SAVE THE DATES: Join us at our University Avenue site for creative, family-friendly fun in the neighborhood! Each pair of Saturdays will be led by an Artistic Director and feature interactive art and opportunities for creation outdoors on Springboard's green space. Each event runs 1-5pm and is free of charge, all ages welcome.
September 18 & September 25 – How We Imagine
Save the dates for a closing set of Saturdays at Springboard, with TruArtSpeaks! (Makeup rain date on October 9 if needed)
Body & Breath: Kinshasha Kambui will lead two all ages, all abilities, movement & breath based that center healing, expansion, and mindfulness—all core components of creative expression.
Hip Hop Dance: Master Hip Hop Dance Artist & Instructor, Herbert Johnson III will lead one youth based Hip Hop Dance lesson and one Adult based Hip Hop Dance session inviting folx to imagine the ways in which creative expression exudes from the body and challenging participants to consider the expressive nature of Hip Hop based movement.
DJ HUH What?!: Will be holding down the 1’s & 2’s creating an atmosphere rooted in Hip Hop exploration of creative expression and artistic freedom. A family friendly set, this will be a mix of movement music and creative genius selected to inspire every listener to think deep and move.
Mainstage: The TruArtSpeaks mainstage will feature poetry and rap performances by ShaVunda Brown, Malik “Juice Lord” Curtis Khary Jackson, Sagirah Shahid, and more. Inviting you to witness cultural practitioners exercising their creativity in real time.
Visual Arts Station: A visual art station for anyone who wants to practice their hand styles, tags, etc. There will also be chalk spray, Hip Hop stencils, canvas and more, all to allow you another entry point into how you imagine creative expression.
Food & Drink: Creativity feeds the spirit; the body must be fed as well. At TruArtSpeaks, we try to ensure that we nourish the whole person as a part of creative and cultural practice when in community with others.
GIF corner: What does creative expression look like to you? Is it a silly face, a series of photos, sharing the art you created with the world, your posse or crew? Create a GIF, tag @TruArtSpeaks and use the hashtag “#TruArtSpeaks” when responding to the prompt: “I imagine creative expression by...” to be featured in our IG, Twitter and social media stories as the day goes on.
WE-WIN INSTITUTE: Through a partnership with WE-WIN Institute, we are continuing a core component of our literacy advocacy by holding space for people to read and engage with books as an access point to creative expression. WE-WIN will be giving away books, making buttons and creating other memorable pieces of art as a part of this exploration of imagination.
Join us at 262 University Avenue West, St. Paul, MN 55103, for these events!
Your safety is important to us! As we continue to practice care and safety in our communities, these events will be mainly outdoors. Masks and hand sanitizer will be available, and any entrance indoors will require masking. If you are unvaccinated, please wear a mask, and if you are feeling unwell, please take care of yourself and others and come to a different date.
Saturdays at Springboard are supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
Cover image: Creative People Power mural by Discover Dope at Springboard's office and community hall on University Avenue in St. Paul. Photo: Carl Atiya Swanson
RSVP for Saturdays at Springboard
Help us plan for attendance and safety by letting us know you're coming – we'll send you an invitation reminder!
August 28 & September 4 – How We Build
ARTS-Us youth engage and lead activities in how we shape and influence the built environment around us with Artistic Director Anthony Galloway. (Makeup rain date on September 11 if needed)
Affirmation Jenga – Participants paint affirmations on large Jenga pieces and do variations of games that center around how we affirm each other and community
Face painting – Fun station for kiddos and young artists
Jewelry stations – Literally building together with several jewelry styles and beading including bead painting
Community mural station – ARTS-Us youth tell the story of community through painting murals to live in community
Imagine: community vision boards – Youth lead creation of building community vision board for how participants envision community on many levels
Live Performance/body movement area – Building alongside one another through body movement, & poetry.
August 7 & 14 – How We Steward
August 7 & 14 – How We Steward
Artistic Director Aki Shibata and a group of emerging artists lead you in workshops, community painting and performance surrounding environmental justice. (Makeup rain date on August 21 if needed)
The International Indigenous Youth Council
IIYC TC will be leading interactive activities based on the four elements (water, earth, wind, fire). Join us in writing letters to Mother Earth, contributing to a collaborative mural, creating paper windmills/ kites, and making yummy teas! The International Indigenous Youth Council seeks to organize youth through education, spiritual practices and civic engagement to create positive change in our communities. Through action and ceremony, the IIYC commits to building a sustainable future for the next seven generations.
The Ikidowin Acting Ensemble
The Ikidowin Acting Ensemble presents We Do It for the Water. This play weaves stories of Indigenous struggles to protect our water, beginning with saving Camp Cold Water Spring, the Mother Earth Water Walks, the Nibi Walks and The North Dakota Access Pipeline. The water walkers and water-protectors presented a non-violent message that united Native people and non-Native environmentalists.
