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Aren’t we lucky, Ward? Yes, June, we are.

May 3, 2011

Front Porches + Back Fences = Happy Marriages?

My job involves work for the Front Porch Project, and my blog relates to work by THE BACK FENCE project. The former deals with child welfare, while the latter deals with public transit.

But they’re both dealing in the warm currency of community and togetherness.

This fact is evidenced not only by their homey names, which harken back to picket fences and lemonade stands, but also by their focus on drawing on the “tribe” mindset to make our towns and cities into places we actually want to live.

The idea is that we all want a lot of the same things, so if we just get out of our big houses and cars and talk a bit, we can make those things a reality.

The brainchild of Bill Spriggs, THE BACK FENCE is a weekly online publication, which calls itself “The Newsletter on Matters Concerning the West Corridor Light Rail in Golden, Lakewood, & Denver And an Echo Chamber For Livable Communities.”

I like Spriggs’ focus on hard news issue tempered by a community mind-set. Despite the project title, he seems to be showing us that community is not some quaint, archaic notion from Leave It to Beaver times. It’s our present, and if we know what’s best for us, our future too.

Cheers to front porches, back fences and community on all sides!


4 Comments leave one →
  1. May 4, 2011 11:02 am

    Hey Amy.

    Thanks for the shout out. It was appreciated.

    Unfortunately, the link in your blog was for my old 2.0 website that I was trying out and I have since change locations.

    Your readers can go to, copy & paste the email address, send me an email, and just write “sign me up” as the newsletter is by invitation only. The site also has an archive of all THE BACK FENCE newsletters going back to Dec. 2009.

    Once again, thanks for the write up and thanks for all that you do to make our community a little bit less congested.

    Bill Spriggs

    • avaerewyck permalink
      May 25, 2011 9:24 pm

      My apologies for the error, Bill. Thanks so much for piping up to let everyone know the right place to go for THE BACK FENCE. Feel free to comment here any time with pertinent links to your pages. So nice to have you in the No Car Go community!

  2. pawl permalink
    May 24, 2011 7:16 pm

    This is a big concern for our department at Reed. I may have mentioned something about this before on your blog, but I do bike patrol a lot rather than vehicle patrol. Biking gets me more involved and makes me more accessible than my coworkers who prefer patrolling in the tin cans with windows up. While biking year round for my job isn’t feasible, and the vehicles are accessorized with emergency equipment, my bike patrolling has certainly made me popular amongst the students.
    The bike scene in PDX is pretty cool too. There are so many bike themed events, whether city sponsored like the 2 week long bike festival Pedal-palooza, or the DIY underground Midnight Mystery Rides.
    Bikes are definitely more social than vehicles.

    • avaerewyck permalink
      May 25, 2011 9:26 pm

      Yeah, most places in the country definitely aren’t doing as well as Portlandia on the community-building front. You’re lucky to live there, and you’re to be commended for going the extra mile to utilize cycling to create community.

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