Because the garden is privately owned, it walks a fine line of being a public space and a private gathering spot for a few neighbors. Although everyone has a “more the merrier” attitude, there’s some realities of how to manage certain liabilities such as children, pets, people outside of the neighborhood, and accidents. By now, you’ve probably been asked a few times by people in the neighborhood “what is the garden?” and “how can I get involved?”, and you may not know what to say, exactly. In a nutshell, here’s what you can say.
“The Art Garden is a privately owned, neighborhood gathering spot designed to build community. We can always use all the help we can get and if you’re a neighbor, go to www.VeniceArtGarden.com and enter your name, email, address, and phone number so we can keep you up to date on community events like movies, parties, classes, and gardening days.”
Obviously that’s a canned answer and you can say any version of that, but in a nutshell, we want people to feel welcome and a part of our community. So, however you’d like to convey that, go for it!
When someone enters their name, email, and phone number to the website, they’ll start receiving a weekly update newsletter of what’s happening in the garden. From the newsletter, they can choose to RSVP to events, email questions, or offer suggestions. They will also have the opportunity to sign up for specific levels of involvement for volunteering such as gardening maintenance, or handy work for the houses.
The Art Garden is a communal space and completely relies on neighbors working with each other.