Fledge Freedom Fest creates conversation around ideas of freedom in America

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EAST LANSING, Michigan – While many spent the holiday weekend celebrating America’s independence, some people in Lansing came together to question that freedom at the Fledge Freedom Fest.

“Fledge Freedom Fest was a re-examination of what freedom is in America and what we want it to be,” said co-host Katy Kelly.

Aaron Jefferis, 2021

The Saturday, Sunday and Monday event featured live performances, food vendors, and plenty of community organizations like Recovery Mobile Clinic, which offers harm reduction tools, medication, and more.

The event also hosted CATA, which offers second chance employment opportunities, and Nation Outside, a Michigan organization that helps formerly incarcerated people return to life outside of prison.

“We have this notion that time heals everything, and that is flawed logic,” said Ashley Goldon, program director for Nation Outside. “The point is, time does not heal anything without action, and this is the type of action that we hope will transform communities and enable people to meet their needs.”

The Steering Wheel, Lansing

FOX 47 News, 2021

Each vendor was chosen to help create opportunities for attendees, and also to help the event’s mission to create a conversation around July 4th, and what that means for the people of Lansing.

With no US flags or cans of beer in sight at this Freedom Fest, organizers have abandoned the status quo in search of something they believe is more uplifting.

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