A Swing becomes much more than a playful pastime as it instantly sparks curiosity, refreshes our community’s perception of our environment and encourages immediate interaction with people we may have otherwise walked right past. Swings provide opportunities to share stories, ideas, and a set of arms to push each other!
Cultivating a tightly knit community based on love and respect indefinitely results in happier people, more opportunities to support and challenge each other, and the community solving problems more efficiently. A community focused on pushing past personal comfort zones in favor of meeting new people is a community with a strong future in deep relationships, connections, and engagement. Tampa Bay can be that community. We will continue to grow stronger as we encourage each other to spontaneously step out of our daily routine and adapt to a constantly changing environment.
Get people together, together.
What began as a successful environmental design project quickly turned into Reuben and Hunter hanging classic red Swings all over downtown St. Petersburg. They began to notice the simple power a random Swing had on our community: people that would have never even acknowledged each other were immediately magnetized to their new discovery and began sharing warm conversation and new experiences while pushing each other high up into the air.
They applied for the 10/100/1000 awards by Creative Tampa Bay and Creative Loafing, and won first place and $1000 for ‘the best idea to better the Tampa Bay Community’. They hosted their first “Let’s Paint Swings” event at the Saturday Morning Market and gave the opportunity for anyone to hand paint a swing to be hung or hang themselves. Over 100 Swings were painted that first day. They knew this was something Tampa Bay wanted and continued to spread the love.
As of August 2011, we’ve hung almost 50 Swings and have had over 400 painted by Tampa Bay at the last five “Let’s Paint Swings” events. 400!
We’ve hung Swings in multiple cities in the Tampa Bay Area and are always looking for exciting (spontaneous!) new locations. We’re always preparing for the many “Let’s Paint Swings” events planned for the future.
We are also in the process of officially registering as a 501(c)(3), working with the City of St. Petersburg to figure out more possibilities, and developing many more spontaneous community building projects to get people together, together! We’re always partnering with other non-profits to more fully realize each other’s missions by hosting “Let’s Paint Swings” events and donating professionally painted Swings for auction.
For the Future
We have plans to help other communities start the same thing we have here, and have already started with a few! We don’t plan on stopping hanging Swings anytime soon and will definitely be throwing out other spontaneous community building installations in the near future. Once we have our official 501(c)(3) status, we plan to apply for grants to start on bigger projects to help bring people in the Tampa Bay Community. Our ideas constantly change and grow, and we never know exactly where we are going.
We are always open to new ideas, and love any kind of help you would like to give!
Want us to hang a swing in your community space? Let us know!
We’re always looking for new friends to help! To be part of realizing Tampa Bay’s project please get in touch and we can talk about opportunities.
So far we have had help with hanging swings, painting events, marketing, city politics, and grant writing. What are you good at? Reach out and get involved!
Are you involved with another non-profit or project? We are always looking for ways to partner and work with other organizations. Get in touch and let’s help each other.
Spread the Word
Without you, nobody would know what we’re doing. If you like what we’re up to, let others know! Share our website, Facebook, and press articles with everyone you know! Want some stickers, or need some our info to give to others? Get in touch and let us know.
Swings doesn’t make money, and we don’t charge at our events. Everything is Free! Swings lives off of donations! If you want to help out, here are a few ways we have thought of:
Another installation that requires two. Coming soon!
St. Petersburg Chalk Buckets
Inspired by the great chalk-poet Jacob Christiano of Tampa Bay and “For the Love of Cities” by Peter Kageyama, Swings is leaving behind carefully placed buckets full of chalk all over St. Petersburg to encourage others to write/draw a message to their city.
“Lets Paint Swings”
Our “Let’s Paint Swings” events give the opportunity for anyone in the community to hand paint Swings. We bring everything you need to paint! We’re taking a break from painting for now..We’ve already had over 1,000 swings painted and are gonna focus more on hanging!
