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Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The Preservation Project: “Taking Notes” at Wild Goose Creative.

Written by Meghan Kelly
Courtesy of The Preservation Project Website
The Preservation Project, a nonprofit benefiting youth engagement in civic duty through community activism is a collaboration where “art + education + community service = positive change”
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Founders Angie Leonard and Michelle Lowry came up with the name, “through a conversation on our mantra … protecting our habitat and preserving our humanity,” Leonard told me.  By actively encouraging engagement through arts and music, the duo put on the successful “Taking Notes” event Sunday October 16th at the Wild Goose Creative.

(L-R) Meghan Kelly, Michelle Lowry & Angie Leonard
Collaboration and community were themes that pleasantly percolated from the event and infected those lucky enough to be present - so much so, that the dance party lasted through the cleanup (which event goers happily stayed to help out with, and were then rewarded with boxes of cupcakes and candy).

“Family” is what the Preservation Project feels like, and once you get to know the people involved, you are readily drawn into the familial circle - their passion is contagious. Passion is like inspiration in that respect, it can arrive in an unexpected fashion, like a toothache, and once it takes hold the pain doesn’t let up until something is done about it. (Unless of course Vicidin is involved but that’s another story and it’s not really age appropriate)

 Last spring, The Preservation Project took their activism, along with teens from The Ohio Dominican Charles School (where Ms. Lowry teaches), down south to New Orleans and got their hands dirty leading by example through helping others.  In connection with their musical vision, a CD entitled “Operation Nola” was created with help from the wonderful Columbus Music Co-op.

Courtesy of The Preservation Project website
In a time when arts and music are the first to be cut in society, it is a positive sign for our community  to meet such activists who share a clear cut vision for their organization and mission.  That vision, taken from their mission statement is,
“… to create an artistic, sustainable and philanthropic program engaging youth in leadership and community service; while integrating academic growth.”


Josh Smith @ Taking Notes Event
Inspiring youth through community service by collaborating with others didn’t just stop with the arts and music, at “Taking Notes,” these two built a strong, supportive collation that showed up and gave back. UGive, an organization which offers youth opportunities to volunteer, was on hand to sign up 5013C nonprofits and volunteer alike as well as introduce the crowd to their website. Oxfam Action Corps, a grassroots action group looking to raise awareness and solutions to world poverty issues; and The Dick and Jane Project which helps youth write songs were on hand to provide sustenance and educate on their causes.

The Preservation Project is investing in the future generations by teaching our current generations the importance of their fundamental belief; that we are better off creating a world built upon the betterment of ALL, rather than the continual focus on the individual - which has been the “American” way in the past.

Ms. Leonard and Ms. Lowry, along with a very supportive crew and their youth based movement, are looking towards a very promising future. Organizations like these reinforce the community solidarity and loyalty that allow Columbus to be this truly wonderful place we love - Where small locally owned businesses, people, artists, and musicians can come, develop their skills, and thrive for years; all because of the passion for this community’s preservation.

So help preserve their passion by showing their cause some love, go ahead and like them on facebook.  You’ll sleep better knowing music and arts will still be around when you’re too old to strum your guitar and your arthritic hands can’t pick up a drum stick anymore. Show the kids some love now, before it’s too late.
For more information on The Preservation Project, please visit
Follow The Preservation Project on Facebook & twitter

This BusTown Arts & Community Podcast was written & hosted by Meghan Kelly 
BusTown Music Chief Editor is Josh Weiker
BusTown Music General Manager & Producer of the BusTown Arts & Community Podcast is DP Krukrubo

Special Thanks to the wonderful people in Columbus Community!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


Written by Josh Weiker
 You may not realize it, but the local arts group, CloudHaus, has declared war on your city. They are implementing an immense blitzkrieg of creativity which is enhancing various activities and neighborhoods throughout the greater Columbus area.
            ‘So what’s the big deal,’ you ask – Well, have you seen the mural outside of Kobo? How about the fancy yellow and black mosaic mural on the side of Hooligans? (when you’re going down Summit St. from Hudson); Did you go to Independent’s Day 2011? 

Well, these are just a few of the numerous things that CloudHaus has been involved in producing, … and that’s just the beginning.


