Bloomington Citizens Help Make One Million Stars to End Violence

BY BARB BERGGOETZ Six-year-old children created the brightly colored stars. So did women in nursing facilities, Girls and Boys Club members, Girl Scouts, teens in after-school programs, and people incarcerated.    For more than a year, stars took shape one by one, meticulously constructed of ribbons and recycled materials, part of a local community-wide effort joining the international One Million Stars to End Violence project. By January, Bloomington — one of only four U.S. communities to take part in the Australian-based initiative — had exceeded its goal of making 10,000 eight-pointed stars under the leadership of the Lotus Education and Arts Foundation. More than 11,500 stars were made locally. Lotus adopted the project for its 2016 visual arts initiative. “It’s […]

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Ellyn Barham-Pruitt: Keeping Gumboot Dance and Its History Alive in Bloomington

BY SOPHIE BIRD When Ellyn Barham-Pruitt moved to Bloomington just 10 days after graduating from high school, she didn’t expect to be introduced to a style of dance that would come to mean so much to her. She still remembers the thrill she felt when she saw the IU Gumboot Dancers take the stage at Indiana University’s annual CultureFest. Although she didn’t have much of a dance background, that experience inspired her to begin practicing with the group nearly every Sunday while at IU. “I found it so intriguing and empowering to watch them dance,” she says. “They loved what they were doing and I wanted to be a part of it.” The gumboot dance is performed wearing Wellington boots, […]

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