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Monday, March 14, 2005

ReVitalize St. Louis

New Grassroots Organization
Committed to St. Louis' Revitalization
Announces Formation

As you may or may not know, The Rehabbers Club will be celebrating its 5th Anniversary in October of this year. From its humble beginnings as a small monthly support group, our membership now numbers nearly 1400! It is wonderful that so many people are interested and involved in caring for St. Louis' building heritage.

As the Rehabbers Club expanded in membership, broadened its base, and took on additional projects like the semi annual "Works in Progress" tour and the rehabbers classes, its organizational needs have changed. Handling money, building organizational capacity to manage projects, accepting donations, and sustaining the group require a level of organization above the loose affiliation of the e-mail list we all know and love.

A group of volunteers has been working diligently to lay the ground work for this new organization. So today, with much pride, we announce ReVitalize St. Louis!

We are a diverse coalition of citizens committed to revitalization in the city of St. Louis through historic preservation and sensitive, planned development. We address social, political and economic issues as they impact each of St. Louis' neighborhoods.

Through partnerships, education, outreach, and support, we hope to create positive change in the urban St. Louis community with an eye towards preserving and rejuvenating the city's physical landscape and inspiring progressive civic action.

Claralyn Bollinger (Treasurer), Marti Frumhoff (President), Tim Klaas, La'Shonda Turner-Brown (Vice President), Gayle Van Dyke, Steven Wilke-Shapiro (Secretary), and Taron Young.

St. Louis Rehabbers Club: This is a Yahoo! Groups email listserve that boasts over 1300 members - from an original group of 23 just 5 short years ago! This group shares everything from seasoned "how-to" content and where to live, to which local hardware store carries a hard-to-find item and who to contact at city hall for permits as well as a slew of other rehab-related subjects. The group meets once a month in a different city neighborhood with a determined goal of visiting all 79 designated areas over time.

Rehabbers Classes: Created out of a request for in-depth subject coverage from Rehabbers Club members, the classes, begun in 2003, have been a wonderful addition to the rehabbing community. The 14-week once-a-week classes have highlighted diverse subjects like historic tax credits, environmentally-responsible rehabbing, and both mixed-use and urban redevelopment issues, just to name a few.

The Big BIG Tour: This huge city-wide house tour with on-site homebuyer's fair is enjoying its sixth successful year. It is totally free to the public and is a very popular venue with sponsors and exhibitors as well as the thousands of attendees who have passed through its doors over the years.

The Rehabbers Club won't change. Those who want to continue to share renovation knowledge and resources online and at the monthly Rehabbers Club meetings probably won't notice a difference.

However, there will be many opportunities for anyone who is interested to become more involved in reshaping the City. Please consider volunteering for one of the working committees or helping out at one of our many events.

Our working committees are Built Environment, Fundraising, Marketing, and Programming. We hope you will join us in creating the foundations for these committees as they take shape.

Our small and humble website is in the works and if you're interested in becoming a member, we have membership opportunities available, all of which we'll be telling you about very soon.

We look forward to your involvement and input as we all move forward together in continuing this great renaissance in the city of St. Louis!


Marti Frumhoff

ReVitalize St. Louis
P.O. Box 63062
St. Louis, MO 63163

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