Intro: Sharing Challenge Series!

RocShare recently began a Meetup group, which meets once a month to discuss Rochester's sharing economy and how you can become more involved in it! You can find out more about these by checking out the Calendar section of our Events tab, or by following us on Social Media.

This is a casual opportunity to meet others who are interested or involved in Rochester's sharing economy, and to explore ways that we can encourage each other and our sharing city to flourish.

This month featured our second annual MAP JAM, where we joined many other cities worldwide in #MapJam 2014, which was put on by the Sharing Cities Network. This month also kickstarted our Sharing Challenge Series. At RocShare, we have been planning the start of this series for months and are excited that it is finally here!

This month's challenge is ridesharing!

Feel free to join us, and let us know in the comments how you participated, and how your sharing experience impacted your communities.

ShareFest Day 1 Events!

The ShareFest is coming up fast! Here are some of the participants and events that are part of ShareFest Day 1 on Friday May 2nd :

Rochester Public Library - Lyell Branch and the Little Flower Community, at 956 Lyell Avenue Rochester, NY 14606

Cooperative Living in the City presented by the Little Flower Community @ 2-2:45 pm
The Little Flower Community is a cooperative-style home(x2) occupied by a small group of super awesome cool people with a shared interest in community, social issues, sustainability, cooperative living, potlucks, and the like. The LFC was founded in April of 2010 and is located in the Beechwood neighborhood of Rochester, NY. Come and hear what they have to share and see if cooperative living could work for you. @ 2-2:45pm

Couponing 101 with Jennifer Roth @ 4-5:30 pm 
Couponing tips and ideas on how to use coupons to get the best deal.

Rochester Public Library - Charlotte Branch at 3557 Lake Avenue Rochester, NY 14612

Learn to make home-made music on the Appalachian dulcimer – Friday, May 2nd @ 1:00 pm, 
The Appalachian dulcimer has been used to play down-home music for more than 200 years. It is perhaps the easiest stringed instrument to learn, and most people can begin to play simple folksongs after a single lesson! Come to the Charlotte Branch library and learn to make some beautiful music on this charming folk instrument. Practice dulcimers will be provided, and no musical knowledge of any kind is required. Ages 10 through adult. Call 428-8217 to register.

The Phillis Wheatley Community Library at 33 Dr Samuel McCree Way, Rochester, NY 14608

We will be sharing seeds and/ or exchanging seeds in anticipation of the raised bed gardens that we will be building on the library grounds this spring.

Rochester Public Library - Lincoln Branch at 851 Joseph Avenue Rochester, NY 14621

Free events for the day include:

Bike repair for adults @ 3 pm
Bring your bike into lincoln and learn how to get it in top shape free! Tips and advice provided by r community bikes.

Bike repair for kids/teens @ 4 pm
Bring your bike in to get it tuned-up for the summer! Free workshop on bike repair kids and teens ages 5-18.

Sewing machine clinic 12 – 4 pm
Do you have an old sewing machine you can’t get working? Bring it into lincoln and get it working. Those with cast iron or all metal machines are encouraged to attend.
Lincoln branch library - 851 joseph avenue - (585) 428-82

Ecohouse at 69 Genesee Park Blvd Rochester NY 14611

Hi! We're EcoHouse! We're a student cooperative located in the 19th Ward. We compost, share vegan cooking, and try to make our world a better place. We'll be hosting a potluck at 6 pm - please join us for a night of food, cards, and talking about the sharing economy.

Arnett Branch Library at 310 Arnett Boulevard Rochester, NY 14619

Sharing Some Seeds, 11am-5pm. As part of ShareFest 2014, a librarian will be randomly giving out packets of seeds (while supplies last) to visitors of the Arnett Branch Library!  

Rochester Brainery at 274 Goodman St N, Rochester, NY 14607

"ShareFest Event” beginning at 5:00. Meet the artist Steve Duprey, share in the discussion and create a piece of art with him."

Rochester Burners at 76 Magee Ave., Rochester, NY 14613


AKA: Take My Stuff So I Don’t Have to Throw it Out!

We all have stuff we don’t use, don’t need, and don’t want anymore. Here’s your chance to find a new home for it!

When: Friday, May 2, 2013
7:00-9:00 pm

Where: 76 Magee Ave., Rochester, NY 14613

What:  A “stuff swap” or donation drop off as part of the Rochester Share Fest

As part of Rochester Share Fest, we will be hosting a Drop It or Swap It night on Friday, May 2. We’re collecting items that we will then bring to the Share Fest at Washington Square Park on Saturday, where we will be running Trader Jane’s – a “take one, leave one” tent where we will be facilitating recycling and reuse of all the stuff from the Friday night swap. We are also collecting backpacks and items to fill the backpacks for Rochester’s homeless population. 

Take a look in your cupboards, closets, attic, and basement. Find things that you no longer use. You loved them once – let somebody else love them, too! Bring them to us to donate or swap.

Rochester Greenovation at 1199 E Main St Rochester, NY 14609

Greenovation will be having a swap from 12-5!

How to Participate in Sharefest '14: Day 3

How to Participate in Sharefest 2014: Day 3

ShareFest 2014 concludes with the ShareFest Conference, which takes place on May 4th in the Rundel Auditorium of the Central Library of Rochester & Monroe County at 115 South Ave. It is a chance to meet the Rochesterians who are involved in the sharing economy, and working to help people spend less, create more, and share what they have! In true sharing economy style, the conference is a potluck, so bring something tasty! After eating, we will break into group discussions on a variety of sharing economy topics! Here is the plan:

  • 1:30-1:45, Greetings, explanation of the plan. 
  • 1:45-2:00, Get all the food and name tags set up.
  • 2:00-3:00, Lunchtime! Eat, Talk, Share!
  • 3:00-3:45, Group Discussions.
  • 3:45-4:00, Say Goodbye!

