AmeriCorps website for a position at the Epicenter. This position is in partnership with the City of Green River and United Way of Southeastern Utah.
The VISTA member in this position would focus on developing affordable housing within the small, rural town of Green River. They will work in the office of the Epicenter, report weekly to the City of Green River and monthly to United Way.
On a daily basis, the VISTA member will:
// work towards identifying and removing barriers to affordable housing in Green River
// evaluate and quantify needs in the community regarding affordable housing
// seek out resources available to residents and developers to create and maintain affordable housing
// develop the Affordable Housing Plan for the City of Green River in partnership with the Planning and Zoning Commission (which Jack sits on currently)
// network with local, state, and federal agencies that provide affordable housing resources and programs and bring that information to the attention of Green River residents
Applicants must be 18 years or older, be willing to live and work in Green River, Utah, for a year minimum, and be skilled in organization, communication (English language), and self-motivation. Experience with non-profit work, community organization, affordable housing programs, grant writing, governmental affairs, and an interest in small businesses/entrepreneurs will also be evaluated. College graduates are preferred. APPLY HERE.
This VISTA position should not be viewed as a “job.” Instead, it is an opportunity to serve America, to engage in a community, and use your talents to help people. A small living stipend is provided ($858/mo) along with a relocation allowance of $500, a health insurance benefit, training, housing assistance, and the choice of an education award ($5550) or a cash award ($1500) at successful completion of your year term.
This is a great opportunity for those who are interested in the redefinition of the role of professionals to be focused on the fact that “people and place matter.” If you have an ethic of the role of a socially-responsible citizen, where people are seen as individuals and your education is not anything that should be seen as a commodity for sale, this is an opportunity for you.
Contact us at email@example.com or call 435 564 3330 if you have any questions. More information on the mission of the Epicenter can be found here.
The Epicenter has information on the Single Family Rehab and Renovation program available through the State of Utah Division of Housing and Community Development.
Come by today to speak with us about this valuable resource.
Money and labor, in the form of grants and low-interest loans, are available to what amounts to most of our local population. Income limits are higher than even USDA Rural Development 502 Loans.
This program can provide direct and leveraged grants totaling $17,500 for residents who are over the age of 62, live with children under age 10, or are disabled.
But even if you do not meet that targeted population, low-interest loans (0-3%) are available to you to solve health, safety, and energy-efficiency issues.
As long as you own the home (and use it as your primary residence) you will likely qualify. If you own a mobile home and the land it sits on, this program may be able to be used to remove the old manufactured home and replace it with a new, stick-built, energy-efficient home.
The Epicenter is able to help you learn about this resource, apply, and/or design your new home or renovations. Come by today to 180 South Broadway.
This resource, and others offered by the Epicenter, are detailed at this link.
This week, Jack is at a conference in Springdale, Utah learning about Section 502 Mutual Self-Help Housing Loan program. This program is used primarily to help very low- and low-income households construct their own homes. The program is targeted to families who are unable to buy clean, safe housing through conventional methods. Families participating in a mutual self-help project perform approximately 65 percent of the construction labor on each other’s homes under qualified supervision. The savings from the reduction in labor costs allows otherwise ineligible families to own their homes. If families cannot meet their mortgage payments during the construction phase, the funds for these payments can be included in the loan.
Jack is also scoping out the nearby Zion National Park for our first ever visit to the park (hopefully to take place this Spring)! The park is famous for The Narrows and terrifying Angel’s Landing Trail. Any tips on Zion (when to hike the Narrows and/or Angel’s Landing or when the park is least crowded) would be greatly appreciated. FYI: For all you non-Utahns (like us)… Zion is pronounced Zy-in not Zy-on by the locals.
But, don’t you worry! Maria, Hayley, and Justin are holding down the fort in Green River until Jack’s return on Friday.
Every time we drive to Castle Dale via Ferron we always have the pleasure of seeing some bizarro other-worldy sculptures on the side of the road. And, now we know the story!
Master machinist and welder Vaughn Reid has been busy in his retirement, allowing his imagination and sense of humor to come to the forefront in creating UFO sculptures and an array of other products at his “Museum of Creativity” in Emery County.
It warms our hearts to see creative people making things in our county! Side note: Vaughn and his museum remind us of The Museum of Wonder in Alabama (our previous home). Visit Butch Anthony it out if you’re ever in Alabama.
Read more about Vaughn and the Museum of Creativity here.
(via Katherine Brown via the Salt Lake Tribune)