Rootscamp Is Back, January 12, Columbus

I can proudly say I have been to every single Rootscamp since the event launched in ... was it 2006? 2007? Whenever.

This is a FREE event that all Ohio progressives should think about attending — and this year, they made it easier for us not-morning people. The one drawback for me has always been getting up before sunrise to begin the long, dreary, cold drive from Cleveland to Columbus.

This year, registration starts at 12:15 p.m. and the first session is at 1. It runs until 7 p.m. and dinner will be served instead of lunch. It happens on Saturday, January 12, at the same place it's been for the last three years: the Ohio Civil Service Employees Union office at 390 Worthington Rd, Westerville, just off I-71 north of Columbus. It's easy to get to and the space has proved ideal for the event.

Rootscamp attracts progressives of all stripes from aspiring and former candidates to elected officials, from teachers to union leaders, from food bank volunteers to Planned Parenthood organizers to peace activists. It's an opportunity to get outside your bubble and meet people from other parts of the state, to learn what issues engage people in their areas and what challenges they face.

The actual content of Rootscamp is determined by the attendees. A large board is placed in the lobby with a grid featuring the time slots and rooms available. Anyone can place their panel, forum or roundtable in one of those slots. Attendees can participate in anything they find there for as long as it engages them. Last year, I attended many exceptional discussions, including one led by education blogger Greg Mild and attended by many teachers who aired their issues and ideas, and one on women's rights led by a 19-year-old male OSU student. I've hosted a few discussions myself.

It's a great opportunity to meet new people, share energy and ideas, and hopefully create some momentum to help us purge Republicans from statewide office in 2014.

Here's where to go to sign up:

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