#14: Volunteer to Support the Lincoln Square Community

My 30-Before-30 list is officially in full-swing! I crossed the 1st item off  last weekend and I can already tell this list is going to be life-changing. It’s forcing me to actually *do* all (or at least some of) the things I keep saying I want to do. I’ve also realized that this about so much more than a list. Each item is an adventure, but there are so many hidden goals, hopes, and wishes embedded within the list: getting active, being a better/healthier/happier version of myself, making new connections, building a better future for myself, sharing experiences with the people I love while we can, and making time & space to celebrate this crazy thing called life while I’m living it.

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#14 on my list was: Volunteer to support the Lincoln Square Community. I did that by pouring craft beer, at the Square Roots street fest, in the company of amazing volunteers, while chatting up some pretty awesome fest-goers. So…Best. Volunteer. Gig. Ever. I had a blast & time flew by. I got outside, soaked up some sunshine, shared laughs with my fellow volunteers, connected with some seriously good people in the Chicago craft beer scene, and freely sampled many a high-quality brew. I’d do it again in a heartbeat, and actually already signed up to pour at another craft beer charity event in my ‘hood later this summer.

The hours I served at Square Roots will benefit the Old Town School of Folk Music. I chose to support this organization because I am hoping to make music a bigger part of my life this year, & I appreciate the global, community-spirited focus of the organization:

The Old Town School of Folk Music teaches and celebrates music and cultural expressions rooted in the traditions of diverse American and global communities and provides a wide range of music, dance, theater, and visual arts courses to people of all ages, abilities, and backgrounds. Whatever one’s interest, the Old Town School provides broad access to more than 700 accredited class offerings, private lessons, and workshops that span an array of artistic genres.

Plus, it’s right down the street from me and by way of volunteering, I’m able to earn points that I can use to take classes at the school…and cross another item off my list! (#2). I also stopped by the Chicago Printmaker’s Collaborative booth at the fest to learn about upcoming classes & got a good recommendation on where to start, so I’ll be enrolling in a 10-week, beginner screen-printing class in the fall. (#20).

During my Saturday shift, some of my favorite friends stopped by and surprised me with a Cubs ticket, so 1 random adventure led to another, as tends to happen with adventures. We ended up having 1 of the most ridiculous nights I’ve had in years, complete with a 3-hour dance party and some show-stopping moves. I am still laughing about it weeks later. My brother and his friends came by my tent on Sunday before heading to the Cubs game, and after my shift, I wandered around and took in all kinds of street-fest sights & sounds, at my own pace, on my own time, with nowhere to be but where I already was. I’ve not felt that peaceful, quiet, stillness in my heart in such a long time, and I’m doing everything I can to sustain it and appreciate the feeling when I have it.

So all in all: This list is coming alive and so am I. Looking forward to (at least) 29 more adventures this year & a lifetime of adventures beyond this list!

One thought on “#14: Volunteer to Support the Lincoln Square Community

  1. I adored this post Ash! Whenever I feel overwhelmed or sad about all the BS that has happened I keep repeating to myself “I am exactly where I need to be right now” So glad you had that same feeling! Keep it up! I LOVE THIS BLOG!

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