Message from Ann: May/June 2017

Dear Friends,

Happy May! It is now the time of year to ask, “How does your garden grow?” Everything is blooming and growing around here … both literally and metaphorically. At The Scrap Exchange, we’ve been investing in our gardens for the past couple of years.

In 2015 we received a grant from Duke Doing Good in the Neighborhood to create community gardens and hire a part-time gardener. Fast forward to 2017 and we have our second year of community gardens, and Hendall Loeffler continues as our awesome gardener. A gardening committee was started before the grant, thanks to Rachel Preston, and we’ve had many of the same members since the beginning. Big shout out to Travis, Diego, Elyse, Richard and everyone else who has been a part of it. THANK YOU for bringing food, community, fun and sustainability to our campus!

All of these campus and facility efforts take a village — from community gardens to the gardening committee and the facility/campus committee and volunteers and staff. We can’t thank enough everyone who participates.

We have a facility/campus committee that has undertaken the design for our “front yard” – the courtyard where the basketball hoops are. We’re working to de-pave another 8,000 square feet — we’ve already de-paved 6,000 square feet, thanks to funding from Durham Soil and Water District and work coordinated by Hendall and Travis Cohn. We received additional support from Triangle Community Foundation to continue with the project. Our plans are to take out the pavement, amend the soil, plant, landscape, create shade structures, relocate the basketball court, create an event space with pallet bleachers that move, and work to create a magical space for our neighbors and community. The transition should be moving forward in the next few months — BOLO- be on the lookout to see it happen right before your eyes.

The Cameron Gallery will also be changing out its show this week and moving to an exhibit of artistic royalty — Chapel Hill artist Charron Andrews. If you haven’t seen her work, it is transformative. Charron has a knack for turning everyday objects into vessels of spiritual energy, guidance, and majesty through her shrine-making process and techniques. Come on out and meet the artist on Friday 5/19 from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Third Friday gallery opening at The Scrap Exchange.

Also be sure to check out our ongoing series of classes and community meetups and programs for kids and adults, and come in to the retail store, especially if you haven’t been in a while. We take in (literally) tons of materials every week and we put NEW materials out in the store every day. Doing some spring cleaning or moving to a new home? The Scrap Exchange is the place to bring your awesome donations, a one-stop drop for all of the things you need to get rid of. Your donations make possible our mission of promoting creativity, environmental awareness and community through reuse. Keep them coming! And thank you!!

And we would be remiss if we failed to mention the upcoming BEAVER QUEEN PAGEANT, in which our very own Madeline James is competing as Gleanda the Good Beaver. Vote early, vote often! Come on out to the Pageant on June 3 or vote online at All funds raised support the Ellerbe Creek Watershed Association. Go Beavers! Go Madeline!

On a sad note, longtime friend and supporter of The Scrap Exchange, world renowned dancer Chuck Davis passed away this week. If you only knew him from seeing him around Durham, check out the New York Times obituary to learn about out all of the other spectacular things he’d done. He was a national treasure and he will truly be missed.

In honor of Baba Chuck Davis, we sign off this month with…

Peace, love, and respect for everybody.

Ann May Woodward
Executive Director
The Scrap Exchange

P.S. ~ For those of you involved in the creative reuse industry, or those who would like to become involved, mark your calendars for October 19 – 21 when we’ll host our first Creative Reuse Con, an event designed to give folks working in creative reuse a chance to learn from each other. We’ll bring together people from around the country to talk about what works, what doesn’t, and what should we try next. Check out our website for complete details, and please help spread the word!

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