United Vision for Idaho Hosts Community Progressive in Soggy Julia Davis


United Vision for Idaho’s second-annual Community Progressive event got off to a slow and soggy start in Julia Davis Park on June 9. A handful of people braved the rain and below-average temperatures in the beginning of the day to dance along with the upbeat music of Marimba Boise. By mid-afternoon, the clouds parted and made way for the sun, as well as the Community Progressive spirit.

“We keep talking about the problems, and we have been talking about the problems for decades,” said Carolyn Failla, fair greeter for UVI. “I’m not interested in problems anymore. What United Vision is, and what a lot of the community is about, are the solutions to the problems. The Community Progressive is a bunch of our community offering solutions.”

Nonprofit Row featured tents filled with people offering solutions to problems regarding anything from alternative energy to women’s issues and education to military spending to social justice and the environment.

Representatives from organizations such as Occupy Boise, GMO Free Idaho, League of Women Voters, Food Not Bombs and U.S. Green Building Council mingled with attendees, answering questions and offering information.

“The people here are working on a solution,” Failla said. “Whatever is going on in the bigger circus of politics won’t matter if we have each other, and we have a really strong community that is representing itself here.”

A number of workshops were offered throughout the day, touching on political, environmental, health and social topics. In a discussion about activism, Matthew Sapiro Bryan Walker, megaphone in hand, addressed a group of listeners seated on the grass.

“All of these activists must hang together and show up to each other’s events,” Sapiro Walker said.

On the main and beer garden stages, 20 bands took turns throughout the day, enticing attendees to dance to sounds varying from marimba, to acoustic, to soul and blues.

At the outdoor marketplace, vendors chatted up festival-goers and wandered out of the safety of their tents, where they took solace from the rain that plagued the earlier hours of the festival. Tie-dyed fabrics, hula-hoops, lavender products, herbs and spices and florals were among the offerings in the marketplace.

Dumplings, beer and other Foodlandia delicacies rounded out the festival, where music, food and shopping mingled with progressive thinking.

“What we need to do is be brave and stand up and know that we are not alone in this,” Failla said. “One person’s voice is critical—and not all superheroes wear their underwear on the outside. There are people that will make your voice bigger, and together we are megaphones.”