Time To Rise

an Update from HOBT

October 7, 2020

Rooted in resource features - puppet updates (2)

Building a New Path Forward

Due to a significant and unexpected loss in funding, in addition to the impacts of COVID-19, beginning October 12th all HOBT staff will be furloughed for three months.

The Board of Directors will use that time to work towards a sustainable foundation for the Seed of MayDay to grow and call on the community for long term support. This decision was not made lightly — and comes at great cost to our staff. 

HOBT has known many cycles of organizational crisis. This time, our response and approach will not be reactive, or urgent. 

This current moment is not in a vacuum, but reflects 45 years of organizational patterns including:

  • limited grant funding for the MayDay Celebration
  • lack of investment in Financial Management and Development Staff support
  • a lack of financial transparency with the community. 

We see this furlough period as an opportunity to

  • truly break down organizational patterns.
  • rebuild new systems that authentically live out our values.
  • become a key maker, rather than a gatekeeper, for the artist community in South Minneapolis and beyond.

HOBT is at a midway point of tremendous organization change as we’ve worked to: transform our business model, complete a leadership transition, and implement programming shifts, in an already challenging landscape of COVID-19 and its many economic impacts.

Ways to Support

We know this: our work is not yet done, we’re not ready to give up. It’s time to rise. We hope you, our community, will join us as collaborators and thinking partners as we navigate this next chapter of HOBT’s transformation and work to create a strong foundation for the future of the MayDay Celebration.


Here are a few ways to support: 

Questions? Click here

What We’ve Accomplished

Despite this time of great challenge we are proud of all we have accomplished this year:

  • HOBT established a MayDay Council  
  • HOBT produced a Virtual MayDay Celebration 
  • HOBT implemented and released a Cultural Appropriation Policy 
  • The MayDay Council created a Values & Affirmations framework to help guide the work of HOBT.
  • HOBT transitioned it’s business model to “all about MayDay” with the image of MayDay as a seed and created an internal programs screen to support this new business model
  • HOBT Board of Directors, HOBT staff, and the MayDay Council collaborated on a budget process and financial management and decision making process that resulted in a 2021 Budget that includes a ‘fund MayDay first’ approach.

Moving Forward

The Board of Directors will be sharing regularly with the community — expect an update monthly on social media and in our newsletter, Puppet Updates. Each month we’ll ask for community input with a guiding question we are holding. 

Though we would not have chosen this challenge, after a year in Chrysalis, HOBT is answering the call to go deeper into the cocoon. Our transformative work is not done, and in order to create a truly equitable and sustainable future for HOBT and the MayDay Celebration, the HOBT Board promises to steward this furlough period with utmost care, compassion, and courage.