Connecting communities – A board game to celebrate the Ranges

As we come out of COVID days, Macedon Ranges Council is supporting the community by funding 10 artists to deliver a range of Creative Encounters projects before the end of June.
One of these projects is Connecting Communities – a board game about Macedon Ranges Shire. Artist and writer Jenni Ivins is asking for your help.
“I want the game to represent the whole area and what we love about living here,” Jenni said.
“I need people to spread the word about the opportunity, and to join the conversations about what is treasured here, sharing stories and photos, and even artwork.”
The project has two parts. The end result will be a board game in which people can see their ideas or artwork on the back of the GO-TO cards that players will use to move from town to town around the game board.
The other equally important part will be connecting through the sharing of stories and information about our favourite places (maybe secret places) and great things to see and do in Macedon Ranges.
Jenni has created the ‘Connecting Communities’ Facebook group, where people can join in conversations or start their own. They can post photos of what they find special, such as unique landscapes, flora and fauna, festivals, clubs and more.
Those who are not on Facebook but would still like to send pictures can connect with Jenni via her website www.minddrawing.net or email art@minddrawing.net
The Connecting Communities game will be published in the Midland Express in June and council will print copies and place them in local libraries. There will also be a PDF version of the game available in the Connecting Communities Facebook group.
The design includes 72 cards to be published in the Midland Express, along with a double-spread game board. If suitable, submitted pictures will all be in the PDF version of the game that people can print at home in a larger size if desired.
“You don’t have to be an artist to take part in Connecting Communities,” Jenni said.
“You don’t even have to send drawings or photos. But if you do, I will need your permission to use the pictures you submit for the project.”
Jenni delivered a similar project, A Part Together, when Cardinia Shire was in stage-four lockdown. Many participants joined in conversations and discovered exciting places to visit and explore in their home towns.
A list of topics was created, and some people created drawings or sent photos that Jenni either drew or turned into digital drawings.
“We had a lot of positive feedback from people who enjoyed being part of the creative process, as well as from families who learnt about treasures in their own backyards while playing the game together,” she said.
The project was nominated for an Australia Day award for the Best Community Event.
If you have a connection with Macedon Ranges Shire, you are invited to join the Connecting Communities Facebook group to keep up to date about the project and to connect with others to share stories about what you love about living in Macedon Ranges Shire.
“I look forward to getting to know the locals and discovering more about the area and fun things to do here,” Jenni said.

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