Photos by Meghan Ralston
CLOUDHAUS  is a collection of local artists, dedicated to collaborating their ideas, time, and talent towards community betterment, through the vector of art and creative expression. They have three main focuses:

“Making Art Approachable and Fun for Everyone”
            One of CloudHaus’s specialties is creating painted murals in conjunction with live concerts. The best part (aside from the proceeds going to charity) is that they actually invite the bar patrons to partake in the painting process. 
Haven’t you ever said to yourself, ‘I should start painting,’ well the folks at CloudHaus agree, and encourage you to join them in their creative merry-mural-making – there are no mistakes, only happy little accidents. While the risks are huge – seeing that any (drunk) patron could come along and try to go Jackson Pollock all over the mural, that’s just the kind of chance the CloudHaus folks will take; all in the name of promoting creativity.

“Making Our Community A Better Place”
Aside from being amazing artists, the group is also tremendously giving. Funds raised from previous CloudHaus events have gone towards funding the Ohio Educational Council, Local Matters, and Pets Without Parents, just to name a few. Their last event – “The Greater Columbus Scavenger Hunt” – collected 100 lbs. of food, which was donated to the Mid-Ohio Food Bank (did I mention that they collected said 100 lbs of food in only 8 hours!).   

"We usually split our revenue 50/50 between ourselves and whichever charity we're supporting at the event."- Cloudhaus

“Having Fun”
  It’s hard to argue when someone, or better yet, a group of people is focused on ‘having fun,’ so I’m not going to. Instead, I’ll refer back to their latest creative conglomerate, “The Greater Columbus Scavenger Hunt” (presented by CloudHaus, don’t be fooled by imitators) – This was not your ordinary run-of-the-mill scavenger hunt [go to this place, find a clue that leads to the next place, etc]. 

Instead it was more like an ‘All-Over Columbus IronMan Challenge of Wits and Will,’ which was super fun. The goal of the event was primarily to collect items for charity, but also to discover the wacky world within our own backyard of Columbus. 
Team Anonymous Swag (L-R Anita Kwan & Angie Leonard)

It was truly brilliant: each item, task, or trivia question had a set point value, and your team has to complete/collect as many tasks/items as possible in 8 hours; the team with the most points wins. If you ever hear of another CloudHaus Scavenger Hunt – DO IT ! Get a solid team, of ambitious, adventure-seeking party goers, and have a ridiculous amount of fun trying to conquer their challenges.

Team Anonymous Swag on the prowl
Not to give too much away, but just so you can understand how creatively awesome, and unlike any other scavenger hunt this event is, here are a few examples from the last Hunt (not all items on the list are as hard/outlandish as these, but these were a few of my favorites):


Items to collect:
  • Two different Religious Pamplets (extra points if they have illustrations)
  • Life sized cut-out of James Franco
  • A cassette of Will Smith’s Big Willie Style
  • At least 4 Pogs
  • A velvet painting of some sort of predatory animal, such as a lion, or a wolf          

  • What was the name of the now-demolished amusement park in Clintonville, which was at one time the largest amusement park in the world?
  • Who had the longest term as Governor of Ohio? Here’s a hint: He might have the most boring statue in Columbus.
Tasks: (required photo or video proof)
    Photo by Angie Leonard
  • Find all three statues of Christopher Columbus in Downtown Columbus (One member must point toward India in each picture)
  • Buy a homeless person a hot meal
  • Shave only the top of your head simulating the likeness of George Costanza’s Bald spot.
  • Someone on the team must get ‘Side Steps’ as a feature of their hair-doo. Ice, Ice, baby.
  • Get a picture with Eric Clapton
  • Write a nice note and leave it on a stranger’s window
  • Photo by Angie Leonard
  • Carve a pumpkin. I don’t know why we’re giving you points for this. You should be doing this anyway. It’s almost Halloween.
Whether its holding down a gallery, hosting public demos, creating murals, funding local charities, or finding ingenious ways to blend live music with live art [See: Dance Floor mural paintings @ Independent’s Day 2011], CloudHaus is emerging as a creative locomotive that just keeps gaining speed. I implore you to get out and support these folks, their wonderful arts and events, and their charities. Who knows, maybe your neighborhood is next … ?

For more information on Cloudhaus, please check out
Catch Cloudhaus on facebook & twitter
BusTown Arts & Community Special Report was hosted by DiePreye (DP) Krukrubo
Special Thanks to Jared Cloudhaus, Daniel Randle and all the amazing members of Cloudhaus for letting BusTown Music run amok on such an amazing event! 
Shouts out to...
Anita Kwan, Co host & founder of
Angie Lenard, Co-founder of The Preservation Project

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