Cary Umhau And Her Group Spacious Bring A Play Revolution To Washington D.C.

04/20/2012 07:35 pm ET

One woman is challenging residents of the nation's capital to play out of the box as she brings cheeky adventure and messy food fights to the 'hallowed' streets of Washington D.C., the Washington Post reports.

As a freelance writer and blogger living in D.C., Cary Umhau has known first-hand what it feels like to be limited by city life and its constraints.

"I long wondered if I'd ever escape the little box I'd crawled into to make sense of life and to protect myself from challenges to a narrowly constructed worldview," she said on her website, adding that she often felt like she was living in a "straitjacket".

There was, she believed, something "more" to life that she and her community were missing.

While maintaining a blog and writing essays on topics like spirituality and friendship, Umhau began thinking about how she could bring life to those around her. She knew was that she wanted to create a space for people to "flourish and to have fun".

And so, the 51-year-old grandmother -- who, by her own admission, loves Dr. Seuss, banana pudding and road trips -- plotted and planned for 12 years around an idea that had begun to take shape in her mind.

Finally, in October of last year, Umhau partnered with 23-year-old Joey Katona to launch Spacious -- an organization that is dedicated to starting a "playful revolution to help people bust out of straitjackets, cubicles and little boxes we all find ourselves in from time to time", The Pink Line Project reports.

"This city is so obsessed with business and politics -- you have to work 50 hours a week and then go to all the right happy hours —- that we don’t prioritize recess and fun," Katona told the Washington Post.

With pie-throwing events, potluck story dinners and plans to organize line-dancing flash mobs in downtown D.C., Spacious is all about encouraging recess.

But more than just fun and games, the organization is also dedicated to engaging the community, celebrating people and improving lives.

For instance, earlier this month, Spacious organized a community cooking session and dinner with Eritrean refugees. Every Tuesday, Umhau and Spacious volunteers serve dinner at Central Union Mission, a men's shelter.

"We're planning for a spacious future," wrote Umhau on the organization's website. "We [are building] a movement of people who don't want to live with limits any longer."

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