How to Make a Fun Palace in 4 weeks (or less!)

You’ve decided to make a Fun Palace. You have FOUR WEEKS to do it – here’s how:

1. Find someone/someone to do it with you
Fun Palaces are made by individuals, groups of two or ten or one hundred. It really doesn’t matter. Ask mates, family, colleagues if they have a ‘secret skill’ they can share at a Fun Palace. Calligraphy student? Guitarist? Enthusiastic kayaker? Cake decorating medallist? Whatever level of expertise, as long as they can share it with someone else, that’s great. By share, we mean anything from a twenty-minute workshop, to a five-minute demo. If it’s something someone else can DO (not just watch), it’s ideal.  Here’s a great blog from Lancaster Fun Palaces which includes a list of some fine Fun Palaces activities.

2. Find a location
Fun Palaces happen in libraries, shops, schools, churches, parks, swimming pools, gyms, scout halls, fields, forests … and private homes. Check out the map.
To make a Fun Palace in a public location, ask whoever is in charge if they’d like a community-led event made by and for local people. Show them our short film and this brilliant brief evaluation about what Fun Palaces achieve.
It’s also fine to make a Fun Palace in your front garden, in the paved bit between the blocks in your estate, or any other place that is open to the public.

3. Sign up
This gets you on our map and means we know you’re joining in. If we don’t know you’re making a Fun Palace, we can’t help.

4. Share it
We’ll send you posters to advertise your Fun Palace, helping you spread the word locally and nationally. We also have loads of info in the toolkit, along with the design for a cheap outdoor banner and a template risk assessment! Here’s our Publicity Toolkit – see p2 for a template press release and template letter to your MP or councillor to invite them along. Social media is your friend! We’re on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and happy to help.

5. Do it
Things will go wrong, people will fail to turn up, it will be messy and probably noisy. All good. The point of Fun Palaces is to create together, to have chats over a cup of tea, to understand our neighbours a bit better. If 1000 people take part and create a phenomenal local social movement – great. If no one comes but you and the neighbours you made the Fun Palace with get to know each other – great. You’ve heard other people say the journey is what matters, not the destination. We mean it.

If you have TWO WEEKS …
1. Ask a friend or family member to do it with you. What’s your secret skill? What is your friend’s? Do you know one other person who could contribute a skill? Great. Programme sorted.
2. Find a location – as above
3. Sign up – as above
4. Share it – as above
5. Do it – even more so!

ONE WEEK? Go for it!
As above OR join one already happening – check our map, find your closest Fun Palace, use the contact details on their Fun Palaces page to offer help. Tell them we sent you. Or let us know and we’ll introduce you.

On Fun Palaces weekend? We love your enthusiasm!
Pick up your knitting (and some spare wool & needles), your painting (and some spare paints), your astrophysics PhD (and some spare space) and take it along to your local Fun Palace, tell them you’ve come to contribute – and make sure they know you want to join in next year!