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See photos from our successful and exciting RootsCamp Pittsburgh. Click here.


What is RootsCamp?

RootsCamps are participant driven events or forums, using the "unconference" or "open space" format that is born from the desire for activists, organizers, leaders and politicians in the progressive sphere to share and learn in a productive, fast-paced, open environment.

Think of it as a cross between an election debrief and grassroots organizing skills share. The progressive community — everyone from the "netroots" to precinct captains to field organizers to national message consultants — come together to share successes, failures, impart old wisdom and new discoveries.


RootsCamp is an intense event with discussions, demos, and interaction from participants. There are NO SPECTATORS.

Initiated by the New Organizing Institute and based on the phenomenally successful BarCamp model, RootsCamps are self-organized with no pre-set agenda. This open format never fails to yield an astounding exchange of information, spin-off projects, and cross-pollination among unexpected partners.   RootsCamps have been successfully held in 8 cities in the US, with more being planned for the next in the next two months around the country.  See the proposed session topics or add your own by clicking here.



To get a taste of what RootsCamp is like, check out the video clips from the last year’s Rocky Mountain RootsCamp: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lZaM3CjVzPs


When is RootsCampPittsburgh?

RootsCamp will be held at the United Steelworkers Building, 5 Gateway Center in Pittsburgh on January 24, 2009. 


Who should come to RootsCamp?

RootsCamp will be for anyone who played a role in the 2008 elections and/or working in progressive politics. As fellow organizers, we'll be meeting each other, reuniting with team members, discussing the innovations and challenges from this cycle, and most importantly, celebrating!

RootsCamp 2008 will bring together the best and brightest organizers that were engaged in 2008 campaigns, including staff and volunteers from:

·         Presidential Campaigns

·         Down ballot races

·         Labor

·         Non-partisan GOTV and voter registration operations

·         Online organizations

·         Advocacy organizations

·         Tech support

·         Blogs and other media

·         Media, message, polling and targeting consultants


At RootsCamp, you will:

·         Share stories and knowledge with each other from all over Pennsylvania, especially the western part of the state.

·         Teach others from the progressive movement what you did and how you did it. Brainstorm ways that the methods you practiced can be exported to unions, advocacy organizations and community organizations.

·         Strategize about how to help progressive institutions to sustain what you've started.


What are the session topics?Can't find what you're looking for? Add your own ideas!

RootsCamp costs $10.00.  This includes beverages and a light lunch.

Who is Coming. View the attendees list here.



8:00-9:00             Registration, mingling, light breakfast

9:00                     Opening Session

9:30-10:15           Session 1

10:30-11:15         Session 2

11:30-12:15         Session 3

12:30-1:30           Lunch

1:45-2:30             Session 4

2:45-3:30             Session 5

3:45-4:30             Session 6

4:30-5:00             Closing Session

The Rules of Rootscamp

*  1st Rule: You do talk about RootsCamp.

*  2nd Rule: You do blog about RootsCamp.

*  3rd Rule: No pre-scheduled presentations.

*  4th Rule: Learners are experts, and experts are learners.

*  5th Rule: To present a topic, write it in an open discussion slot.

*  6th Rule: Have as many discussions as the room allows.

*  7th Rule: Discussions go on as long as they're exciting.

*  8th Rule: Show support with your comments.

*  9th Rule: Show disinterest with your feet.

*  10th Rule: No tourists


Not from Western PA?  Here are the other RootsCamps we know of:

Philadelphia, January 31, 2009 http://rootscampphilly2009.pbwiki.com/FrontPage

Denver, CO, January 31, 2009 http://www.progressnowaction.org/RootsCamp0

Ohio, February 7-9, 2009 http://progressohio.org/page/s/rootscamp2009


Volunteer to help at RootsCamp 

RootsCamp is a collaborative effort.  We need your help everyone's help to make it work. Sign up here.


Can you or your organization contribute resources to RootsCamp?

Contact Keystone Progress: info@keystoneprogress.org

You can contribute money or materials.


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