The Santa Cruz Community Calendar

Santa Cruz County, California

Bruce Van Allen
March, 2021

Dear Friends,

I hope you find the Community Calendar useful!

Our community has so much to offer — and so many talented, caring, and active groups and individuals pursuing their dreams and enriching all of our lives!

The goal of the Calendar is simply to promote activities that connect us together.

To support this resource, I encourage you to explore its listings and participate in what our community has to offer! If you are able and so inclined, please consider sending a donation to keep it going!

A Confession

The Calendar has been operating since 2016, but I'll be the first to say that in recent years it hasn't met its potential.

For much of the time after its initial development, I have had only limited time for maintaining and improving how it works. That was partially because it's designed to mostly run on its own, with my attention needed only occasionally for tech support and bug fixes. So I could move on to my other projects developing software and data analysis for nonprofits, and providing technical and management services for political campaigns.

But unfortunately, in recent years I have neglected a very important part: adding access to more groups to post their events and activities.

And, in the constant churn of online offerings, the whole thing has felt increasingly dated, especially in relation to social media and, since the pandemic, the shift of so many in-person community activities to online participation.

Now: Community Calendar 2.0

Our community continues to bubble with activity, even if the forms and venues have changed. So I decided in January to devote some serious time to upgrading the Calendar's capabilities, to make it easier for groups to list all kinds of activities, and to expand its usefulness for our community.

I am pleased to announce a substantially improved Community Calendar.

Most of the changes are behind the scenes. The internal workings use more modern web technologies based on world-class Open Source software, and I've built in more capacity to expand the services the Calendar can provide going forward.

More importantly for you as someone looking for cool activities, the new Calendar offers:

  • All devices: the whole Calendar as well as individual listings look good on any screen size
  • Details: better display of event details such as sponsor info, whether and how to RSVP, physical and online accessibility
  • Get Involved: a Directory of member organizations, with their missions, types of activities, contacts, and opportunities for you to get involved
  • More Groups: As the new Calendar rolls out, we are recruiting more groups to list their activities
  • Continuity and Connection: easily see and move between scheduled events such as classes, radio shows, public meetings

For you as an organizer:

  • Fast posting, so a simple What-When-Where listing can be added to the Calendar with minimal steps
  • Easy addition of details, such as RSVP contacts, long video-conference links, sponsor info, and accessibility provisions
  • Promotion: expanded ability to send out notices of your event directly from the Calendar to social media and email lists
  • Flexibility, to handle differing types of listings
  • Series: improved multi-date listings, such as regular meetings, classes, serial performances, and similar scheduled activities
  • Documents: add downloadable flyers, reading materials, meeting agendas

Your Donation

All of this is provided at no cost to the public or to the activity organizers. I'd like to keep it that way. Up to this time, all of my development and maintenance work has been donated. But, as for many of us, the pandemic year has been rough for me financially. So for the first time, I've added this Donate page.

Please consider making a one-time or monthly donation to help me keep this moving. I'll be grateful for whatever you can contribute!

Bruce Van Allen
Developer, Santa Cruz Community Calendar