Be the Change Weekly Community Update 2-19-2021

“It’s in that convergence of spiritual people
becoming active and active people becoming spiritual
that the hope of humanity now rests.” ~ Van Jones
What is Community Solar? How is it different from rooftop solar? Is it the future of local, distributed clean energy? Can it be done in Ohio? Learn about this promising approach and get your questions answered. More here.

Del Sroufe is an award winning chef and author of NT Times best selling cook books.

ONE SEAT LEFT! Del shares his secrets for making plant based food delicious. You will prepare an entrée, a side dish, and a dessert. Limited to 8 individuals. Register and more info here.

Meet behind the Nature Center.

SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 28 (2-4 PM) Reconnect with nature during a guided walk in the woods with Cindy Lanese. More Info and Register. $10 and limited to 10 participants.

New Date: Our next Town Hall on Public Banking in Ohio will take place March 2nd at 2 pm
Details here.

Join the Town Hall and learn about the Ohio Coalition that advocates for a new public banking option to address the needs of our communities that are struggling during the pandemic. A public bank can support our locally owned businesses, invest in affordable housing, renewable energy, green infrastructure projects, and more!

At this new Simply Living forum, you will hear from a panel of climate and environmental activists about the draft Columbus Climate Action Plan. Led by Cathy Cowan Becker. Get all the details here, including access to the Draft Climate Plan & new Action Alert

Simply Living is partnering with the Ohio Community Rights Network in a new Film Series. See the website here and below for the first film on Sunday, March 28.

Sunday, March 28, 2 pm
What Is Democracy? Documentary Film
Virtual Event – Link to watch the film 24 hours in advance will be provided. Discussion and Q&A with Director Astra Taylor
    The film digs deep to explore democracy in ancient Athens to capitalism’s roots in medieval Italy; from modern-day Greece grappling with financial collapse and a mounting refugee crisis to the United States reckoning with its racist past and the growing gap between rich and poor. Featuring a diverse cast—including celebrated theorists, trauma surgeons, activists, factory workers, asylum seekers, and former prime ministers—this urgent film connects the past and the present, the emotional and the intellectual, the personal and the political, in order to provoke and inspire.

To honor Earth Day 2021 the second film in the series will explore the Rights of Nature, an exciting new approach to save our ecosystems using the legal court system!

Sunday, April 25 at 2 pm
Invisible Hand (Rights of Nature Documentary)
Virtual Event Link to watch the film 24 hours in advance provided after Registration.
 From Executive Producer Mark Ruffalo comes the world’s first documentary film on the Rights of Nature Movement,  a “plot-twisting, eye-opening” story about the current global battle between capitalism and democracy where the fight for our survival is at stake. Invisible Hand tells the story of 3 different communities and the residents of those communities standing up to challenge the current environmental laws and system to protect their health as well as nature’s. The Q&A discussion after the film will include the Director Josh Pribanic (Not yet confirmed) as well as Tish O’Dell, Board member of the Ohio Community Rights Network, and Markie Miller of Toledoans for Safe Water. 

“If we stand for change, we can spark a popular movement
with power, influence, magic and genius.”
~- Van Jones


Together, we know that The THRIVE Agenda is the best pathway we have to reorient our society away from never-ending crises and towards a just recovery and true transformation. More HERE

Grassroot Ohio With Carolyn Harding:
Save Kossuth Street Garden w/ Michael Doody& Emily Frechette
Get the latest on this important campaign! More here.
Michael Doody, founder of the award winning Kossuth Street community garden now threatened by developers. More here

Hope is not a feeling. It’s a virtue. We have good reason to practice it right now – And no alternative but to embrace it.” ~ E.J.Dionne

Seed-Starting for Home Gardeners (Feb 20 2 – 3:30 pm) Columbus Garden School
Details and Registration here.
The Nature of the Future: Elizabeth Kolbert and Kate Aronoff in conversation
Tuesday, February 23 8 – 9 PM
Details and Registration here.

join Green Energy Ohio and our co-host Citizens Climate Lobby Cleveland for a discussion of our Book Club selection, Rising: Dispatches from the New American Shoreby Elizabeth Rush.
Details (including cocktail recipe) and registration here.

An Ecological Civilization: The Path We’re On
Thursday, Feb. 25, at 4 p.m More here.

