Katerina Gaita and a few pals set the ball rolling to attempt saving the Dancing Dog building as a community space/asset little more than a week before the mid-week meeting I attend but the campaign is already gaining momentum.
I filled in the contact form – “How can I help?” – form on the new group’s website and have been duly contacted.
I proffer my services, suggesting that maybe – just maybe – I can offer some help by way of media savvy.
The truth is, though, I feel a bit redundant …
… because the sale of the property at 42 Albert Street and the campaign to keep it “in the community” has already scored the front page splashes of BOTH local newspapers.
Katerina assures me, however, that this is because the story has captured the community’s imagination and not necessarily because of any top-rate media hustle by herself or anyone else.
As well, The Age has also been busy in the form of story in its Domain section, which you can read here.
But time is short as the auction is scheduled for 1pm on Saturday, April 18.
I am one of 13 people who attend the meeting in Seddon and one of only three blokes on hand.
I feel even more out of my depth when the complexities and work involved in setting up such a project – administrative, legal, financial, crowdfunding and more – are grappled with.
Luckily, we have among us a number of what I suspect are very capable community activists and it is all addressed, and roles and aims allocated and decided, within a couple of hours with a minimum of fuss.
There is wine and Easter eggs on hand to grease the wheels.
Everyone is on board but all those present, without exception, have busy lives and a gazillion other things to deal with.
My offer of putting Consider The Sauce at the campaign’s disposal is readily accepted.
So while #letsbuythedog has a Facebook group (see here) and a website (see here), CTS will work as a sort of clearing house – on a needs basis – for news, links to media coverage, stories, comments, conversations and notification of events, happenings and meetings.
Hopefully, we can all have some fun while we’re at it!
So why have I chosen to become in this when so many other similar campaigns have passed me by?
I’m not really sure, to tell you the truth.
I’ve certainly never been a regular habitue of the Dancing Dog.
I think it comes down to a comment left by regular CTS comment-leaver Jane on the Footscray eats goss post I put up a week or so ago:
“It’s going to kinda suck when Footscray is just another Yarraville…”
The group as whole, however, is determined that the campaign be promoted as community-positive rather than anti-development.
Check out the real estate listing for the property here.