Several hundred people attended Open City’s first benefit held February 28 at Alvin’s Delicatessen.
The three hundred dollars collected at the door was used to purchase the community switchboard now in operation at the Open City office.
For the last few weeks Open City members have met in committees, rapped on telephones and have generally been putting their projects together. The most obvious result of all this has been the opening of the Open City office now located at 4726 Third, near Forest, 2nd Floor, office number 5.
In that same building is the Community Switchboard, used for disseminating all information relative to existing in this city. Whether it’s a suicide threat or Grande information, the Switchboard will know what to do with the calls. The number is 831-2770. The line is never busy.
The Housing Committee has moved into the office on Third. They have begun looking for vacant apartments and have already placed some people.
The Job Committee is right next to Housing and they are waiting for people to call about jobs. John Detz, WABX Station Manager, is spearheading that project.
The Legal Aid department of Open City headed by Jeff Forest has prepared a leaflet on your legal rights and what to do when you’re busted. Portions of that leaflet will be made into an article that will appear in the Fifth Estate.
There will be a public meeting of people concerned with this aspect of Open City at the Unitarian Church, 4605 Cass at Forest at 7 pm on Sunday, March 16. If you get busted or need legal aid call or write the Open City office.
The Communications Company of Open City has purchased a large mimeograph machine, and that plus their presses and photography equipment are available to the public at minimal cost.
Joel Landy is in charge of the presses and Alan Gotkin of this newspaper is working with the Communications projects as photography consultant.
A daily newspaper for the Warren-Forest area will be executed by White Panther David Gaynes.
Frank Lucatelli from the Free University of Detroit is more or less directing the Education Committee. Classes at U of D have already begun and Wayne will be hosting Free U seminars in about two weeks.
Jane Forest is coordinating the new nursery school that may open some time in April. That committee has already looked into regulations and laws regarding setting up day care institutions. Call Open City for additional information.
The Food Committee is headed by Sandy Feldheim and they have already cased the neighborhood for cooperative stores. Fruit and vegetable co-ops are being organized to pick up food every Saturday at the Eastern Market. Cars and customers are needed. If you want to get involved with all this, call the switchboard.
The Street Theatre troupe has met and is still debating their direction. Last week they wanted to see how well they work together so the troupe dressed up in costume and whiteface to shop at downtown Hudson’s. Interested people should call 831-2770.
The Entertainment Committee is busy negotiating with Russ Gibb for a gala Open City benefit in March. More about this is in the next Fifth Estate.
The people managing the switchboard are still looking for desks, chairs, typewriters and any other office equipment available as a donation.
The last few weeks have been exhausting ones for Open City people. The office is set up, the Jobs and Housing committees have already started placing people and the central switchboard has five lines already open.
The next step is up to the community. It’s one thing to call a switchboard or buy cheap vegetables, it’s another thing to come up with some money to support all this. Open City needs money to survive and expand.
The office alone runs on a $400 a month budget and that doesn’t include the Switchboard. If you can dig what Open City is doing, then check out the ad in this Fifth Estate, send us what you can afford and know that your contribution is appreciated.
Open City is open for business.