Mount Olive Lutheran’s Idea Potluck

posted by Tori Liggett

At Jackson Galloway Associates, planing future phases of construction on a given site involves hands-on collaboration with our clients to arrive at a shared vision. Your genius ideas always help us create functional spaces that are more beautiful, authentic, timeless and technology superior.

“Project stakeholders contribute their fresh, long stewed-over, and even half-baked ideas to share in a lively and hands-on collaborative brainstorming session.”

When designing a building for a church we understand the space may be used for multiple activities by different users with various needs. This makes it essential to collaborate on facility and site design with all the various stakeholders.

In February we had the pleasure of meeting for breakfast one Saturday at Mt. Olive Lutheran Church for an ‘Idea Potluck’. At an Idea Potluck, interested parties bring food-for-thought instead of casseroles. Project stakeholders contribute their fresh, long stewed-over, and even half-baked ideas to share in a lively and hands-on collaborative brainstorming session. The event was well attended with 60+ members of the congregation. John Jackson and James Lindsay went from our office to facilitate the creative workshop and chat with the congregation about their desires for the church facilities.

How it works:

The participants were divided into six groups, given a site map, and challenged to collaborate with their group to create their “dream” church site. Members had a great time crafting: cutting and gluing pipe cleaners, paper and even fruit loops to the site map.  Each group then presented its master plan to the participants and the architects for discussion.

Many of the ideas that first surface in an Idea Potluck will later be incorporated by the design team and building committee into the church’s facilities design.

“A dominant theme quickly surfaced with these six groups of ten people as they worked diligently together. Most everyone wanted to reach the community with new facility improvements, but also these improvements were to be useful to the church. The present facilities occupy only a few of the twenty-five acres that are owned. The church sees themselves as stewards of God’s resources, so several potential site improvements surfaced such as an amphitheater, a disc golf course, and running trails, which create a well-rounded utilization. The predominant facility improvement surfacing at the workshop was a two-story multi-purpose recreation building that could also house a growing preschool as well as Sunday school for the little ones. This answers a big need for both community and the church.”
– John Jackson

Is an Idea Potluck right for my project?

Jackson Galloway’s Idea Potlucks are beneficial for mid-sized groups to voice their thoughts and values to the design team. During an Idea Potluck, JGA strives to build unity from a diversity of ideas and instill member ownership of the solution in the process. Facilitating positive communication builds consensus and strengthens the relationships of all team members involved.

If your organization needs to bring stakeholders together to workshop a design opportunity, we would be happy to help you determine if an Idea Potluck is right for your group.