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A Grand Day Out

One of this summer's most popular holiday activities in Bristol is Gromit Unleashed, the Gromit Trail. Wallace and Gromit were created by Nic Park for his graduation film A Grand Day Out from The National Film and Television School. He completed the film after joining Aardman Animations - they took him on before he finished the piece, allowing him to work on it part-time while still being funded by the school. Ever since then, Wallace and Gromit have continued their adventures, and Aardman have continued to document them. Wallace is a Yorkshireman (he was going to be a Lancastrian but the actor who voiced him could only do Yorkshire) who loves Wensleydale cheese, Gromit is his dog. Wallace is a dreamer, a creator of fabulous inventions, Gromit (though mute) his down-to-earth and capable rescuing sidekick. The Gromit Trail is a series of 80 model Gromits placed in and around Bristol, and the activity is to try and see them all. There's a map, toys, model Gromits and an auction at the end, in aid of Bristol Children's Hospital. [more inside]
posted by glasseyes on Aug 12, 2013 - 26 comments

 

Football Mascots, English Democrats And Shadow Mayors

The Local Government Act 2000 brought directly elected mayors to the UK. Take up was limited and success was mixed. If you were lucky you got Stuart Drummond. If you were unlucky you got Peter Davies. Davies, the mayor of Doncaster, is widely seen to have exacerbated existing problems in the town.

This week, the Localism Bill was introduced to Parliament promising referenda on directly elected mayors in the twelve largest cities in England. In advance of this, council leaders are being turned into 'shadow mayors'. The problem? The leaders don't actually want these new powers.
posted by ninebelow on Dec 16, 2010 - 9 comments

Butthole Surfers

There is such infinite dirty pleasure in burning a righteous kook. An introduction to the sometimes violent phenomenon of surfer localism and the strict enforcement of surf etiquette. A Tragicomedy of the Surfers' Commons?
posted by eddydamascene on Apr 25, 2010 - 49 comments

Consider the Source

"It's a different way of thinking about 'local' that's not quite as literal," says a consumer research consultant in an article running this week in alternative newspapers nationwide. The piece (by Stacy Mitchell of the Institute for Local Self-Reliance) describes the response of global and national companies to the reality that consumers are moving more of their dollars into purchasing at locally owned businesses, representing both a threat, and an opportunity for companies that can successfully rebrand themselves as 'local'. As with greenwashing before it, 'localwashing' seeks to lure customers based on perception of values alone, resulting in such phenomena as Frito-Lay highlighting farmers from 27 states as the "local" growers for its potato chips and Hellman's Mayonnaise piloting a campaign in Canada to present its product as 'local' because most of the ingredients are from North America.
posted by Miko on Aug 5, 2009 - 58 comments

FCC Moves to Change Ownership Rules Again

The FCC, again, moves to loosen ownership rules for television and newspapers. A similar proposal in 2003 drew huge public opposition. This time, there is a narrow window for public comment, ending in mid-November. You can contact the FCC or go to the Common Cause page. [more inside]
posted by McLir on Oct 28, 2007 - 32 comments

100-Mile Diet

How Much Fossil Fuel Does Your Dinner Burn? Ingredients for the average American meal travel well over 1500 miles to reach your plate. Our food might be inexpensive, but it's costing the planet a lot (and doesn't taste so hot either, since it's bred to withstand shipping and have long shelf life rather than to taste good). So what happens when people reject the large-scale industrial food system? One recent development in the growing localism movement is the 100-Mile Diet, originated by a Canadian couple who spent a full year eating only foods grown or raised within 100 miles of their home. They'll even give you a road map to having a 100-Mile Thanksgiving. For other variations on the eat-local idea, check out ideas like the Eat Local Challenge, Slow Food, and Locavores encourage you to rediscover your place on earth, build community, and enjoy the Local Harvest.
posted by Miko on Oct 18, 2006 - 66 comments

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