Guest Post: spare parts at National Night Out 2012

What were you up to this Tuesday, October 2? Were you at your neighborhood’s National Night Out (NNO)? We were! Starting at about 6:00pm, members of the Dellview community gathered in the Granados Senior Center to share their knowledge, memories, and homemade desserts. Entertainment took the form of information booths, slide shows, and a silent auction. And, of course, a crafts table. That is, a crafts table done spare parts-style.

Using our trademark materials (paper rolls–see July 2012, paint chips, string, egg cartons and old magazines), denizens of Dellview were encouraged to make something new from something old. Binoculars, flowers, and a flag pole were some of our favorite creations made from paper rolls.

View from the craft table

For those brave enough to try it, origami books from one of our favorite reuse centers–the public library–were provided along with large sheets of Japanese newspaper and bright magazine pages. After creating a small paper crane, our new friend Jaime moved on to build a massive version of the bird out of newspaper. After struggling to fold a piece of paper “hotdog- style” for the better part of an hour, I was impressed.

Jaime and the paper crane to beat all paper cranes.

Inspired by all of the rain we’ve been having, Mary whipped together this ship in no time using newspaper and gold labels. Once again, I was totally amazed at the paper folding skills of those around me. Little by little, people began adding to it, and before long, a seascape emerged.

Egg cartons make the best oceans. Who knew?

(I forgot the names of these awesome people!) created whales out of paper rolls, and a cabin for the ship out of paint chips. Now if that’s not innovative, I don’t know what is.

If the model boat and ocean is any indication, you’re looking at a few future artists/marine biologists.
Our National Night Out ship in all its creative reuse glory.

This was my first NNO, and I have to say I was impressed. A special shout out to Joan Fabian, a spare parts friend and donor, for playing such a large role in organizing the event, and for inviting us to take part in it. If you missed your community’s Night Out, no sweat! Recreate the experience by grabbing a few friends, some materials you’ve got laying around the house, and make something new! A word of advice: leave the origami to the professionals.

Artist and Dellview Area Neighborhood Association Board Member Joan Fabian.