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conNECKtedTOO to launch app in support of tiny business


conNECKtedTOO is launching the conNECKtedTOO/TINYisPOWERFUL mobile app and a revitalized website Sunday, Dec. 8 at the Cannon Street Arts Center in Charleston from 3-6 p.m. This event celebrates the rich and remarkable legacy of Charleston’s tiny "smaller than small" business community through an interactive performance celebrating the art of barbering, films, arts, and fellowship, and will serve as the official debut of a new online creative place for tiny businesses and you. In 2018 the Charleston Rhizome Collective received the only ArtPlace America award in South Carolina in support of a project of art in/with community for economic development. The event on Dec. 8 presents the development of a "participative" online platform seen as a community lab that encourages artists, activists, young people, and business owners to exchange stories and form supportive networks. The creation and ongoing development of the mobile app addresses the lack of support for family-owned tiny businesses who are frequently passed over by typical forums for economic and social support. At the moment, 28 local businesses will have their own profiles with a variety of content, ranging from personal narratives and links to each business’s social media. “The conNECKtedTOO/TINYisPOWERFUL mobile app honors the cultural relevance of tiny business now and throughout history. It encourages patronage and is a place to explore, share resources, learn, and grow community through collaboration between artists, cultural workers, youth, activists, and tiny businesses. User experiences will vary,” says Victoria Moore of conNECKtedTOO. Join conNECKtedTOO Sunday, Dec. 8 (doors open at 3 p.m. and an interactive performance starts at 4 p.m.) in celebrating neighborhood tiny businesses whose vitality makes Charleston rich. This event is free and open to the public. For more information please contact Victoria at 843.209.7902 or email conNECKtedTOO@gmail.com.
conNECKtedTOO by the Charleston Rhizome Collective is a project of art and culture in/with community for economic development supported in large part by an ArtPlace America Award with additional support from the Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, South Arts in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts, the South Carolina Arts Commission, the Lowcountry Quarterly Art Program and the Coastal Community Foundation. The City of Charleston Office of Cultural Affairs serves as a civic partner.

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conNECKtedTOO is on the move

Sculpture heads to North Charleston for the summer


“You Bet ‘N Me ‘N Me ‘N You,” a sculptural tiny business village of the future, has moved from the Cannon Street Arts Center in downtown Charleston to the lobby of North Charleston’s City Hall (2500 City Hall Lane) where it will remain installed through early August 2019. The sculpture was created by artists, apprentices and business owners working with conNECKtedTOO, a project of art and culture in/with community for economic development. The project supports and promotes tiny business in Charleston and beyond as a vital part of neighborhood and commerce by building a collaborative, sustainable network of business owners, artists and neighborhood youth. This network is inter-generational, interracial and grassroots by design; it reflects the importance of diversity in the building of equitable societies.

"Everybody's dream is not to become Bill Gates. Some folks want to support their families or live out something that's a passion of theirs. There's one guy that has always wanted to have a place to sell pizza. As simple as that. He doesn't want to be Pizza Hut," said conNECKtedTOO tiny business coordinator and Charleston native Theron Snype.

In addition to the tiny business village installation, conNECKtedTOO has developed an Active Memory Map as one way of seeking out local narratives that are often left out of economic conversations—the stories, voices and memories of generations of Charlestonians, especially those who represent marginalized populations like minorities, women, and immigrants. The participatory map will be at the Charleston County Library Main Branch (68 Calhoun St., Charleston) through July 31.
coNECKtedTOO, as a multi-faceted experiment, is being constantly imagined, forged and promoted. Our present plan, timeline and budget are supported in large part by an ArtPlace America award. Additional support is provided by Gaylord & Dorothy Donnelley Foundation and a grant from South Arts in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and the South Carolina Arts Commission. For more information please visit conNECKtedTOO.org or email conNECKtedTOO@gmail.com.

Greenville (S.C.) aims to be the next Portland (Ore.)

Thriving cultural scene rejuvenates Greenville

Everybody who's been there in the last 10 years knows that, but the rest of the U.S. is catching on. None other than the Wall Street Journal checked in last week with a glowing report on Greenville. The city that shares a name with so many others across the nation is aiming to become the East Coast's Portland ... a city that shares its name with so many others across the nation. The WSJ's conclusion is that artists, arts, and culture are the driving factors of the Greenville boom. (Again, you knew that.) From the story:

All of these artists—and hundreds of others—have chosen to live in Greenville, S.C., a Southern city of about 68,000 people that once called itself the Textile Capital of the World. Today, the vibrant arts scene is revitalizing the city itself, attracting other artists, young professionals and families wanting a fun, affordable place to live.

“We came looking for artists,” says Mr. Ambler, who is 47. He and his wife wanted to live somewhere warm, but California was too expensive and they didn’t think Florida was a good fit for his artwork. When a teaching job opened, they moved in 2000 to Seneca, S.C., about 30 miles west of Greenville, and bought a 1,800-square-foot studio for $88,000, selling it seven years later for $210,000.

Go here to read the full story. (Subscription not required.)

Fountain Inn seeks directors for Performing Arts Center and economic development

The city of Fountain Inn is looking for one or two new employees, depending upon candidates' skill sets. Van Broad, who currently manages both the economic development duties and the Performing Arts Center for Fountain Inn, is leaving to work for the city of Mauldin. Fountain Inn officials want to hear from candidates interested in either the combined position or just one position. Director of Economic Development The qualified candidate will manage the development and implementation of programs to enhance the quality of life for residents by encouraging high quality growth and development. The qualified candidate will work with individual property owners and developers to structure appropriate public/private partnerships, facilitate private development, oversee operation of the public market and the Performing Arts Center. Director of the Performing Arts Center Manages and implements the artistic vision of the Younts Center for Performing Arts and all of its arts and educational programming, ongoing development of the aesthetic values and activities, and the effectiveness, cost analysis, and organizational planning of all productions. Find out more and apply at www.FountainInn.org. Be sure to indicate whether you are applying for one or both positions.