The path toward an ecological civilization moves us from an uncivilized society based on selfish wealth accumulation to one that is community-oriented and life-affirming. 
You’re invited to a virtual conversation on the ways communities are already working toward that goal—
and how you can be part of it.

Gotta love our Simply Living Calendar of Community Events
Search by keyword, scroll and browse, or display by month.


New blog on Columbus Coffee Roasters by Kyle Garvey. Check it out here!
Check the Market Blog for delicious healthy recipes here. One of many samples below.
WE are excited to announce
the SPRING Community Supported Herbalism (CHS) Box
which will be sent out in March and is
available for PRE-ORDER NOW!

Here’s a sampling of what happened at the February Free Press Second Saturday CyberSalon. In MARCH Simply Living will be offering presentations on public banking, Columbus Climate Plan, and more! Stay tuned for details coming soon!

Next, Dr. Marilyn Howard and Bob Fitrakis discussed their new book, co-written with Dr. Michael Brooks of Bowling Green: “A History of Hate in Ohio: Then and Now” Dr. Howard is a professor at Columbus State Community College who wrote her dissertation on the lynchings of black men in Ohio. She wrote the introduction to the book, now on pre-order from Ohio State University PressMichael Brooks wrote the history of hate in Ohio from the 1800s through the 1970s, and Dr. Fitrakis wrote the more recent historical developments of white supremacy and neo-Nazis in our state from the 70s to the present day. The photo in the lower half of the book is one of Bob’s from a neo-Nazi rally in Newark, Ohio. Several guests relayed personal stories about experiences with white supremacists in their past.

Dusty Estepp, an enthusiastic campaign volunteer, announced an upcoming Zoom fundraiser for Nina Turner’s campaign for Congress in the 11th district of Ohio, a Cleveland-area district formerly held by Marcia Fudge, who recently accepted the position of Secretary of Housing and Urban Development in the Biden administration. Turner was very active in the Bernie Sanders campaign and a very progressive candidate. Dusty will be hosting the Zoom fundraiser and some confirmed speakers will be celebrity guest Ben Hauck (actor and stand-in for John Oliver on “Last Week Tonight”), Adrienne Hood, Bob Fitrakis, and of course, Nina Turner. The fundraiser is on March 31 at 9pm and has a Facebook event page.

We learned Comfest will be virtual again this year – and even better than ever! Marty Stutz, from Comfest committee, told us they are putting together an event that will have live and recorded music, a street fair with vendors and community organization workshops. He noted the deadline for grants this year is extended to April 1st and that the annual Logo Contest is now open, also with an April 1st deadline.

Stu Nicholson gave us great news from All Aboard Ohio – that we can expect Amtrak to expand their passenger rail service in Ohio, including a station in Columbus! This was great news for people who have been harboring rage against the Kasich machine from when he gave back federal funding for a rail system when he became governor in 2010. There is a lot of news about the potential rail system on the All Aboard Ohio website: five new routes linking Cleveland-Columbus-Cincinnati with Dayton, Indianapolis, Detroit-Pontiac in Michigan, Buffalo-Albany-New York, and Pittsburgh. But, they need us to contact our congressional representatives to encourage them to give the funding.  
Contact Gov. Mike DeWine HERE
Contact your Senator HERE
Contact your Representative HERE
There is also the possibility of a Chicago-Ft. Wayne-Columbus-Pittsburgh train through MORPC.

Rachel Coyle of How Things Work at the Ohio Statehouse presented on some current bills in the state legislature: Ohio House Bill 55 would allow the public to give virtual testimony. Please join the demand for virtual testimony here.
Ohio Senate Bill 17 (the budget bill) will make it very difficult for people to receive food assistance. Also, we discussed House Bill 60 which would allow Autism Spectrum Disorder to be a qualifying condition to receive medial marijuana.
Pat Marida pointed out that we still need to repeal the repulsive HB 6 that gives bailouts to the nuclear industry.
Bill Lyons mentioned the anti-protest bill we should be keeping an eye on – SB 16, making it a felony for protests that block roads and sidewalks.
Rachel told us that her group gives virtual one-hour trainings on how to keep understand state legislation, how to best contact legislators, how to testify, and keep track of of the progress. The group is very closely watching redistricting efforts in Ohio – which we need badly – but the process is slowed down because of census delays. Stay tuned.

