Submitted by Jeff Buster on Thu, 05/18/2006 - 12:23.

Buster’s wrong.

After sleeping on this for a night, I recognized that the headline “Pretty Pathetic Participation” is wrong - I appear to be faulting the non-participants who are actually victims of a poor advance publicity effort – I should be pointing out that the paid (and if there were volunteer) organizers of this event appear to not have done their advance publicity work very well.  The proof is in the pudding – there were more sponsor type people behind the tables under the tent than there were people on the public sidewalk side.  Preaching to the converted is (very enjoyable but) not a test of one’s persuasiveness and not the way to produce  change.


I met 3 employees who were there from the RTA – I assume they were there on the RTA’s  payroll clock.  They were handing out free ride passes.   That made sense.  It does clearly make sense for the RTA to be a sponsor of No Car Day.   But was the RTA involved in the pre-event publicity?  Did anyone see any notices promoting the event on the buses or trains? 


There was a 10 wheel highway tractor pulling a stainless steel chemical tank trailer (with an RTA banner on the side of the tank) parked at the curb.   That was kinda weird. I wonder if the tractor trailer was paid for? 


There was a very loud DJ with speakers blarring out into the street. Who paid for the DJ guy?   What does loud R&R have to do with “No Car Day”.    I suggest lose the noise next time around.


Great Lakes brewery’s 15 passanger van was there.   Too early in the day for a frosty but GLB is pro-actively on the sustainable side of the table which puts them way ahead of Bud.  


There was a green-squirrel-dressed-clown-type-person jumping at the curb and waving to passing cars – some of which would honk.   I didn’t really get that green squirrel connection either.


There was a new bright red hybrid ride share car on display for no car day.  Though that is a bit of a non- sequitur,  Ryan McKenzie’s   hybrids and ride sharing are moving the environment in the right direction. 


David Beach of Eco City  did a quick cameo for a photo (See inset photo - I didn’t see a bike)


What did make sense was Jim Sheehan’s riding to work to represent the Ohio City Bicycle Co-op .    Kevin Cronin’s advance work  with  made sense  and Kevin’s posting of the event on the calendar at is why I was involved) made sense.  Having Earth Day Coalition  involved made sense having     The Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency   involved (Noaca handed out the energy efficient 100watt fluorescent light bulbs  - cost from$1.82 each  - had second lowest price at $1.90.)


I’m not sure who was hosting the bagels and OJ. 


Clearly a lot of established organizations were involved, and everything went smoothly except for the fact that basically there was no public  attendance.  This actually can have the effect of discouraging the causes which are hoping for advancement.


I  recommend that future events,  if they are to be held, are publicized effectively enough to bring enough citizen involvement to justify the public and private funds and time committed.


What was the $ cost per contact made with the public at this event?  What was the overall taxpayer funded budget for this event? Whatever the budget the money did not have an effective return.   Any money available for messages about the environment needs to be spent wisely. 


There is another ride Friday, May 19, 2000 ending a Rocco’s.   See event here : 

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Jeff - you want to help with transit for big lead rally?

Okay Mr. Transit solutions, I'm on a committee to help organize a lead poisoning Gospel Funeral March through downtown Cleveland and a rally at City Hall Rotunda and the Free Stamp park - this will be during Lead Awareness Week - probably July 15th - and we want to get 1,000s of people out from all parts of the community and walks of life. We have our next planning meeting next Friday and I am helping map out transportation - RTA need to play a major role, with free passes and PR - the eco world in general needs to wake up about lead and get involved if they want to be anbe to raise children in the urban frontier, like Tremont, so it is time for everyone to get together - I'll delive the Prayer Warriors - we want to have a 2,000 shoes display for the chidren lead posioned... anyways - want to help organize transportation and relations with RTA?

how do we get the lead out?

It seems to me that someone in City governments should be addressing this 2010 deadline. noted in this article about the lead threat in NYC.

Can we know who is tasked with this mandate in our region and have them on camera responding to questions about the issue? Can we have them on WVIZ ideas with Rick Jackson? Can we get a local pediatrician who has patients that they can talk about who are afflicted?

