People go to a gym to exercise their physical health or a church to exercise their spiritual health, and the non-profit organization, Warm Cookies of the Revolution, encourages people to exercise their civic health. They host a variety of events around the city that combine social activities with important issues.
“We mix fun with serious stuff,” says Chris Getzan, program manager of Warm Cookies. “We want a revolution in values like Martin Luther King, Jr., but we also like cookiesand football, and superhero movies.”
Warm Cookies” events take place at different venues and are designed to foster discussion, connect people, and inspire them to get involved in their communities—a bit like social media in person. Recently, they hosted a pro-wrestling event at which they discussed what sanctuary means, and heard from several community members who have experienced it firsthand. Donations collected benefitted Metro Denver Sanctuary Coalition, to help two women currently in sanctuary.
Getzan says you don’t have to know anything about the topic discussed to attend—some people come just for the fun and others for the topic, and either reason is fine. “We are anti-jargon,” Getzan says, “and if we can’t tell you what an event is about, we are probably doing it wrong.”
The concept for Warm Cookies came from Evan Weissman, who is also the founder of the collaborative theater group, Buntport Theater. “(Evan) would look around (Buntport Theater), on the weekend there would be 200 people that had come to see a play about a talking rabbit. He thought, ‘Wouldn’t it be great if I could get this many people to come, but talk about really important topics?” ” explains Getzan.
Warm Cookies generally attracts folks from central Denver in their 20s, 30s, and 40s, “along with some cool hippies,” Getzan says. “It’s kind of a young NPR crowd, and parents are definitely a piece of that.” Though many of their community events are geared toward adults, childcare is always available on request.
Once or twice a month, Warm Cookies offers an event called Boogie Down, where parents can come out to hear great music while their young kids dance along. There’s an instrument petting zoo, and games or activities, along with information and resources to help people engage with their community on a certain topic, such as racial justice.
“We definitely want to bring in folks from all over the city,” Getzan says. “If we want to change stuff, then let’s all be involved.”
HOW FAMILIES CAN HELP
Come to a Warm Cookies event; upcoming dates, times, and topics are listed online. “Get a feel for it, and see if we are the kind of people you want to hang out with,” Getzan says. “Then, set up a coffee with myself or Evan to talk.”
Warm Cookies of the Revolution