The City of Asheville in its 2015 Asheville in Motion Plan suggested a trial of open streets events. After years of discussion among city visionaries and advocates for community health and active transportation, planning began in 2015 for the inaugural event with leadership and partial funding organized by the Mountain Area Health Education Center (MAHEC). In 2016, Open Streets Asheville held its first mid-September, Sunday afternoon event. Feedback from 2016 attendees, street partners, and sponsors was overwhelmingly positive. Respondents asked us to go bigger & better in 2017!
Open Street Asheville’s Goals
We are building a future in which our streets support active transportation, nurture community, and respond to Asheville’s expressed needs for a happier, healthier Asheville. Our movement established the first 2 goals for 2016, adding a third before the 2017 event:
- Build Health & Wellness
- Build Community Connections
- Inspire Advocacy for Asheville’s Future
(Newly inspired by the fun of open streets, planners wondered what can cooperative groups of individuals, governmental entities and nonprofits achieve for Asheville? Might the cooperative spirit arising from our events empower Asheville in other areas, too? These thoughts encouraged us to add the third goal shown above.)
Do you share the vision? Get involved now as a Sponsor, Street Partner or Volunteer!
Bring your Message to Open Streets
Do you represent a minority-owned business or advocacy organization? Do you have friends or contacts who do?
Open Streets Asheville (Sun Sept 17, 1-5 PM) fills car-free downtown streets with free entertainment and educational fun for the entire community, promoting physical activity and building community all the while.
In our second year, we’re seeking to increase participation by minority communities in our effort to build resilient community across sectors through shared fun in the streets. It’s a great time to step up, as detailed planning is underway!
Please call Event Organizer Danise Hauser at (828) 337-5174 or contact Open Streets through this website or any of our social media platforms to learn more about becoming an Activity Partner (no cost involved) or helping us in other ways to reach all Asheville.
Last September, 50 organizations invited residents to come play in car-free downtown streets, and 1,500 Ashevillians came. Feedback included these gems:
“This event was such a home run! My daughter loved riding her bike downtown and the on street activities were great. Please keep having more Open Streets events!”
“…it was like a wonderful dream…”
“Community, family fun without motorized vehicles. Wonderful!”
Get involved! Consider sponsoring this year’s event, hosting an on-street activity, or volunteering to help make it happen.
What is Open Streets Asheville?
Ask most anyone and they’ll excitedly explain we’re the people who do all-free-fun-on-car-free-streets. True. We say we’re a movement that’s designing Asheville’s future by inspiring health & wellness and building community on our largest public spaces, the streets. Each of the events we host takes place for a few hours on car-free streets forming a downtown route that hugs Asheville landmarks. With eager participation from local groups, we fill the streets with free yoga, massage, dance, pop-up playgrounds, bike skills clinics, local shopping, arts and much more. Sidewalk storefronts offer special sales and cafes offer pop-up service in the street. Learn about getting involved in the fun as a sponsor, street partner or volunteer here.)
OUR SPONSORS 2016
Contact Danise Hauser, Event Coordinator, with your questions at (828) 337-5174 or send us a message below.