It seems we need a GET THE LEAD OUT! campaign.

Ever wonder why kids who live in poverty stricken areas like neighborhoods served by the Cleveland Municipal School District don't seem to be able to learn??? Don't let another generation of Cleveland's children struggle with learning because of poorly enforced housing issues. GET THE LEAD OUT of our neighborhoods.

News release we may see... Sherwin Williams pays reparations to families for lead poisoning.
OK they avoided punitive damages, but maybe they can get on with funding the education issues.
Oops no they didn't avoid the damages after all
Maybe Rick Jackson would interview the Sherwin Williams CEO or public spokesman for a response from the company. Let's hear about what happened in the Rhode island case and get that update.

We need the facts, ma'am.

I'm getting the lead out, with GCLAC and CCOAL

Susan, you've missed the top environmental issue in the region - its been front and center since the beginning of realneo. I'm co-chair of the Sustainability and Instrastructure Sub-Committee of GCLAC, the Greater Cleveland Lead Advisory Council, and on the Board of Directors of CCOAL, Cleveland Communities Organized Against Lead, and I'm working on bringing litigation to Northeast Ohio against the paint and lead industries - read realneo and you'll learn everything you need - join my subcommitte at GCLAC, or CCOAL, if you really want to make a difference in the environment and 1,000s of lives in NEO... this is the frontline...


Hello Isko!

I have no training as a publicist - which I see as boiling down to the ratio of cost per participant to   get a particular message across to a particular audience to cause that audience to take a particular action.     $ of advertising spent /acting person. 


But one needs to go for the free ad exposure first – will the RTA allow on board advertising?  How about a few public service bill boards around town.   I will be glad to make a pitch to the RTA for ad space but will first need the campaign ad copy to show them. 


You need good graphics and a catchy slogan.  Let’s choreograph  a hip hop team doing screaming dance moves up and down the Terminal Tower Rapid escalator.   Check this idea out… Seriously… put on your IPOD earbuds and play Micheal Jackson’s  “Billy Jean” “not my son” loud…picture use of the escalator to lift dancers up while others are schussing down the handrails – music pounding the walls while  the public (actually extras) blithely go to work briefcase in hand. 




On every billboard, on the radio, on TV, on the RTA


 Robin Van Lear or another dance choreographer might be able to help put this together.   With music and dance energy visuals, we’d have a made for TV publicity shoot.   To really collect the crowds – you gotta go to TV with music and a message to the younger set. 


And give-a-ways bring in the curious crowds.  Free lead test kits would be a draw.  Who will come up with the money to buy the lead test kits?  Does Ohio have a lead awareness and eradication budget that could be tapped? 


The City is probably going to be on the fence – since Sherwin Williams calls Cleveland home.  By the way, where did you catch that old hardware store paint sign?

quieter promotion ad ideas for RTA

Promotion ideas  --"instead of driving to work today, I read the newspaper, answered all my email, planned a meeting, knitted a sweater, closed a deal, got a date, finished my homework, studied for the bar exam, authored a webpage." I'm sure there are lots of sexy ideas someone can think of that represent the sorts of things people could do instead of driving. This is footage of people on a rail car.


You see the handsome 25 year old drop dead gorgeous guy in a $3,000 suit getting on the bus while saying into his cell phone, "I will be there at 10. My driver is picking me up right now". You see him with the laptop open. He steps off the bus and walks into a building and into well appointed offices, greeted by a sexy assistant who hands him his mail. He closes the office door and takes a long look at Lake Erie. The sky is BLUE. The narrative talks about how his company rewards his use of public transit. "RTA gets you where you need to go"


Image of a mid-career well appointed woman using her PDA to do trip planning in a coffee shop. She drops the PDA in her briefcase and steps out the door and onto a bus. "Get there on the RTA."