12.02.11 Check and Spots: Five Alive Friday
12.02.11 My Dot: “Swings” Brings People Together
11.28.11 PLAYSTUDIO: Building Community – One Swing at a Time
11.18.11 Phil Rules: Student Work: Swings Environmental Design
11.16.11 Minus10: GUERRILLA SWING
11.15.11 Ronorp.net: City Talk München [German]
11.15.11 Ronorp.net: City Talk Luzern [German]
11.15.11 Ronorp.net: City Talk Bern [German]
11.15.11 Ronorp.net Basel: Guerilla swings [German]
11.15.11 Ronorp.net: City Talk Zürich [German]
11.14.11 The Rumpus: Dan Weiss’s Morning Coffee
11.13.11 Obsessed Artist: Swings is a spontaneous community…
11.13.11 NOTCOT.org: Swings Tampa Bay
10.12.11 Discovering Art Beyond Sight
10.01.11 I’d Rather Smile: Swings
09.30.11 Art Taco: ArtOn! Central’s Live Arts Festival
09.22.11 Creative Loafing: Best of the Bay (p.19)
09.21.11 Thats Glitchy: Swings – Here, there, everywhere.
wUSF: University Beat + NPR
Radio – During “Morning Edition” on WUSF 89.7 Tues. at 6:30 AM and 8:30 AM | During “All Things Considered” on WUSF 89.7 Thurs. at 5:44 PM | After “Florida Matters” on WSMR 89.1 Friday at 7:30 PM
Television – Weekdays at 11:55 AM and 11:25 PM, and various times throughout the weekend
09.20.11 wUSF: University Beat Program
09.20.11 wUSF: University Beat, NPR Radio Broadcast
09.20.11 wUSF: University Beat interview with Peter Kageyama
09.20.11 wUSF: University Beat Front Page Feature
09.20.11 wUSF-TV: University Beat Interview #2
09.19.11 wUSF-TV: University Beat Interview #1
09.16.11 USFSP News: University Beat Feature
Release: 08-22-11 About us, Events, and Website Launch (PDF)
08.31.11 Patch: 5 Things to know Today
08.25.11 NOVA 535 Newsletter
08.23.11 Old NE Patch: Let’s Paint Swings at The Museum of Fine Arts
08.23.11 Gulfport Patch: Let’s Paint Swings at The Gulfport Geckofest
08.23.11 Old NE Patch: Let’s Paint Swings at The Globe Coffee Lounge
08.23.11 Old NE Patch: Let’s Paint Swings at USF St. Petersburg
08.26.11 St. Petersburg Times Section 3d Photo
06.14.11 Creative Loafing: 10/100/1000 Challenge winner “swings” onto TV
06.13.11 Fox13: Whats Right Tampa Bay (Video)
Etsy International Meetup Day
06.25.11 Eve-n-Odd: Etsy Day Highlights
06.12.11 Mimibun Blog: It’s been a busy weekend!
06.11.11 Old Northeast Patch: 600 Block’s Etsy Meetup Day
06.10.11 St. Pete Times Tampabay.com Things to do
Saturday Morning Market
05.28.11 Creative Tampa Bay Event
05.28.11 St. Pete Times Things to do
05.27.11 I Love the Burg: Weekly-Weekend-What-To-Do-In-the-Burg
05.27.11 TampaBayOnline Motherhood
05.25.11 TampaBay.com: Things to do (May 25-28)
05.19.11 What’s Doing Tampa Bay
05.27.11 keepinspiring.me: Just Swing
04.26.11 83 Degrees
04.25.11 USFSP Crows Nest Article
04.22.11 USF St. Peterburg: HarborNotes
04.20.11 Creative Tampa Bay Winner Article
04.15.11 Recreating Tampa: And the winner is… Swings!
04.15.11 Ybor City Stogie: Swings Tampa Bay
04.14.11 Creative Loafing Finalist and Competition Description
04.14.11 Creative Loafing 10/100/1000 Event
04.14.11 Channel 10: Studio 10