Winfrey Oenga, collaborating with Frogtown Green
Winfrey Oenga has been gardening with Frogtown Green this summer to get the inspiration to the climate justice banner that will be displayed at the heart of Frogtown, the Lily pad garden. The Frogtown Green is working to make the Frogtown the greenest and most sustainable neighborhood in St Paul. She loved working with the people in the Frogtown community and learning all about protecting and helping the earth through gardening. The banner is designed with her love and appreciation for this community, and now community is invited to put the final touch!
Melvin and Metric Giles host conversation circle of Land Connector
Metric and Melvin Giles are experienced urban gardeners and land connectors who are committed to creating community gardening spaces throughout the Frogtown and Rondo neighborhoods. They will host open conversation circles to discuss what it means to be land connectors.
Kalpulli Yaocenoxtli will perform in the parking lot 2:30-3pm! Kalpulli Yaocenoxtli is a traditional Mexica-Nahua (Aztec) cultural group dedicated to preserving and sharing the dances, songs and philosophy of Nahua traditions and culture.
Artistic Director Aki Shibata
Aki Shibata is a behavioral artist, educator, facilitator, and community organizer from Tokyo, Japan, now based in Minnesota. In Shibata's artistic work they develops intersections for people in public spaces to discover their authentic selves and to nurture compassion for all. Their work is about finding a sense of belonging and finding ways to let people meet their inner peace. Their artistic practice involves the examination of body and mind in public and gallery spaces through exploring the behavior of human interaction and notions of performance. They currently teaches visual art and participatory art in schools throughout the Twin Cities. In 2017 they founded the Primary School of Behavioral Art (ps-ba.com), where people come together to learn from each other and to work together to bring liberation for all through art.
July 17 & 24 – How We Heal
Join Culture Healing Curator and Healing Artist DejaJoelle as she offers opportunities to heal, expand, write, and be with community at Springboard’s green space. (Makeup rain date on July 31 if needed)
DejaJoelle, Artistic Director
DejaJoelle is an African Centered - Healing Artist, Choreographer, Director, and Cultural Healing Curator. She believes Dance serves as our connection to ourselves, our communities, and our overall Divinity. DejaJoelle creates intentional spaces for Black, LGBTQ2, and Deaf community to discover their own practices toward Healing using Dance, Body Reclamation, and other Healing practices. As the world experiences collective hurt and grief, DejaJoelle trusts that our greatest act of REVOLUTION and REBELLION against hatred and corruption is Self-Love and Healing. As she refuses to fuel the fire of destruction and heinousness, she instead focuses her Art and energy on properly handling Black people who continue to be mishandled. https://www.instagram.com/dejajoelle/
Kenna Cottman, Afro/Yoga – 1:15pm - 2:00pm
Afro/Yoga is an embodied practice that combines the flow and intentional postures and body positions and structured breathing of yoga with some of the basic ideas in African Diasporic Movement and Dance. We explore questions of self study and cultivate feelings of joy, release, gratitude and connection by practicing moving and breathing together. I'm intentional about holding space for the participants and putting y'all first when it comes to the experience #consent.
Mychal Fisher, The Turndown: Sound Bathing for us by us – 2:15 - 3:00pm
This will be a safe space to chill, rest, and recover all while soaking up sonic vibrations tuned specifically to heal and uplift your mind, body and spirit. Just breathe and be present.
Iman (Umi IMAN) Siferllah-Griffin, Yemaya Flow – 3:15pm - 4:00pm
Yemaya Flow is a guided experience inviting us to give gratitude to the waters within us and the qualities & entities of water available to us. With the intention to nourish our minds, bodies, and Spirits, we will engage in consistent inhale and exhale, intensional stretch & postures, flowing motion of the body, and journaling. Please come prepared with plenty of drinking water, yoga mat, and a journal. AMA GVNIDA.
Khadijah Siferllah-Griffin, Footwork Challenge – 4:15pm - 5:00pm
“The Footwork Challenge” is a footwork based session intended to focus on groove and precision while getting fancy with your feet. The foot work incorporated will be a fusion of her individual movement and influences of various Afro/ Black styles. Come enjoy this fancy footwork work as Khadijah merges the sharing of fun and skill for her healing session, “The Footwork Challenge.”
Having family roots in Chicago, DJ Michel.Be comes from the power of jazz, 1960's and 1970's revolutionary funk, Hip Hop, House and altogether music of the African Diaspora. Michel.Be started DJing professionally at Twin Cities Pride in 2014 and 2015, as the feature DJ for "RARE Productions: Power To The People Stage". Since then, Michel.Be has DJ'ed all across the Twin Cities for community events, private parties, and political fundraisers. Michel. Be continues to evoke spiritual power through music, and create positive dance spaces for Trans, Gender Non-conforming, Queer People of Color.