Dear Free Space Community & Supporters,

Last July, we signed a one-year lease for our current space at 3458 Minnehaha Avenue in Minneapolis. With our one-year anniversary approaching, and having received feedback from many supporters like you, we had hoped and planned to renew our lease and stay a while longer.

Unfortunately, we regret that we were not able to come to an agreement with our landlord to allow us to stay. (If you’d like to hear more info about why, feel free to ask.)

Our final day of regular open hours at 3458 Minnehaha will be Saturday, June 16, 2012. During the final two weeks of June, we’ll have opportunities for you to come assist with our transition.

The MARS Collective and the Minnehaha Free Space are not going away! We’re currently evaluating potential spaces nearby in south Minneapolis, with an eye to re-opening this summer.

Ways you can help:

We’ve already moved into a new space once… so we know a lot of what needs to be done. We also know that it takes many supporters like you to make a new social and community center a success.

Look for more info about each of these ways to help in the days to come:

  • Donating and fundraising:
    Moving will carry a lot of expenses, and our new location may well have higher rent than we’ve been paying. Now is the perfect time to donate $5, $10, $25 or more every month to sustain the Free Space.
  • Potential new spaces:
    If you happen to have a connection with a progressive landlord or an available space in south Minneapolis, we’d like to hear from you to be able to explore it.
  • Volunteering your time:
    We’ll need all hands on deck for the moving effort and sustaining current projects.
  • Documentation Project and Testimonies:
    We’d like to document the successes and the lessons learned from 3458 Minnehaha, possibly in a zine or video project. If this is something you’d like to help organize, or if you have a story to share, email or talk to us.

Building on Our Success

We’re proud of what you have accomplished at the Free Space with us over the past year. Some highlights include…

  • Dozens of film screenings, speakers, trainings and workshops on topics such as food justice, nonviolent communication, anti-racism, anarchism, meeting facilitation, street medic skills, border politics, queer liberation, and much more
  • Hosting weekly meetings of groups such as the Sunday night art group, the Icarus Project and Occupy Homes
  • Circulating hundreds of books from our radical community library, and making plans to expand the library and hold book and zine events in our next space.
  • Hosting the monthly Radical Families discussion group and Urban Unschoolers group for unschooled kids
  • Offering free computer and internet access, and a welcoming place for kids to hang out, to community members in the Longfellow neighborhood.
  • Serving as a hub for radicals, anarchists and activists visiting from out of town or touring the country to connect, share skills and resources
  • Making dozens of new friends and allies amongst our neighbors, and watching as you’ve built connections that will help make another world possible.

Any project like this is powered by people like you and by the desire for liberation… not by wood and concrete. Join us as we take our next step into space together!

Love and solidarity,
The MARS Collective