By Wedge on October 23, 2012
Adah and Roxanne
Amy Cadovich—“Play, play, play!”
Beth Rutkowski – A world record hopper!
Ed Morykwas – Thank you so much for the beautiful photos!
Eric Lacey – A world record hopper!
Dalbir and Manjeet Sethi
New Solutions Group
Jakki Kirouac and Melinda Anderson from the Detroit Design Festival
Jane Van Velden
Melinda MeMe Anderson
Jon from the Detroit Aircraft Corporation
Kim Tandy from University Commons
Kirk Mayes from the Brightmoor Alliance
Larry Baranski and Cory Joyrich from the Detroit Institute of Arts
Matthew Clayson from the Detroit Creative Corridor Center
Mike, Kara, and Rachel from FUZE
Rishi Jaitly from the Knigth Foundation
Ryan Epstein from Clean Detroit
Sol Neelman – Wired Magazine
Sue Mosey and Karen Gage from Midtown Detroit Inc.
Tamarra from DTE who didn’t turn off our electricity!
By Wedge on September 23, 2012
It’s official: The World Record for Longest Hopscotch was set in Detroit. The official distance is measured to be 3.75 miles, a .35 mile longer than the previous world record. A week of varying weather conditions, unforeseen interactions, and exciting chalking mayhem concluded today with a celebration. Beautiful chalk murals were created, kids and adults played their favorite games,and the community collaborated together.
This deserves a much longer post, full of thank-yous, and many stories of the people who we were so fortunate to meet along the way. In the meantime, though, enjoy the photos that have surfaced in Twitter and Instagram, photos that came from the city of Detroit:
By dylan on September 20, 2012
Due to the delaying rain fall on Tuesday evening, we had to make up some ground yesterday. So the Wedgies set out early in the morning and chalked until dusk. We were joined by volunteers along the way, including some great people from places like The Heidelberg Project and Summer in the City.
The first mile marker and second mile marker were met yesterday, meaning we chalked about 1.3 miles total. From the Fox Theatre in Downtown, up to the Heidelberg Project, taking a turn at Great Lakes Roasting Company, and finally ending at Slow’s To Go.
It was also the start of the Detroit Design Festival yesterday, and we have been seeing the great big stickers on the sidewalks that indicate where all of the happennings are, well, happening. One that we are extremely excited about is the Pop-Up Playground being created across the street from The HP, being created by a Detroit-based kid’s architecture firm called Cog Studio in collaboration with Kaboom (an awesome organization that creates play across the country). The course goes past this happening, plus many others, so if you find yourself mapless, just follow the Hopscotch course!
Last night was the incredible Detroit Design Festival Launch party- a schwanky little event at the Fisher Building where all the trendy people in Detroit came out, mingled, listened to music, and celebrated the begin of the days dedicated to art and design. There was a glimpse of what to expect out there, and, based on the people that we met last night-we know that this Festival is going to rock.
Such an amazing time painting with Heidelberg on Wednesday. What a fantastic group of people (and MAN can they paint. Guess we should have expected that one… ).
The Heidelberg Project is rooted in “connecting the dots” to establish greater respect, communication and creative expression among all people. As a humble partner with Hopscotch Detroit, it is one of our most tangible opportunities to walk the walk and support the creation of a hopscotch aimed at connecting the community.
By dylan on September 19, 2012
Today the Wedgies and a group of volunteers woke up from their chalky dreams to find a grey sky spitting rain down. It wasn’t coming down hard, but it was just enough to make someone go, “ugggghhhh”.
But what can you do? So we postponed the chalking, hoping that the rain would just, well, stop. And it did! When we finally took to the sidewalks the sun was shining and ambitions were high. The kind people at Quicken Loans and other volunteers met up at Campus Martius and for the next few hours we worked hard. It took about 2 hours to reach the half mile goal, the first 8th of the course is complete stretching from the front of the Compuware building, and around Broadway street.
There was a little lunch break, then chalking began again. About an hour and 2/10th of a mile into the second half, the clouds began to roll in. And they started to spit again. Unfortunately we had to pack it up a little early, but we’re so proud of what we accomplished today, and grateful for the people who came to assist us in the beginning of this adventure.
But sometimes, it rains, and there’s nothing you can do. It’s incredible.
By Wedge on September 17, 2012
It’s been months of planning, and anticipating, breaking a world record. That’s what the original plan was at least, just to break a record. But over the past few months, in testing and planning, and practicing, we have discovered what else this project could offer.
For the purposes of testing materials, we threw down some courses at various different events throughout the city. Every time we did this we saw amazing new things. The way that kids and adults interact with it, the spout of drawing and creativity that it sparked, the conversations it induced – all incredible, and all unexpected.
Who knew that this simple idea would come to mean so much to so many people? In it’s inception, the super long hopscotch course was just, well, awesome. It’s purpose was to add value to the sidewalks, to get people to see them in a new way, and maybe to add some positive light on the city. But through the creative process we’ve discovered that there is a wide array of how it is interpretted.
But that’s not for us to decifer. No-we are just here to create this super awesome, super long course, for the people of Detroit, and around the world (somebody in Russia heard about this). All we can do is grab our chalk, and rock out the longest course we possibly can.
We’ll be updating this space everyday this week. The Wedgies are going to be chalking for 6 hours every day-I can assure you that Friday’s video post will be essential to your weekly entertainment.
