Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Our 2015 & 2016 Greatest Hits

Please check out this video that explains Gary's Miller Spotlight Project process and highlights the amazing 1000+ volunteers and 64 community partners that have helped us implement our community plan. 

We premiered this video at our 4th of July in January Event on Saturday, January 28, 2017 at our backbone institution, The Miller Beach Arts & Creative District. 

We have made great progress on our original 29 goals, so the thirty-three people who braved the snow last Saturday, helped add to our community plan. 
If you live, work, study, worship and/ or play in the Miller-Aetna-Glen Ryan footprint of Gary, Indiana stay tuned for how these new ideas will help rejuvenate our community! 

(Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson chatting with our Chairwoman of The Ed./ Child & Youth Programming Action Group, Gretchen Sipp.)

(Our Rice Krispies Treat Sandcastle decorators took their jobs quite seriously)

Friday, January 6, 2017

Harnessing Your Narrative: Steel City Academy

Our Steel City Academy podcasts are live! 

Seventh and ninth graders teamed up on a digital project. Gary's Miller Spotlight volunteers covered equipment management, digital literacy and basics of podcasting in our 4 day-long course called Harnessing Your Narrative. 

They're teaching Gary kids how to harness their narrative through podcasting at Steel City Academy in Glen Park, Gary, Indiana. StoryCorps recorded 12 pair interviews (24 people) in the Miller community of Gary on Saturday 3/19/16 and Sunday 3/20/16. This was the first time StoryCorps in Chicago had recorded in Indiana. 

They rarely do onsite interviews, but our Area Context Group convinced their producers that our neighborhood was ripe with interesting and positive tales to tell. We are looking for more sites to host oral history recording sessions across Gary this winter.

 This will be a way to capture the voices of Gary, Indiana in a virtual museum and be a way to deliver digital literacy workshops. If you're interested in our volunteers running a workshop near you please contact our community builder, Jessica Renslow, via .

We are a Legacy Foundationinitiative and the Miller Beach Arts & Creative District our backbone institution. Click here for the entire YouTube Playist or click on the videos below. 

Access 4 All Hub is Live!

Access 4 All is a multimedia outreach series that was created for Gary’s Miller neighborhood to educate residents, businesses, municipalities and service providers on the importance of inclusion of persons with visible and non visible disabilities within the community.

This multi-platformed project prioritizes addressing the following areas: civic, cultural and recreational, physical environment, and transportation.  

Access 4 All is funded through a grant from ADA-Indiana​. 

Our series is a collaboration between Causes for Change International​, Gary's Miller Spotlight​ Volunteers, The Northwest Indiana Paddling Association, Great Lakes ADA Center​, Almost Fairytales​ and Team Gary, Indiana. 

It premiered as part of the Directed by Women Global Film Festival in the September of 2016.

Please check out our hub at .

Friday, December 30, 2016

Celebrating Ken Parr's Life.

 Our tribute to Gary's Miller Spotlight volunteer, Ken Parr.

It is with very heavy hearts that we have to announce the passing of our dear community member and co-chair of Gary's Miller Spotlight's Transportation and Infrastructure Action Group, Mr. Ken Parr. 

Ken was an inspiration to the entire community. He was recognized last month by the Miller Community Fund Committee as a “Miller All-star.” He was awarded this distinction for his tenacious devotion to blight busting, universal design and alternative transportation initiatives. 

Service was part of Ken’s soul. He was a member of the Miller Garden Club and Gary’s Miller Spotlight’s Property Improvements Committee. In 2015, he helped us construct our community vision for 2025 and our five-year community plan. Ken championed code enforcement, transportation alternatives and urban renewal as he helped us carryout our plan implementation in 2016.

His commitment to keeping Lake Street spic and span coupled with his adherence to public safety led many folks to mistake him for being a city employee. He would just humbly explain to them in his quiet way that he was a volunteer. He diligently cleaned our main drag by hand at least once a day through rain and shine. 

Ken was one of our most ardent promoters for biking activities and universally designed facilities in Gary, Indiana. He helped write a grant to fund 11 bike racks (they are being installed in January 2017). This summer he conducted monthly build-a-bike popup shops at our local farmer’s market. Teaching folks about bike maintenance and the benefits of cycling/ healthy-living were a great joy of his.

He also ran weekly bike tours from May-September and monthly tours from October-April. He lead our riders through all types of weather! He led our community to conduct forty-two bike tours between 2015-2016. These tours promoted community rapport, tourism, litter cleanups and healthy-living. They were attended by 9 regulars (plus an upwards of 30 additional people depending on the weather/ ride’s theme).

Most recently, Ken was helping us start our Take Bike Our Streets initiative. Take Bike Our Streets is a comprehensive program that involves community engagement, economic development and intragenerational environmental education. It has three phases: Planning, Educating, Implementing. Ken was promoting the build-a-bike portion and helping with our Adventures for Everyone (Adaptive Transportation Festival) for the summer of 2017. 

In many ways Lakefront District Cycles will be Ken Parr’s legacy to our city. We hope to keep up our community rides in his honor. Our condolences go out to the Parr family. Ken's amazing dedication to Gary, Indiana will not be forgotten. 

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Access 4 All Survey

Our volunteers are seeking to improve accessibility to public spaces, services and programs in Gary’s Miller Neighborhood and surrounding communities that would allow for full participation of persons with disabilities. We ask that you please complete this survey to help us create a barrier free environment, that will allow for inclusion and participation. This is a collaboration between Causes for Change International​, Great Lakes ADA Center​, Northwest in Paddling Association​, Team Gary, Indiana​, Marquette Park Gary​ and Gary's Miller Spotlight​ volunteers. Thanks!!!
Survey Link Here:

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Man Cave Niteclub LLC Survey Results

On 10/4/16 Jessica E. Renslow (Community Builder, Gary, IN) delivered the results from the data gathered from the community survey concerning the Man Cave Niteclub LLC to the Lake County Liquor Board. The Man Cave Niteclub LLC was seeking a two-way liquor license. The Lake County Liquor Board denied the license on 10/4/16 due to overwhelming community concern. Access the survey presentation at this link: 

Monday, September 12, 2016

The Man Cave Niteclub LLC Community Survey: Voice your comments, questions, concerns here.

The MCC and Gary's Miller Spotlight gathered data from emails received from people living in the area and constructed an online survey concerning The Man Cave Niteclub LLC. The data will be compiled and presented to the Lake County Liquor Board on 10/4/16 at 9am. Jobs and the Economy is one of the 7 themes being addressed in our 29 community goals. Gary's Miller Spotlight volunteers presented our community plan at Wirt-Emerson on Saturday 11/14/15. Check out our full length plan on the Miller Spotlight Facebook page and look for our blog about the project's next phase coming soon. You can also email directly if you'd like a copy of the PDF. You don't have to live in the 46402 or 46403 you just have to care about our revitalization efforts to participate. All are welcome to join!!!