HOBOKEN, NJ - The local team behind Main Street Pops, a Hoboken-based pop-up programming company, is popping up again-virtually, with an important purpose.
With an original mission to activate unused spaces with events to create community connections, they quickly pivoted during the onset of the COVID Pandemic to create a series of virtual fundraising events and raised over $18,000 for local Hoboken first responders and COVID relief efforts. Their next project addresses other pressing issues on everyone’s mind these days—besides the upcoming election!
“We pop up where we feel our community most needs us”, said one of Main Street Pops’ Founders, Zabrina Stoffel. “The nation is grappling with so much now; and we want to be part of the solution. So we created a platform that explores some of the most important topics facing us today; racial injustice and the environment.” The collection of film shorts from around the country feature inspiring personal journeys of those facing racial injustice who have overcome adversity to make a change, all with an environmental theme.
Premiering on October 19th with a ten-day video on demand good through October 29th, this project has already generated much buzz. (Get your tickets here at: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/representation-matters-10-days-video-on-demand-tickets-123381554551 )
Originally curated as a virtual film screening for the community, they’ve had such great feedback that they are now providing corporations and other groups the “Representation Matters” films to incorporate into their equity and diversity training goals for this year.
It was certainly part of Main Street Pops’ goals. “During a recent EDI (Equity/Diversity/Inclusion) workshop, we realized that reading articles and posting about our support was just not enough. We wanted to do something that truly made a difference, and we knew we were in a unique position to give voice to those whose stories needed to be shared.”, Co Founder Tracy Gavant explains. Having already worked with The Wild & Scenic Film Festival as a National Tour Host, they approached them to help create a film program that would address the intersection between social justice and environmental, and “Representation Matters” was born.
Gavant added, “These are difficult subjects to understand and to talk about. These hopeful and inspiring films are powerful conversation starters.”
Individual tickets are available for $10.00 at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/representation-matters-10-days-video-on-demand-tickets-123381554551
They will also include a link for ticket holders to contribute to the ACLU when making their purchase. Here is a teaser trailer for “Detroit Hives”, one of the films highlighted in the program:
Main Street Pops has also created a Virtual Education Film Program for children ages K-12, which included the “Representation Matters” films for middle schoolers and above as well as an Environmental Educational Series with film blocks curated at three different levels for elementary, middle and upper schools. Each program comes with discussion questions, writing assignments and recycled art project ideas to extend the curriculum and further engage the students.
“Families and schools are struggling with how to keep children safe but also engaged, excited and involved. These programs seemed like a way to do it all.”
Added their partner, Shan Gettens. “ We wanted to provide a “virtual field trip” for students at a time when extracurricular activities are so limited.” With the video-on-demand format, educators have the flexibility to view the films in person as a class if allowed, or individually at home followed with virtual discussions online as needed.
For more information on the Education Program or to bring “Representation Matters” to your organization, please email email@example.com.
CLICK HERE to purchase tickets for the October 19-29th screening.