30 November 2007

to stay, or not to stay? - the state's façade

I Will Shout Youngstown presents an overview of the possible demolition of the State Theater and what really is behind the historic façade.
"It might be hard to see, but there are whole buildings behind the Davis and Armed Forces Buildings, but very little behind the façade of the State Theater.

Similar to the the set of any theater around the world, the façade is almost like a piece of set design. It's a 1920s advertisement to draw people off the main drag and into the theater."
Design alternatives to tearing down the façade (with pictures) are provided here.

28 November 2007

walkability and the american dream

The Mahoning Valley View gives a spritied critique of the way we transport ourselves in this day and age.
"You see, it is my very strong belief that a true community cannot exist without connectivity - and most importantly, walkability. My version of the American Dream certainly doesn't involve buying a huge, secluded house somewhere in no-man's land... it's more along the lines of a cozy brownstone or bungalow, in a neighborhood dotted with mature trees, sidewalks, front porches, and convenience retail. It involves traffic, sure - but not simply of the motorized variety. It's full of folks walking dogs, walking themselves, riding bikes, pushing strollers, waiting for the #32 bus, or jogging to the quiet thumping of their iPod. It's a dream where I can leave my house and walk to work (at least on days with no out-of-town meetings), walk from work to meetings or a coffee shop, and then walk to a great bistro before heading home to chat with my neighbors and family about the day."
You can read more from the post here.

Looking for Operatunities

The Stage @ The Oakland provides this interesting look at the emerging opera scene in town.
"Did you know that our little rust bucket houses one of the only Opera companies in the state? Opera Western Reserve began 4 years ago on little more than a pile of dreams and a whisper of hope. Oh, and a buttload of talent.

I don't know what it is about this area, but we breed opera singers. The level of talent amongst us is amazing. I mean, we know we harbor some of the most talented singers, actors, dancers, artists, photographers, clothing designers, sculptors, directors, and writers -- but who knew we had a little bunch of mad good barritones, sopranos, and tenors (ughh, tenors) in our midst as well?"

"Most of the aspects of pop culture we love most take root in opera. Operas are notoriously full of love, passion, sex, affairs, betrayal, naivitee, murder, plotting, back-stabbing, fights, assassins, villains and heroes and heroines. Operas usually involve goofy mix ups -- think Three's Company but with every plot sung by the actors as they yuk it up with prat falls. Think The Sopranos but somehow even more Italian. Think every drag show you ever saw, ever, because people are always disguising themsleves as the opposite sex in Opera -- often with dire consequences. Operas don't usually have happy endings, either. They are painful and abrupt, leaving you contemplating deep issues or sometimes sobbing."

There's more to this post. Check it out here.

26 November 2007

milk, cookies, santa, and speed reading

This entire post from First Book Mahoning Valley is awesome:
Join us one and all for the first ever First Book-Mahoning Valley Speed Read
Milk and Cookies with Santa
at the Oakland Center for the Arts
on Tuesday, Dec. 18 at 7:00 pm.

Register now!
We will send you a pledge packet and information on the Speed Read event and First Book- Mahoning Valley. You collect pledges in advance and then come to the event where you will be invited on stage to read as many words as you can in 15 seconds.

Every $2.50 buys a new book for a child, but we need your help!

Not interested in reading, make a donation!

Have a child who loves to read? They can Speed Read as well!

Following the highly hysterical readings, Santa will be on the premises for last minute wishes. The first 500 children will receive a new book.
Milk and cookies will be available, as well as a basket raffle.
The event is free and open to the public. We hope you will Speed Read with us and help end illiteracy in our community.

Have an organization you would like to promote at our event? Just register to read, collect pledges, and when it is your turn to read take a minute (maybe 2) to tell everyone what you do! We want everyone who is revitalizing Youngstown to be heard !
To register or request additional information, email amyneral@yahoo.com.

Rosetta Stone Cafe Set to Open on W. Federal

Defend Youngstown reviews of handful of stories in its most recent post, primarly recent developments of two cafes/restaurants downtown - the new Rosetta Stone Cafe and the relocating Bean Counter Cafe

Also . . .
"You now can purchase a Defend Youngstown t-shirt of your choice @ BW3's in the downtown.

Nothing makes a better stocking stuffer for your family's own little community activist or for Uncle Gino living in Clearwater than an original Defend Youngstown shirt. 3 designs to choose from (new upgraded designs for BW3s). Get them now for the holidays while supplies last!

Shirts are $20. Proceeds benefit the Wick Park Restoration Project."

25 November 2007

Tod Engine Heritage Park Progress Report

The Youngstown Steel Preservation blog has provided its review of the last year. You can read the post here.
"2008 will be a big year for us, and if everything goes as planned it will be the year that the Tod Engine is fully enclosed in a permanent building and restoration work can begin in earnest."

20 November 2007

CitiStat time for Youngstown?

Youngstown Moxie nails it with this post:
"Racism is not only a belief that race is a primary determinant of human traits and capacities and that racial differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular race. It is also an attitude, which subordinates a person or group because of their race. Class too is an attitude. In Youngstown race is inextricably intertwined with class, which is defined as a discriminatory attitude based on distinctions made between social and economic classes.

Attitudes about race and class must be addressed in conjunction with the implementation of a program such as CitiStat if we are to begin to make the changes needed in order to create a vital, sustainable city. The loss of citizens to suburban sprawl is not good for our city or for our planet. Steering growth to the urban core produces numerous benefits; It saves millions in public resources by building on existing infrastructure rather than sinking funds into new roads, sewers, and utility lines. It makes cities more vibrant and attractive, reduces carbon emissions and it makes the centers of job growth more accessible to the urban poor."
Want to learn more about CitiStat? You can read the entire post here.

17 November 2007

the history of the Mahoning County Courthouse

The Mahoning Valley History Blog presents a fascinating lesson about the construction of the courthouse downtown.

The cornerstone was laid on June 11 1908 and the structure was composed of lavish terra cotta, marble and Honduran mahogany as county leaders attempted to “build the finest courthouse between Chicago and New York.”

Wonderful pictures throughout the post are displayed, including the first courthouse downtown by the amazing african-american architect P. Ross Berry in 1876.

You will also learn about how Mahoning County came to be (after forming from both Trumbull and Columbiana counties), Youngstown's only execution, and how the historic preservation of the building in the late 1980s won national preservation awards.

10 November 2007

the voters have spoken

Mayor Williams provides his opinions on the recent election at his blog
"The citizens selected six new members of the City’s legislative body and returned an incumbent (congratulations to all of the winners.) On second thought, congratulations also to all of those who had the courage and conviction to put their names on the ballot and go through the grueling campaign process, even if in the end they were not the elected candidate.

The voters also chose to instill greater accountability in the City’s Park & Recreation Department through the approval of three out of four charter amendments. (Thank You)"
Click here to read more.