Adventures in Cardboard is based out of the Flair Fountain building located at the intersection of Hiawatha and 45th street. We are walking distance from the light rail as well along several bike paths. The building is home to our administrative offices (otherwise known as the goblin caves) and our studio space.
4501 Hiawatha was originally built to serve as a fire station in 1907; it was known as the Minnehaha Fire Station #24. The exterior of the building remains true to its first appearance with the addition of a few modern features, such as the glass doors that now mark the entrance. The interior still retains some of the original fire house features as well, with a visible space on the first floor ceiling from where the fire pole was located and with the firemen's lockers still intact on the second floor. Minnehaha Fire Station #24 is noted for being the first all Black fire station in Minneapolis. John Cheatham was one of the first African American firefighters in Minneapolis and led the Minnehaha station along with Lafayette Mason and Frank Harris, two other African American firefighters, until his death in 1918. The appointment of Cheatham, Mason, and Harris was met with some resistance from community members who insisted that the men be replaced by white firefighters. All three firefighters found a pillar of strength in a group of some 60 women who circulated a petition in support of their placement.
The building was converted to private ownership and industrial use sometime in the 1950s. Adventures in Cardboard took up residency shortly before the summer of 2019 and has used the space since as a base for fantasy and play workshops, residencies with schools and other institutions, as a venue to host birthdays and special events, and as the epicenter of our summer programming.