So it seems that we missed this year’s Obscura Day, “A day of expeditions, back-room tours and hidden treasures in your hometown,” introduced to us last year by former SOTRU Radio Producer Zak Rosen. The day is celebrated in cities and towns throughout the world, with the highest concentration taking place in the United States. It’s a fantastic window into the types of people and places that give a community its uniqueness. Be sure to visit the official Obscura Day website to learn more and check out Zak’s post from last year about it.
My friends at the Craig Fahle Show just made me aware of Obscura Day, coming up on Saturday. It’s “an international celebration of wondrous, curious, and esoteric places,” with local events being held all over the country. It’s all being organized by the zany folks at Atlas Obscura, “a collaborative project with the goal of cataloging all of the singular, eccentric, bizarre, fantastical, and strange out-of-the-way places that get left out of traditional travel guidebooks and are ignored by the average tourist.”
The idea behind Obscura Day made me think about a project that I previously worked on. A few years ago, I produced an audio portrait of Jenenne Whitfield for Studio 360.
Jenenne is the Executive Director of the Heidelberg Project on Detroit’s eastside. Not only is the Heidelberg wondrous and exotic, but it’s also a community hub, a creative statement, and one neighborhood’s unexpected salvation.
Is there a place like this in your hometown? If so, tell me about it by commenting below. Maybe SOTRU will head your way for a future episode.
Happy Obscura Day!