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Humanists of Colorado Message Board › COCORE Billboard project

COCORE Billboard project

Tim B.
Denver, CO
Post #: 78
From Marvin Straus / COCORE.­

This is an update of the billboard project and a request for donations.

Thank you to the Boulder Atheists who have donated $100 dollars and adopted the billboard project.

Thank you to Elizabeth Kingery for her donation of $20.

In the past, there had been suggestions from COCORE members that only one billboard would not give enough coverage to the entire state and they suggested bus advertising. However, CBS Outdoor has made an offer too good to turn down. Instead of one large (14 X 48) billboard, they have offered 11 small (10 X 30) billboards for 4 weeks. Originally, that included one in Fort Collins and one in Colorado Springs. Next Media which has all of the billboard and bus advertising in the Fort Collins area refused to carry the message (which a lawyer told me is their right.) The offer from CBS Outdoor is 1 billboard in Colorado Springs and ten in the Denver area, spread out as much as they can. I signed a contract yesterday for that deal. The launch date is November 17th or later. Prior to that date, I will be issuing a press report to the media about the project.

The major goal of the project is to bring new members to COCORE organizations by encouraging viewers to go to and then to the links to the individual groups. I suggest that groups should confirm the link on the website is the one you want prospective members to use.

Now for the solicitation part. I am writing today to encourage you to help by donating to this ambitious project, which will cost $5,000. To donate by PayPal, go to the Boulder Atheists website, and click on PayPal donations, note on the comment line that your donation is for the billboard project. If you want to use snail-mail, Billboard Project c/o Marvin Straus, 2228 Holyoke Dr., Boulder 80305.


"Together, we can"
Tim B.
Denver, CO
Post #: 84

Press Release
For immediate release.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008.
Contact: Marvin Straus, 303-494-4926, .

The billboard shown above began appearing at different locations across the United States in 2008. With the exception of the contact information at the bottom, all billboards have been identical to the one shown above.

The first one, produced by FreeThoughtAction appeared January 14th alongside the New Jersey Turnpike.

The second billboard appeared in Philadelphia on May 1st, 2008, sponsored by a coalition of several organizations.

The third billboard, sponsored by Margaret Downey, past president of the Atheist Alliance International, appeared in Los Angeles alongside the Santa Anna Freeway.

The fourth billboard, sponsored by Kansas City FreeThinkers, appeared in Kansas City on September 3rd, 2008.

So far, the groups report that the response has been overwhelmingly positive. One comment: "Bravo, billboards like these help non-theists feel less alone and less alienated."

And now, The Colorado Coalition of Reason (COCORE) will sponsor 11 billboards, one in Colorado Springs, and ten in the Denver metropolitan area. We had also planned to have two of the eleven in Fort Collins and Greeley, but that area's major media company, Next Media, refused to carry the message.

Jan Meshon, president of FreeThoughtAction provided the artwork for COCORE's billboard.

Brett Kelly of CBS Outdoor will announce the exact location of the Colorado billboards, which will run for 4 weeks, on November 17th.

COCORE is an umbrella group consisting of 11 secular groups in Colorado. The project was sponsored by The Boulder Atheists and spearheaded by board member, Marvin Straus.

Straus says, "Our primary goals are to let other freethinkers know they are not alone and to provide them with contact information for secular groups in their area. These billboards across the nation complement the recent best-selling atheist books, billboards by the Freedom From Religion Foundation, the secular bus advertising in England, and the increasing percentage of non-religious citizens in our country. In a small way, they counter religious advertising that divides this nation between Christians and non-Christians. It is appropriate that COCORE's billboards appear in November and December, when the wall that separates church and state is attacked in the name of Christmas."

COCORE member groups:
Atheists and Freethinkers of Denver
Boulder Atheists
Boulder Heretics
Denver Atheists
Denver Atheists and Freethinkers
Freethinkers of Colorado Springs
Freethinkers of Northern Colorado
Humanist Action League
Humanists of Colorado
Metro State Atheists
Student Secular Alliance (of UC Boulder)
Jeanette M. N.
Denver, CO
Post #: 847
The article below appeared in the Rocky Mountain News, in print today. They got Marvin Straus's name wrong, so I noted that. And I think it starts and ends with a negative "War on Christmas" slant to it. Lanny is the one who drew my attention to the article.