Sandy Bolzenius let us know about this event: Move to Amend, Central Ohio — “Reversing Gerrymandering in Ohio” (Thursday, February 25, 7-8PM). Register here.
You can also sign up here and get email invites for all Move to Amend, Central Ohio events. She also announced this: Are you in Joyce Beatty’s district? If so and are willing to be part of a group meeting with her, contact me. TOPIC: an amendment declaring that corporations are not people and money is not speech.

Victoria Kahn told us about the educational gardening events at Beat the Blues with Something Green CFAES.

Producer Feature: New Albany Organics
New Albany Organics is a 329-acre certified organic, diversified crop farm located in New Albany growing a variety of crops including vegetables, corn, soybeans, small grains, and hay. Read the latest news from the Clintonville Farmers Market here.

Reversing global warming will take a World War II level of mobilization. It is the work of tens of millions,
not hundreds of thousands. ~ Van Jones

Earth911 Quiz: The Carbon Footprint of Everyday Shopping Choices
Do you know how much your shopping decisions contribute to global warming? Try the quiz and test your knowledge! more…
6 Foods to DIY Instead of Buy
Save money and reduce packaging waste by making your own food.

Try these simple recipes you can DIY easily. more…

The Columbus Free Press Network includes two awesome community radio stations! 94.1 and 92.7 / 98.3
Listen on your radio or online anytime!


Columbus on the Cheap Good, Cheap, Fun

In This Issue…

GET ACTIVE!  Items below are selected from the Columbus Peace Newsletter 
edited by Connie Hammond (pictured above).
Email to subscribe to her Community Calendar or share meeting info. 

Friday, February 19, 2021 06:30 PM. OHPPC Beloved Community Care Launch! This team was created to build capacity for a culture of inclusivity that welcomes all to belong, connect, and be healthy in our efforts to achieve a moral revival. We will gather to connect with each other, learn about community healing, de-stress for the holidays, and receive the launch of the Beloved Community Care Team. All are welcome, you do NOT need to live in Ohio. For more information please contact  Register here

Friday, February 19, 2021, 4:00 – 5:00 PM.  Honk and Wave Every Friday for Our Revolution.  We’ll hang banners and wave to the folks as they head home for the weekend. while they last, each person will receive a Medicare for all placard and an organize to win placard. Enter 4261 Olentangy River Road into your GPS and then walk to the bridge. this is how we win.  Register here.

Saturday, February 20, 2020, 12:00 – 1:00 PM.  Occupy for Our Revolution.  Join us at the intersection of North Broadway and high as we demonstrate weekly for peace and justice. bring a mask and a sign or two.  Facebook.

February 20 – June 27, 2021.  2021 Anne Braden Anti-Racist Organizer Training.  Catalyst Project will be holding the Anne Braden Anti-Racist Organizer Training Program for white social justice organizers and activists starting on February 20, 2021. This program will be held online. The Braden Program develops white anti-racist leaders as part of an overall multiracial movement-building strategy. Applications are now open for this 4-month program, which includes weekly workshops, small group meetings, one-on-one mentorship, readings, homework, and grassroots fundraising. The applications are due DECEMBER 31 and space is limited. More info about the program here:  Register here

Sunday, February 21, 2021, 3:00 PM.  “There Is A Field” screening and panel.   This documentary is a powerful testimony to the relevance and importance of intersectionality regarding police violence, particularly in Palestine and here in the US. The screening will immediately be followed by a panel discussion including Jen Marlowe, the screenwriter and director of the film, and several important activists involved in the struggle against systemic racism in policing in both countries.   The discussion will focus on the parallels between policing in the US and in Palestine.  Jewish Voice For Peace – Westchester invites you to join us for this exciting event.  Register here

Sunday, February 21, 2021, 4:00 -6:00 PM.  Join us as we host a virtual forum on topics related to the Black community in the past, present, and future. This February join us as we honor our past, present, and future. During this virtual forum, black radical scholars has partnered with community leaders to discuss topics related Black community. Community leaders will facilitate topics in Zoom breakout rooms for 45 minutes. There will be two sessions during the forum. Session one will have three breakout room topics and session two will have three breakout room topics. Participants will be able to select their breakout room of interest during the event.  More information and registration here

