Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Jumping into July!

The Gary-Miller Spotlight project has been in full swing since our Community Kickoff on 6/27/15.

One Tuesday 7/7/15 at 6:30PM, Miller Spotlight held its Visioning Session at the Marshall J. Gardner Center for the Arts (540 S Lake St Gary, IN 46403). 51 community members attended and helped create a vision to help us focus on the next stage of the Neighborhood Spotlight process, action. 

A community vision is a statement that describes where a community wants to be in the future. It also explains what the community wants to do or get done. These types of statements are usually short, with many being just one sentence. They are important because they indicate the primary goals of a community. 

Miller’s will not lay out a precise plan for how to achieve these goals, but it will outline our community objectives clearly. Its main purpose will be to orient everything our community does. From our vision it will be possible for our theme-based Action Groups to come up with the strategies and/or techniques to move forward in a very specific direction to accomplish progress in the revitalization efforts we are planning to undertake.

On July 18, members of the Miller Spotlight crew, the Miller Beach Arts & Creative District and residents at Park Shore Commons got together for a fun filled summer BBQ. Over 70 people attended and 2 professional photographers volunteered to take family pictures for anyone interested. Park Shore Commons has played an active role in the Neighborhood Spotlight process. 

On July 24, Miller and Hobart (our sister community on this project) Spotlight Steering Committees got together in a casual setting to explore Northwest Hobart. NWH is the territory covered in the Hobart Spotlight initiative. Members from both groups were able to get chat on their experiences and exchange ideas on helping revitalize their communities and the concept of collective impact as a whole. Miller and Hobart are looking forward to working together and welcoming next year’s Neighborhood Spotlight Communities into this project. 
During our visioning session a spirited discussion on community engagement occurred. IACED (who has been commissioned by the Legacy Foundation to help with the Neighborhood Spotlight process) suggested that a community discussion surrounding engagement might be beneficial to our neighborhood. So, on Monday 7/27/15 we held the first of several discussions on this subject. If you are interested in this topic, please email Jessie Renslow, via millerspotlight@gmail.com for more info. 
The next major step for our initiative is our Action Group Workshops. Please attend our morning or evening Miller Spotlight Action Group Workshop. (On Wednesday, 8/5/15 from 8-10am & 6:30-8:30pm). They will be held at the Marshall J. Gardner Center for the Arts 540 S. Lake St. Gary, IN 46403.

At the workshops you will get to meet your group, decide your group's schedule and get your theme's plan started. If you are undecided about joining a group please feel free to attend and see what the Neighborhood Spotlight process is all about. You don't have to live in our community, you just need to be interested in furthering the revitalization efforts. All are welcome to join! We are a Legacy Foundation initiative.

What's an Action Group? From the 4,013 comments we collected from our Miller Spotlight Community Conversations 7 themes appeared:

(Click on any link above to sign up for an Action Group)


Community members can join Action Groups that will meet 3-6 times this summer to create plans that will address these themes and be implemented in 2016.

Do you live in NWI and/ or Chicagoland and care about Miller Beach? 
Then please come to the Miller Spotlight Action Group Workshops and Community Engagement Discussions! 
Your opinion matters!!! 

If you need to book an interview please contact our Community Builder, Jessie Renslow via millerspotlight@gmail.com.
We are conducting interviews until 10/31/15.

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