You can register for the conference here. We would love to see you there! If you want to know more about ShareFest, click here. And if you want to be involved with Days 1 and 2, fill out the survey here!

How to Participate in ShareFest '14: Day 2

How to Participate in Sharefest 2014: Day 2 

Day two of the ShareFest is the ShareFestival, an outdoor festival held from 1:00-7:00 on May 3rd at Washington Square Park, where you can learn about Rochester's sharing economy and meet the people and organizations involved! 

There are five different groups that will be participating in day two:

  • Attendees. We will be happy to see you there! If you really want to get into the sharing spirit, bring some gifts that you can give or barter with other people! Your gift can be anything from index cards with your favorite recipes, to cherry tomatoes you grew, to your ukulele playing, to hugs or high fives! Just keep it small enough to carry around, and be creative! If you just bring the gift of showing up, that's okay too! 
  • Volunteers. This is you if you are helping out! If you are volunteering, please fill out this form!
  • Sharing Organizations/Organizers. If your organization helps people to spend less, create more, or share what they have, then we would love for you to be a part of the ShareFest! As one of our sharing organizations, you can participate by providing information and/or activities.
  • Upcyclers. Rochester has a strong community of artisans working in materials that would otherwise go to waste. This is you if you are selling upcycled goods and also providing information and/or activities. We want to showcase your work!
  • Cooperatively Owned Business. People in Rochester are banding together to start their own businesses cooperatively. We would love for you to participate at the ShareFestival by selling something, and providing information and/or activities.

If you are participating as a Sharing Organization/Organizer, an Upcycler, or a Cooperatively Owned Business, please complete this survey before April 26th!

You will be assigned a place at the ShareFestival and sorted based on which one of these categories you fit in. If you are able to, you can bring a table. Also remember to bring a sign to show who you are and any pamphlets, information, or activity materials that you will be using.

To help you brainstorm, here are some examples of activities that you can do!

Clean Sweep 2014 is happening the morning of the ShareFestival from 8:30am-12:30pm if you would like to join us! We will make sure to leave our park better than we found it!

How to Participate in ShareFest '14: Day 1

How to Participate in Sharefest 2014: Day 1

We have had a lot of people asking about how they can participate in Sharefest; especially Day 1, the day of independently organized events. So here is a little guide we put together with links and ideas to help you!

We focus here on the two easiest kinds of events, potlucks and swaps, but if you want to share, remember there are lots of ways!

Also, you don’t have to organize your own event, you can just go to someone else’s! Some people are leaders who push toward new things, and others are supporters who join in and make those things a success. You can’t have one without the other!


The first step, the easiest step, is almost always a potluck. Familiar and widely understood, the potluck is about as far as most people have ventured into the sharing economy. Luckily, it’s a great entry point! Just invite a few friends to bring food to pass and see how much better a meal is when it is shared. If you are more ambitious, you can use the potluck to discuss how to foster sharing in your communityAnother variation of a potluck is a Stranger Dinner, which is a great way to meet new people.


More involved and with more possibilities than a potluck is a swap. And you can swap ANYTHING. You can swap food, extending on the idea of a potluck. Those with children can swap home-cooked meals and babyfood to save valuable parenting time. You can swap clothesswap media, or swap toysYou can swap everything

Other sharing events:

If you fit into any of these categories: arty, crafty, or green, you may want to try throwing an upcycling event! Or maybe you are more of the techie/maker type and you want to try a repair cafe! Or you are musical and you want to have a jam session? If you are concerned with social justice, you may want to create a Street Store! Or if you just want to share any way you can, you can create a Gift Circle!

For Business Owners

If you are selling something, you can participate in Sharefest by trying out some alternative methods of exchange. You can try accepting bartered goods or services for your products. Or, if you are stuck on money, you can try using a pay-what-you-want system like some cafes have taken to doing. Or you can use the simple and financially safe sharing system of “suspending” goods as in Suspended Coffee!

The goal is to find what you have to share and to share it. We promise if you do, you will have a great experience.

And when you know what you want to do, tell us about it using this surveyWe can be reached on FacebookTwitter, on Tumblr, or by email!

Sharefest Rochester 2014

We were invited by an organization called Shareable to host an event called ShareFest in Rochester. The idea of a ShareFest is to introduce people to the sharing economy resources around them, and to introduce people, organizations, and nonprofits involved in the sharing economy to each other.
(more about that here

We would love for the ShareFest to be a three day event.

Day one would be decentralized, with bike tours of community gardens or little free libraries, organizations having open houses, and potlucks and swaps all over the city.

Day two would be a forward-facing event, a street festival where organizations could have tables, and where there would be activities and maybe public talks.

Day three would be a small conference with the movers and shakers of the local sharing economy, with roundtable discussions and networking.

We want this event to take place in mid-May, but we can't make this event happen on our own. We need your help! You can tell us about your interest at this link:

And follow us on your social media of choice to find out where the interest/planning meetings are!

Rochester Swap Groups

Facebook, if you use it right, is more then just a time sink. Rochester has almost 30 facebook groups focused on swapping goods, and the two largest have thousands of members! 

The first, Rochester Area Mom Swap, has over four thousand members. They require you to fill out a simple form to join the group, but once you do you get access to four thousand moms worth of childcare products and expertise.

The second, Rochester Pass It On is even bigger, with over five thousand members. To join the group, you just need to have a friend who is already a member. This keeps the growth to a reasonable pace. In RPIO you can give or request just about anything for free!

What do you think? Know any other popular online sharing groups in Rochester, facebook or otherwise? Let us know in the comments!