I’m not sure who this should be addressed to – critics, organizers or attendees, or maybe everyone. But here goes.
Something skeptical people sometimes say is, “You can’t fix the economy.” That’s entirely true. I can’t fix the economy, and you can’t fix the economy, and your mayor can’t fix the economy. President Obama can’t; President Hollande can’t; Prime Minister Cameron can’t; President Hu Jintao can’t.
But what we can do is our part. When I lived in Cardiff, the Tesco I went to had a big sign that said, “Every little counts.” I was always confused by it until my dear friend Patrick explained that it meant, “every little bit counts.” He thought it was a relic of one of the Wars, and was being used to solicit donations for Tesco charities. But if you think about it, every little bit counts, and everything we do counts, and maybe we can’t solve everything, but we can solve what is in our power to solve and help the people and causes that are in our power to help, and as we improve our community businesses, our communities will improve, too.
This Saturday, we’re having a Cash Mob at Cleveland’s West Side Market. Just over 2,800 people have RSVP’d, and we got permission to use another parking lot to accommodate the mobbers. The reason: the market was closed after a stall caught fire, and all of the vendors lost out on weeks worth of earnings while the market was being cleaned. The WSM is a hub for the community; if it fell apart, or vendors closed, all of Ohio City would be affected. I don’t think I’ve ever seen such a stark example of how important small businesses are to the area in which they are located. If you’re around, please stop by and help out. Do your weekly grocery shopping there. Just do something. Do your part. :)
It turns out that the West Side Market clean-up took less time than expected, and after talking with Ohio City Inc., we’ve decided to move up the mob to THIS SATURDAY, Feb. 23, from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. The normal busy hours are between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., so get there early if you can! Also, Lutheran Hospital has graciously offered to let us use their parking lot for Cash Mobbers; enter the employee lot on the north side of Franklin between W. 25th and W. 28th. It is just a short walk away from the Market down West 25th Street! If you’re not car-bound, the RTA is just across the street.
Feel free to discuss it on the Facebook Event or here in the comments. Regardless, we hope to see you on Saturday for the biggest Cash Mob in history!
By now you’ve probably heard about the fire that has shut down part of the West Side Market for at least a few weeks. The market is going to have to be cleaned, brick by brick, and the vendors in the main hall have to throw out all of the food that they had for sale. While insurance might reimburse them for the lost merchandise, it usually doesn’t cover the money that they are losing by not being open.
Cash Mobs usually help support businesses that are doing well; we don’t prop up businesses that are struggling. However, this is a unique situation – the businesses aren’t struggling because of a bad business model, they are struggling because of catastrophe. So when we heard about the fire, we immediately decided we had to Cash Mob the West Side Market to help the vendors get back on their feet. Ohio City Incorporated jumped on immediately, and we started planning.
We’re tentatively planning for March 2, 2013; we still don’t know when the Market is going to open again. However, whenever it does, we’re going to Cash Mob it on the first Saturday we can. The rules are simple: show up with $20 to spend, talk to three people you didn’t know before, and have fun. We’re working on getting something together to thank mobbers – maybe coffee and cookies or something – and we will post details as we get them.
Last time we mobbed a market, 300 people put $9,000 into Nature’s Bin. Let’s see if we can beat that. Save the date and tell your friends and lets make this the best Cash Mob of all time to support the best market in America!
(Facebook invitation here.)