Monday, February 22, 2021, 12:00 PM.  Facebook, we need to talk about Christian Zionism.  Facebook is finally taking strong steps to ensure its platforms aren’t used to target or dehumanize someone based on their religion, race, or nationality. The Israeli government is taking this opportunity to demand that Facebook’s artificial intelligence systems monitor and ban critical usages of the word “Zionist” based on the false equation of Jews with supporters of Israel. This policy has nothing to do with protecting Jews from antisemitism but instead is aimed at silence Palestinians and those who support them. The truth is that there are more self-defined Zionists in America today who are Christian than ones who are Jewish. If Facebook adopts this policy, it would do nothing to curb the anti-Jewish and anti-Arab postings of Christian Zionists and could detract from the work of countering Christian Zionism. Join us live to talk to those who will be most affected by this policy and learn how you can challenge it!  Facebook

Tuesday, February 23, 2021, 6:00 – 7:30 PM.  Teach in: Feminist Economy for People and the Planet.  In a feminist economy we recognize, value, and center reproductive labor as low carbon, community generating, life affirming, and skilled work that is necessary for the well being of everyone and to sustain human society and nature itself.  Please save the date for our first teach-in on a Feminist Economy for People and the Planet, hosted by the United Frontline Table, the Feminist Green New Deal and the people behind the Feminist COVID recovery proposal in Hawaii to explore the principles of a feminist economy, the transformative implications for the care economy and how to apply feminist economic principles to our collective work.  Register here

Tuesday, February 23, 2021, 3:00 – 4:00 PM.  Restorative Justice Book Club.  Join us for a book club that explores the power & promise of restorative justice, led by Ohio RCRC Faith Organizer Kelley Fox! Regardless of whether you’ve read these books or not, Kelley will be available to answer questions and talk about each book from a restorative justice perspective. “Emergent Strategy” and “We Will Not Cancel Us,” by adrienne maree brown.  MARCH 30th: “Beyond Survival: Strategies and Stories from the Transformative Justice Movement,” by Ejeris Dixon & Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha. APRIL 27th: “Conflict Is Not Abuse: Overstating Harm, Community Responsibility, and the Duty of Repair,” by Sarah Schulman. MAY 25th: “The Revolution Starts at Home: Confronting Intimate Violence Within Activist Communities,” by Ching-In Chen, Jai Dulani & Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha.  Facebook

Tuesday, February 23, 2021, 7:00 PM.  Worthington Interfaith Neighbors.  Sharing Our Stories – Joseph Mas.  Joseph L. Mas (José Luis Mas) was born in Havana, Cuba, and arrived in the United States as a political refugee at the age of 12 in 1961. Mr. Mas is the first foreign-born Hispanic to run for county-wide office in Franklin County, having run for Common Pleas Judge in 2002, and for Judge of the Municipal Court in 2007.  He was graduated from Capital University Law School in 1979 after receiving his B.S. degree with honors from Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida.  Mr. Mas is a trial attorney and has been active in Central Ohio community activities for many years.  He is a tireless advocate for the humane treatment of immigrants and refugees and has been a board member of various community and state agencies.  Mr. Mas will talk about the history of Cuba and that of his family.  He will also discuss the Cuban Revolution of 1953-59 and its aftermath for Cuba, his family and Cuban people in exile.   His experiences as an attorney representing immigrant and refugee clients will be explored. Send an email to for the zoom link. 

Wednesday, February 24, 2021, 7:00 PM. Your Protest Rights and Risks with OHIO SB 33.  Find out how the new Critical Infrastructure bill will change the way we engage in public witness in Ohio. Register in advance here.  Facebook

Wednesday, February 24, 2021, 12:00 – 1:00 PM> The Color of Health.  Examining Racism as a Public Health Crisis.  In recent months, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine, the Cuyahoga and Franklin County boards of health and numerous others have recognized racism as a public health crisis. Join OSU Center for Ethics and Human Values and the Jack, Joseph, and Morton Mandel Humanities Center at Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C) for a panel discussion about public policy, health care access, race and racism in Ohio. This panel is part of an ongoing collaboration between Ohio State and Tri-C to host thoughtful conversations on issues facing our state.  More information and registration here

