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Thursday, July 31, 2008

What do you think about urban green space?

I'm actually an ambassador of 10,000 Steps and love, love, LOVE talking about them! Old Oakland Neighbors is partnering with the project for special events in our two historic square parks, Jefferson and Lafayette in our neighborhood. I've been interviewed by them for the oral history segment of the project. I'm actively finding La Borinquena customers with memories and photos of the parks for Sue and Bruce to interview.

It's been a hectic week so I'm gonna do some cut n' pasting since Sue did a great job writing her event up...You'll hear more from me later!


10,000 Steps, an interactive community-based project designed to increase awareness of historic parks in downtown Oakland, invites you to share your story at one of their upcoming greening events. On Friday, August 1, First Friday, 10,000 Steps will act as stewards of Frank Ogawa Plaza in the vicinity of the Oakland Art Gallery (Kahn's Alley near City Hall) from 5-8PM.

Equipped with a multifunctional workcart made from re-used materials, 10,000 Steps will invite passers-by to engage in park maintenance as well as story-telling: tell them why urban green space is important to you. Your stories will be added to their website,, an-ever growing record of Oaklanders' relationships to the parks.

10,000 Steps is a unique collaboration between marksearch (Sue Mark and Bruce Douglas), an independent artistic cultural research team, and the Friends of Oakland Parks and Recreation. In this two-year stewardship project, the artists are working with neighbors and community groups that surround four historic parks in downtown Oakland – Jefferson, Lafayette, Lincoln and Madison Square Parks – to beautify and draw attention to green urban public space.

The team has co-hosted many park greening events in and around the parks: clean-ups, picnics, and community gardening. Future events include the creation of butterfly gardens in Madison and Lincoln Square Parks as well as a youth bench-building project at the Lincoln Rec Center. Check out the 10,000 Steps schedule (in the ‘about’ section) at . 10,000 Steps will culminate in a series of permanently marked self-guided walking tours in downtown Oakland that will lead people to these parks.

This project is generously supported by the Creative Work Fund, Friends of Oakland Parks and Recreation and local community groups and businesses.

For more information, contact Sue Mark or Bruce Douglas at, or Kathy Raymond, Friends of Oakland Parks & Recreation, 510-465-1850.

marksearch || cultural researchers

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