The Year of Play
Location: Fergus Falls, Minnesota
Collaborators: Jake Krohn, Molly Johnston
Led by three multidisciplinary artist-organizers in collaboration with local citizens, The Year of Play was a creative initiative that uses art and culture to inspire play for all ages in Fergus Falls while celebrating and making visible community assets, promoting wellness through active living, facilitating community interaction, and infusing a sense of fun and wonder in town. Highlighted projects include rural Minnesota’s first openly queer drag show, citizen-led riverfront beautification projects, a subzero pop-up movie theater on a frozen lake, a public “people’s park” in a local lot, and the continued development of “possibility kits” to encourage and support cultural activations on a neighbor-to-neighbor level. Using tactical ruralism and under the guise of hi-visibility safety vests, the Dept of Public Perks continues proactive unsanctioned work in Fergus Falls.
The People’s Park
An all-ages all-folks summer venue in double parking spots of the Court Street parking lot overlooking the Ottertail River. By the people and for the people, this public park was used for lunch breaks, cribbage games, impromptu concerts, letter-writing campaigns, and who even knows what else. Amenities included solar lights, checkers, cribbage, playing cards, stump seating, a stump table feat. a beach umbrella, planters of strawberries and moss roses, and all the astro-turf that was available at the hardware store in Detroit Lakes.