Thursday, February 25, 2021, 7:00 – 8:00 PM.  Speaking of Democracy: Replacing Gerrymandering in OhioTen years ago, a small group of Ohioans created district maps to ensure that representatives could choose their constituents rather than the people choosing their representatives. That is about to change! On February 25, Common Cause’s Catherine Turcer will discuss the recent history of gerrymandering in Ohio, its consequences, the subsequent citizen uproar, and the current reform plan that Ohioans’ overwhelmingly passed in 2018. This session will also detail the new rules to create fair districts, relevant dates that Ohioans need to know, and how individuals may take a direct role in designing Ohio’s new district map.  Register in advance at  or call 929-205-6099.//Meeting ID: 896 3219 1580. Sponsor: Move to Amend, Central Ohio. Contact: Sandy Bolzenius,  

Thursday, February 25, 2021, 8:00 PM. Powell’s Books Presents Naomi Klein in Conversation With Miko Vergun & Isaac Vergun.  From Naomi Klein — award-winning journalist, one of the foremost voices for climate justice, and author of This Changes Everything and On Fire — comes How to Change Everything (Atheneum Books for Young Readers), an empowering, engaging young readers guide to understanding and battling climate change. Warmer temperatures. Fires in the Amazon. Superstorms. These are just some of the effects of climate change that we are already experiencing. The good news is that we can all do something about it. A movement is already underway to combat not only the environmental effects of climate change but also to fight for climate justice and make a fair and livable future possible for everyone. And young people are not just part of that movement, they are leading the way. They are showing us that this moment of danger is also a moment of great opportunity — an opportunity to change everything. Full of empowering stories of young leaders all over the world, How to Change Everything offers young readers a comprehensive look at the state of the climate today and how we got here, while also providing the tools they need to join this fight to protect and reshape the planet they will inherit. Klein will be joined in conversation by Miko Vergun and Isaac Vergun, federal plaintiffs in Juliana v. U.S. and cofounders and youth climate leaders with Youth Acting for our Earth.  Register here

Mega Weekend
Beer Collabs, PBJ & Jazz, Aminah Robinson Day, and More

Have a cozy weekend everyone!

Cozy up, ya’ll! With the weather, it is probably fun to just stream events this weekend. Don’t forget to get your dog license. Sunday is your last chance to get that CAPA merch.


Sydney McSweeney
PBJ & Jazz is virtual with Sydney McSweeney. Natalie’s Grandview is streaming and has live shows all weekend. Stuart’s Opera House welcomes Spoken and Heard to the virtual stage on Thursday.

Food Things to Try

Open Always. A beer collab with Land Grant and Buckeye Donuts.

Explore North Market Bridge Park during their Happy Hour tonight.
What do you know about The Evolution of American Cuisine?
Land Grant releases a fun beer collab: Open Always.
Columbus Brewing Company has a cool limited beer release too.

Enjoy Exploring Art

Jermaine Smith
Tonight, tune into a Discussion with Editorial Cartoonist Jeff Stahler.
Go Backstage at the Lincoln with Jermaine Smith. Tune in or attend #Charlottsville. Check out Our Right to Gaze: Black Film Identities. King Arts Complex has A Celebration Of Aminah Robinson: Virtual All Arts Day.

What else can you do
this weekend?

Learn how to make a popup card with OSU Urban Arts Space.
Go shopping at Bliss Home Market’s monthly event.
Orchids continue at Franklin Park Conservatory. Learn how to grow seeds with Ohio Herb Center. Tune in to a silly Online Roast of Willy Wonka.

Thanks for reading and enjoy your weekend!

Columbus Free Press Activists Calendar Editor Bob Roehm
WCBE Arts & Life Calendar 


“The time has come to move beyond eco-elitism to eco- populism – To change our laws and culture , the green movement justice , political solutions and social change.”
~ Van Jones

Be the Change: Join Simply Living Individual membership rates have been reduced to $25 annually. Seniors, $20. Students only $10. Business memberships starting at $100 now include membership in the Ohio Sustainable Business Council.

Sign up online here or email

Love what we’re doing? Share our passion for nature and sustainable community living? How about volunteering? Love to research, write, communicate? Email or call Chuck Lynd @ 614- 354-6172.

One Comment

  1. Thank you for compiling all of these events into one resource. I shared it on our social.