by William Bruchert
This past weekend, hundreds — many, many more hundreds than expected — descended on The Slammer, outspoken atheist Penn Jillette's previous home, to help raise money and awareness for the project to transform it into "The Nevatican," intended to be a secular community center headed up by the United Church of Bacon. If successful, it will be free to use for events run by all the various secular organizations in Las Vegas (our own HALV, Sunday Assembly Las Vegas, and other LVCoR-related groups).
Word spread like wildfire across social media (Facebook, Meetup.com, Twitter, Instagram) as the event approached. An expected 200-300 attendees grew to over 1,100 RSVPs, and more than that estimated to have actually attended.
Dozens of volunteers helped organize and produce the event in only a matter of days; a great example of what humans can accomplish when working together towards a goal. Setup (seating, signage, etc.), execution (parking, attendee sign-ins, donation collection, food service, childcare), and even clean-up seemed to go exceptionally quickly and without a hitch.
The "Save The Slammer" project still has a long way to go, however, and more events are in the works to continue the fund-raising endeavor. Those events should go even more smoothly, as some setup will already be done from this first event (e.g. signage, grading of the parking areas, etc.), along with things learned that can be done better next time.
For more information and to donate to the cause, see the Indiegogo page: http://igg.me/at/nevatican/x
- KTNV - Church of Bacon hosts free barbecue
- Las Vegas Weekly - A Barbecue at Penn Jillette’s Slammer
- Las Vegas Sun - Penn Jillette’s atheist fundraiser: Bacon, skepticism and Trump on the side
- LVRJ - Jillette's home is now United Church of Bacon headquarters — VIDEO