Leave your car at home: carpooling to the park and ride

The guy kisses his Beamer goodbye and gives it a pat as he jumps into another's car. They exchange "how about those Browns?" They walk from the park-and-ride lot to board the bus briefcases in hand. The moral: money saved, NOX and VOCs saved, time saved.

Alternately you see the guy who is sitting in his car in traffic, sitting in line at the parking garage, driving around and around the parking structure. He's frustrated. You see the guy on his bike putting it in the rack and then getting off, locking it and bounding up the steps of the big building downtown and then the signed document, the handshake and smiles all around. Getting to work. "Rack and roll makes it easy" The bike guy is fit, the other guy is overweight and the close is the overweight guy looking forlorn as he plods on the stationary bike at the gym at 9 p.m.


On a beautiful spring morning, you see a father and son in a central city neighborhood (identified by a street sign or other urban identifier) they are putting their bikes on the bus. As they ride, they look at each other. They are seen riding through the park, stopping by a stream or overlooking a ledge or meadow. The kid is turning over rocks in the stream or skipping stones as the father looks on "Get out of town on the RTA"

Yes, I forwarded these ideas to RTA before Christmas. Search trip planner on this site for more transit help ideas I posted here.

Excellent visuals, Susan - what did RTA say?

Wow, I can see those visuals - I grew up at a Shaker RTA stop so I took it from earliest memory in its prime (when it was still Shaker Transit and had those airstream yellow cars that all rusted out. I see a big piece of the future of this region rooted at RTA stops - not the poorly developed stop locations and zones of the current configurations but a complete rework - I'll be workning on that and you will be blown away - then you'll really be able to come up with some sexy visuals!!!

Regarding PR for no car day...and your footprint

Jeff - you know how pissed I am about the lack of collaboration and true accountability in the enviro-space here in NEO so I won't get started, except to say I will be hunting everyone down to get their data (and we'll get a 2-year update from Beach) so everyone may as well go to realneo now and get it over with, so we can all get to work on improvement! Thanks for posting your footrpint... who'll step up next?

one reader of realneo at a time?

OK you got my attention, but I'm not talking about me. I'm talking about an ongoing influx of dollars and a public education campaign. How is the MSM addressing this in Cleveland? Have I really passed by the eye-catching billboards on Carnegie Avenue, missed the screaming PSA on radio or online on the front page of; walked the dog during the ongoing series on Lead Eradication in Cleveland on WVIZ?

Was it in one of those Believe in Cleveland ads? You know -- this one...

"20% of Cleveland's children are lead poisoned -- that could be why we have the lowest high school graduation rates in the nation.  Believe in Cleveland ~
Brought to you by Alex Machaskee and Bill Stern

What is Cleveland Clinic doing? Free treatment and testing? How about UH? What is Team NEO doing? Continuing to trumpet the large amounts of cash being invested in building development while sweeping this looming issue under the rug?

I see that a council of experts (clearly it is an august body) has gathered to address the issue. That’s great.

I don't mean to throw shade on RealNeo, but shouldn't it be front and center somewhere that the immediately affected can learn how to address it and front and center on the power broker's agenda? I followed your link and then spent two hours searching for web content on lead eradication in Cleveland.

Maybe you will post the links to the Pulitzer Prize winning article by Connie Schultz and the podcast of the City Club Forum on the issue, the budget for the advertising campaign, the press release that announces local hospital's pledge to help impoverished Cleveland families avoid lead exposure.

My search skills have failed me... Please post the MSM campaign links here.

Or maybe you missed the sentiment of my post.

If no mainstream media will take it on like coats for kids, then you know you need an investigative team, because there is some shady business goin down if Live on Five won’t cover it.

I'm glad you get it - it's worse than shady, it's evil

Keep reading REALNEO - I'm doing the investigative work and you'll be really disturbed... Michael Gill plans to kick it up for the Free Times - the mainstream is waiting for the official word litigation is coming to Ohio and then things will liven up. In the mean time, let's get together and I'll fill you in - next Friday is the next rally meeting - 12 at Lutheran Metro Ministries on E25th - you should also join the outreach and advocacy subcommittee.