It Just Might Work: A downtown bulletin board for fliers

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Several people at a recent public forum on the music scene in Winston-Salem said the city needs more places for people to post fliers. (file photo)

“Sound Ecology,” the massively well-attended public forum on the health of Winston-Salem’s music scene, took place in early January right around the time the retirement of Phuzz Phest [see story on page 18] was announced. The conversation spun off at least one really good idea that should be easily doable.

Among the musicians and promoters in the room, several people complained that there’s nowhere to post fliers for upcoming shows. I personally thought fliers were a relic of the ’80s that had been consigned to oblivion as a tool for promoting shows by email listservs in the ’90s, but what do I know?

Eddie Garcia, a veteran of the music scene (1970s Film Stock, formerly Jews & Catholics) and a producer at WFDD, noted during the forum that instead of railing at the man when your fliers are torn down, it’s often more effective to reach out to city leaders and explain your challenge. You can’t blame them for not understanding your issue if you’ve never made it a point to introduce yourself, and as often as not they’ll want to help when you fill them in. In Winston-Salem, the city outsources a lot of decisions about the regulation of public space in downtown to the non-profit Downtown Winston-Salem Partnership. It’s good to know who does what.

True to the way most things get done — that is, by individual initiative rather than committee — Garcia has volunteered to talk to Jason Thiel, the partnership’s president, about easing restrictions on downtown fliering. In a Facebook chat on Tuesday, Garcia acknowledged that a centrally located public space for fliers would be nice.

In the meantime, Garcia posted an incredibly helpful list of 27 locations in and around downtown that allow fliering, including college campuses, coffee houses, bars, restaurants and bookstores, on the new Winston-Salem Music Facebook page.

Thiel told Triad City Beat on Tuesday that he looks forward to working with the musicians to provide more places to post fliers.

“We have a kiosk on Fourth Street that we would put posters that people would bring to us,” he said. “We had another one down near Winston Square Park that was recently destroyed by a drunk driver, sadly, and then there’s one on Trade Street because it got out of disrepair.

“We’re always open to that idea of having a central location for having a central location,” he added. “I think that’s a great idea.”

Once people start talking, you never know what can happen.