This week's feature points out that for those living off the grid, the world is full of free stuff -- and freedom.
At the heart of the radical movement is an emphasis on community -- because it would be difficult to maintain a lifestyle of conversation, creative projects and no cash if it weren't for an integrated system of trading information and resources. While there are always new projects springing up (and closing down) within the community, here are six of the more consistent, essential resources in Denver.
Once known as Derailer, Bike Pit continues the tradition of offering bicycle repair and education, and will even help you build your own bike from scratch from its vast collection of donated bicycle parts -- all free of charge. Bike Pit is located at 411 Lipan Street; check out theBike Pit Facebook page
for more information and to view the schedule for bike repair, bike building, and women and trans night.
Food Not Bombs
Gathering surplus food from grocery stores, markets and bakeries -- food that would otherwise be discarded -- this anarchist collective prepares large meals and packs up boxes of groceries for the needy. The meals are often vegan and nut-allergy friendly, and are always free of charge. FNB serves meals at Sunken Gardens Park at 4 p.m. every Saturday, and in Civic Center Park at 4 p.m. every Wednesday. Visit theFood Not Bombs website
for more information.
While the Denver Department of Environmental Health is emphatic in its opposition to eating out of dumpsters, the freegan community maintains that the dumpsters about town are a goldmine. "You can dumpster any kind of produce," says Joshua, who's profiled in this week's cover story. "Furniture, clothes, beer, bike parts, lumber, anything really. If the food smells bad, don't eat it -- but people who dumpster typically have stronger stomachs than most people."
Denver Collective Housing Network on Facebook
Built as a way to integrate the number of collective houses throughout Denver, this Facebook page provides a way for like-minded groups to share resources and trade services. You will have to be approved, but after that you'll have access to a community of people to give or get things like lumber, bicycle repair, produce or simply an invite to a show or party. Visit the Denver Collective Housing Network Facebook page for more information. Continue to keep counting down the six essential resources for living off the grid in Denver. 27 Social Centre
Located at 2727 West 27th Avenue in Highland, the 27 Social Centre is a large collective of various radical organizations that have banded together under one roof. A visit here provides a great overview of what Denver's alternative community has to offer; based here are P&L Printing, Sent(a)mental Studios, Denver Anarchist Black Cross, Denver Community Health Collective, Improbable Pictures, the renowned Denver Zine Library, and many other operations. Visit the their website 27 Social Centre webside for more information. Free School Denver
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A collective of various independent teachers, students and organizers (many people are all three), Free School Denver offers everything from practical classes on gardening, foreign language, soap-making and bicycle repair to more esoteric classes on fermenting kombucha or lectures on the history of gender and sexuality in imperialism. Go to the Free School Denver website for more information.
Follow me on Twitter at @JosiahMHesse.
More from our Politics archive: "Stephen Polk, UCD lecturer, on anarchy, Occupy and the failure of democracy."