Debra Ann Mumm is one of my favorite people in the entire Coachella Valley.
I’ve been fortunate enough to work with Debra in a variety of ways over the years. Way back when we launched our monthly print edition in 2013, her then-store Venus Studio Art Supply sponsored our launch party, with Ryan Campbell creating a mural-sized artwork live. I served with her on the Desert Business Association board of directors. I’m also proud to call her my friend.
Today, Debra runs the CREATE Center for the Arts, a Palm Desert arts nonprofit that is doing amazing things. Despite the obvious challenges, the pandemic hasn’t stopped Debra and CREATE from doing amazing things; in fact, they’ve stepped up to fill a community need: The CREATE Center has mobilized its 3-D printing capabilities—and those of others—to make personal protective equipment for the local medical community.
Anyway … a week or so ago, I was inspired by an idea that originated by the Chicago Reader and The Pitch newspaper in Kansas City. I called Debra and asked if she wanted to partner up to do it, and she agreed.
Ladies and gentleman: It’s time to announce the Coachella Valley Independent Coloring Book.
This is a quick turnaround project … and it’s going to be a whole lot of fun. We’re inviting local artists and designers to participate by drawing a page—locally themed, if possible–of the coloring book. The proceeds will be split between the Independent, the CREATE Center and the group of artists that participate.
Take note: The deadline for art is 1 p.m., Friday, April 10. That’s a week from today! The details can be found here. Enjoy!
And now, the news:
• Sad news: The Purple Room’s last night of takeout/curbside food and drink will be Saturday. Inspiring news: The space will be turned into two assembly lines for the CV Mask Project, which is trying to meet the need of 45,000 disposable gowns for Eisenhower Medical Center in the coming weeks. Good news: Michael Holmes and co. will continue doing their fantastic live shows via Facebook on Wednesday and Saturday. See Michael Holmes’ explanation here.
• From the Independent, via our partners at High Country News: It’s important to get outside during these trying times—but it’s important to do so ethically and responsibly.
• The city of Palm Springs has told some businesses that have boarded up their windows that they need to take the boards down. This, understandably, has ticked off said business owners. Anyway, here’s the city’s explanation.
• Dammit, can’t we have ANYTHING nice right now? Turns out Zoom, the platform everyone’s using for online meetings and whatnot, is the subject of some nasty hacking—and an FBI warning.
• Some smart people from UC Riverside explain why stay-at-home orders need to last at least six weeks. Bleh.
• Depressingly related: Some countries that had made progress in fighting back COVID-19 are shutting some things down again as the virus makes a comeback.
• A group from Washington state is suing Fox News for calling the COVID-19 pandemic a hoax.
• In other lawsuit news, businesses around the country are suing local and state governments for shutting them down, because … freedom?
• So, are we going to war with Canada now, because the feds are trying to stop US companies from sending medical equipment there? (Just kidding about the war part … maybe?)
• If you don’t mind reading scientific writing, this piece from Nature Medicine explains why wearing a mask is a good idea.
• Goodness gracious, that’s a lot of depressing news. Let’s change gears to happier things, and talk about “Virtual Hugs,” thanks to the LGBT Center of the Desert and Destination PSP. It’s actually a fundraiser: Destination PSP is selling a line of “Virtual Hugs” T-shirts and caps, with the proceeds going to The Center and its vital work. Learn more here from The Center here, and buy the T-shirts here.
• Vulture.com did an amazingly wonderful thing: It asked more than 35 TV showrunners and writers what their famous characters would do in this pandemic. The results are splendid. My favorite: Veep’s Selina Meyer would have handled this crisis … brilliantly?
• The cancelled SXSW’s film festival portion will live on online, thanks to help from Amazon.
• NASA has a wonderful resource packed with information and lessons for kids and families. It’s called NASA at Home.
• Wanna learn more about Japanese cooking? Our friends at Wabi Sabi Japan Living are offering the latest in their series of Facebook Live classes tomorrow.
• Google has developed a website with downloadable data on states and countries’ mobility trends during the pandemic, using anonymous location data.
Tomorrow’s my unplug-for-the-sake-of-sanity day, so we’ll be back Sunday. In the meantime, if you’re an artist, get us your coloring book submissions. Support our efforts to continue to do great local journalism if you can. Oh, and wash your hands.