Type: Community Grant (formerly Mini Grant)
MWMO Funding: $3,000
Through partnerships linking academia, art and water stewardship, Bluestem Communications and the Works Progress art studio brought a Water Bar exhibit to the Northern Sparks Arts Festival. Local water experts and volunteers served as “water bartenders” and served visitors flights of local tap waters from three different drinking water sources. Visitors were also invited to read educational materials and share their thoughts on water as they tasted, compared, and discussed the different water samples. This experience sparked deeper conversations about water quality, the personal meaning of water and how individuals and communities can partner to protect it.
More than 2,000 people attended the event and more than 60 signed up to become “River Citizens” with the 1 Mississippi campaign. The success of this event helped the River Life program start a 1 Mississippi advocacy group at the University of Minnesota. It also contributed to the Water Bar project finding a permanent home on Central Avenue in Northeast Minneapolis. Water Bar has spurred partnerships and collaborations as its community of advocates push to improve water quality issues locally, regionally and nationally.