In the Weeds Book Club

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Book Club

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Program Description

Event Details

In the Weeds Book Club is brought to you by Green Bicycle Co. in collaboration with Paradigm Coffee & Music, Sheboygan Active Transportation, and Mead Library.

This is a book club that is meant to get “into the weeds” on topics of interest to our community. We read thought-provoking books then meet each month for 4 months per book, to discuss the themes and examine how they might be applied to ideas and actions for the City of Sheboygan. The book is available to borrow from the library or purchase from Green Bicycle Co.

Our first book started in November of 2022 and based on enthusiastic requests for continued conversations, subsequent meetings have been scheduled through 2024. Organizations are also invited, when appropriate, to share how ideas and impact can be made through their organization. 

Confessions of a Recovering Engineer by Charles L. Marohn Jr.

Strong Towns founder and president Charles Marohn pulls back the curtain on the North American transportation system. Drawing on his decades of experience as a professional engineer and planner, he explains why the conventional approach to traffic engineering is making people less safe, bankrupting towns and cities, destroying the fabric of communities, and actually worsening the problems (like congestion) engineers set out to solve. He also talks about how transportation can be fixed—and why fixing it will involve not just engineers, but local residents and officials who have become effective and empowered advocates, connected with others to make real change.

  • January 11, 2024, 5:30pm - 7:30pm, The Loft
  • February 8, 2024, 5:30pm - 7:30pm, The Loft
  • March 14, 2024, 5:30pm - 7:30pm, The Loft
  • April 11, 2024, 5:30pm - 7:30pm, The Loft

Poverty, by America by Matthew Desmond

The United States, the richest country on earth, has more poverty than any other advanced democracy. Why? Why does this land of plenty allow one in every eight of its children to go without basic necessities, permit scores of its citizens to live and die on the streets, and authorize its corporations to pay poverty wages? In this landmark book, acclaimed sociologist Matthew Desmond draws on history, research, and original reporting to show how affluent Americans knowingly and unknowingly keep poor people poor. Those of us who are financially secure exploit the poor, driving down their wages while forcing them to overpay for housing and access to cash and credit. We prioritize the subsidization of our wealth over the alleviation of poverty, designing a welfare state that gives the most to those who need the least. And we stockpile opportunity in exclusive communities, creating zones of concentrated riches alongside those of concentrated despair. Some lives are made small so that others may grow. Desmond builds a startlingly original and ambitious case for ending poverty. He calls on us all to become poverty abolitionists, engaged in a politics of collective belonging to usher in a new age of shared prosperity and, at last, true freedom.

  • May 9, 2024, 5:30pm - 7:30pm, The Loft
  • June 13, 2024, 5:30pm - 7:30pm, The Loft
  • July 11, 2024, 5:30pm - 7:30pm, The Loft
  • August 8, 2024, 5:30pm - 7:30pm, The Loft

Arbitrary Lines: How Zoning Broke the American City and How to Fix It by M. Nolan Gray

With lively explanations and stories, Gray shows why zoning abolition is a necessary—if not sufficient—condition for building more affordable, vibrant, equitable, and sustainable cities. The arbitrary lines of zoning maps across the country have come to dictate where Americans may live and work, forcing cities into a pattern of growth that is segregated and sprawling. Gray lays the groundwork for this ambitious cause by clearing up common confusions and myths about how American cities regulate growth and examining the major contemporary critiques of zoning. Gray sets out some of the efforts currently underway to reform zoning and charts how land-use regulation might work in the post-zoning American city.

  • September 12, 2024, 5:30pm - 7:30pm, The Loft
  • October 10, 2024, 5:30pm - 7:30pm, The Loft
  • November 14, 2024, 5:30pm - 7:30pm, The Loft
  • December 12, 2024, 5:30pm - 7:30pm, The Loft

Organizers, Presenters, Facilitators, and Promoters

Heather Cleveland is a compassionate listener and visionary that quickly sees processes and systems and finds inspiration and challenge from different viewpoints and experiences.

Braden Schmidt is a Sheboygan resident, local organizer and 'young professional' who is passionate about empowering people to create the community they want to live in.

Kate Krause is a spacemaker and community connector. She tries to remedy things she's cranky about... ope, passionate about.


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