The map of the course is on this website, we’ll constantly tweeting our location from @WedgeDetroit. If you want to join in the chalky fun, come on down!
By Wedge on September 12, 2012
Playworks is an amazing organization that is dedicated to improving the health and well-being of children by providing and improving opportunities for physical activity and safe, meaningful play. Their initiative is one that has impacted communities across the country, including those in Detroit. In short, they believe that playing is good for kids, and they provide safer and varying opportunities for them to have fun.
Naturally, when the super awesome people from this super awesome organization found out about Hopscotch, they wanted to come play. And we couldn’t be more excited that Playworks will be hosting a recess at the finishing point of the course on September 22nd. RECESS! Not only will there be a super long hopscotch course and tons of chalk, but Playworks is bringing along your favorite recess activities like four square, and jump rope. You should definitely come out and PLAY!
As we mentioned, Playworks rocks. To learn more about what they do, click this link: http://www.playworks.org/
By Wedge on September 10, 2012
My name is Angelica Proffett, born in Detroit, Michigan and raised on the east side of Detroit. I attended Bates Academy (k-8), Renaissance High School, and Oakland University for my Bachelors degree and now pursuing my Masters in Public Administration degree at OU. In my spare time enjoy working out, including jogging with Run This Town Detroit (RTT) in downtown Detroit, dancing, traveling and church. I currently work for Oakland University in the Academic Affairs and Provost office where I assist with the planning and implementation of a wide variety of academic events. I have an orange tabby cat, an all white pit-bull and a motorcycle! I enjoy meeting networking and volunteering.<br />I want to get involved with Hopscotch Detroit, because I believe everyone holds on to their childhood. This is a great way to get Detroit community involved, have fun and make a difference in the lives of our youth and neighborhoods while having fun! This project is just one way to bring together a wide variety of people from young to old, male and female, African American or Asian American, etc. I want people to know Detroiters have pride, unity, discipline and scholarship. I look forward to helping as many people/organizations as I can.
I’m Nina and I’m happy to see young people getting excited about Detroit. My friends from U of M designed and organized hopscotch and I am looking forward to helping enact this community event together. I haven’t played hopscotch since I was a little kid so I am excited to get back to my childhood roots!
I am a long time lover of all things Detroit! I had lived in the suburbs for many years and always enjoyed coming into the city for dining, or going to sporting events and entertainment activities, like the DEMF, Jazz Festival, Grand Prix, Hoedown, Winter Fest, etc., as well as being a member of the DIA and volunteering with various<br />community-oriented groups to help clean the streets, provide meals for those in need or help plant trees. I moved to downtown Detroit in June of this year and can now enjoy all that the city has to offer without the long drive. I spend more time walking or bicycling and hardly use my car anymore except for going to and from work. I am very happy and excited about getting involved in this project. I think this will be a great venue to showcase Detroit and one that can provide positive energy and influence for children of all ages!
“Hopscotch sounds like a really fun project, and one more positive way to link Detroit neighborhoods–and neighbors–doing something that’s purely fun, and even kind of silly! I think we need to share that silliness as much as we need to share our concerns and efforts in revitalizing Detroit! I’ve just moved into the city (June) and, though I was born in Detroit and grew up in the suburbs, I’ve not lived in MI for over 30 years due to my job locations. Now that I’m retired, I’m very excited to be back near my family and am also enthusiastic about the city itself. I have special interests in urban agriculture and environmental justice because of my professional background (college professor and administrator). And, despite the long hiatus, I’m finding that Detroit readily feels like home to me”
Jane Van Velden
“Even when faced with extraordinary challenges, children can emerge from the mire of circumstance with an optimistic perspective. An innocent optimism that no discouragements can smother. They imagine a better world and improvise novel solutions to perceived problems. Every person deserves a blissful childhood, uninhibited by marginalization. Through Hopscotch Detroit, and the wonderful people behind it, we can look at Detroit- recontextualized through the filter of a child’s eyes; harbor a renewed excitement, resilience, and curiosity. I want to look at the city of Detroit with a childlike wonder. Let’s take a short bouncing leap of faith- a hop- pour our energy into it, bring people together, celebrate life, and play a role in the transformation from ideality to reality. A junior at the University of Michigan, and proud member of TEDxUofM, I am always yearning to explore and connect with inspiring people. I’m Jane, and I’m really excited to be a part of this.”
“I just love Detroit and I love supporting any organizations that are committed to it’s excellence – especially in creative ways. This project jumped out at me. I loved hopscoth as a kid and I think that this is such a unique way to get the community involved and on the streets – genius!!”
By Wedge on September 9, 2012
That kid is going to be so cool…
By Wedge on September 7, 2012
A few weeks ago, we received an email from Better Block Detroit, a group that seeks to revitalize abandoned lots in the city and restore them for community use. The email asked the team at Hopscotch Detroit if we would collaborate with Better Block and throw a hopscotch course in the North End where they are currently making over a block for the Detroit Design Festival.
Funnily enough, the Wedgies had talked about wanting to reach out to Better Block just a few days before. (Ever seen that John Cusack movie Serendipity?).
So on Tuesday the Wedgies threw down a block-long hopscotch course on East Grand Boulevard between Oakland and St. Antoine, right outside the space that Better Block is transforming into a veritable factory of art and activity.
Ahhhhh, that Deeee-troit collaboration, folks… Can never get enough of it.