Billboard: "Don't believe in God? - You are not alone."
By John C. Ensslin, Rocky Mountain News
Published November 11, 2008 at 6:49 p.m.

Here's an unusual sign that the holidays are coming: just in time for Christmas, a group of atheists and freethinkers plan to sponsor 11 billboards in Colorado.

Against a blue sky backdrop, their billboard poses the question: "Don't believe in God? - You are not alone."

COCORE, an umbrella organization of 11 groups ranging from the Boulder Heretics to the Humanists of Colorado, are spending $5,000 to post their message at 10 sites in Denver and one in Colorado Springs, for four weeks starting around Nov. 17.

The group wanted to put up signs in Fort Collins and Greeley, but a billboard company refused to carry the message.

While similar billboards have gone up in places like Los Angeles, Philadelphia and Kansas City, they are a first in Colorado, said Marvin Straub [sic], a spokesman for COCORE.

Straub [sic] said the one sign in Colorado Springs was not meant to tweak religious groups in that area.

"Absolutely not," Straub [sic] said Tuesday, noting that there is a freethinkers chapter in Colorado Springs.

He said the primary goal of the campaign is to reach about eight to 14 percent of the population who tell pollsters that they are not religious.

A spokesman for Focus on the Family Institute in Colorado Springs said his organization has no problem with another group exercising its free speech rights.

"We're thankful we live in a country where we have that freedom," said Del Packet, president of the Focus on the Family Institute.

But Packet added there has been a rise in hostility in recent years toward religious groups. He said Focus on the Family will also exercise its free speech rights to address public issues as well.

The Colorado billboard campaign comes at the time when the American Humanist Association has launched a bus and newspaper ad campaign in New York City and Washington, D.C., that asks, "Why believe in god? Just be good for goodness sake?"

The campaign drew criticism from Catholic League President Bill Donohue, who stated, "It is a shame that an organization that worships nothing would be forced to crib its 'Holiday Campaign' ad from a Christmas song about St. Nick."
Greg R.
Denver, CO
Post #: 201
This was the lead story on channel 2 news last night. Here's the direct link to the story with video:­

There is also a comment section. Right now it has a few good comments and several idiotic ones. Maybe we can change that.
Tim B.
Denver, CO
Post #: 91
From Marvin Straus:


Good morning all,

I wanted to give a quick report on the billboard project. So far, we have received contributions of $2,780. The media coverage, as I have said before, has been beyond our wildest dreams. There has been television, radio and newspaper coverage around the nation. Our billboards have appeared in blogs and e-mails in Ghana, Australia, Ireland, England, France, Belgium, and other locations.

This morning, the item was on the front page of the Boulder Daily Camera. The article raised a concern of my that has been building. The Camera article and others did not include all of the information I had given to the interviewers. Information such as, this is a group effort, sponsored by the Boulder Atheists, with generous contributions and support from all COCORE groups, and from dozens of people around the country. I just wanted to let you all know that this project would not have achieved the success it did without everyone's help. I know this and have consistently mentioned it. The list of contributors will appear on as soon as the donations stop coming in.

Lastly, please keep track of how many people contact your COCORE groups in response to the billboards so that we know how successful WE have been in our primary goal, reaching out to those who feel isolated.

Tim B.
Denver, CO
Post #: 92
On our calendar:

Monthly Meeting for the Humanists of Colorado Sunday 14 Dec 2008. Potluck 6pm. Program 7pm.

This month's program features Marvin Straus of the Colorado Coalition of Reason (COCORE) as our guest speaker. He will discuss the purpose and activities of COCORE, the recent billboard campaign directing people to the website, and the increased media attention this has brought to the local freethought organizations.

See you there...
Tim B.
Denver, CO
Post #: 94
Marvin Straus of the Colorado Coalition of Reason (COCORE) was featured on a recent mini-episode of the Dogma Free America Podcast which is at the URL:


Mon, 17 November 2008
Episode 68.5
Mini-Podcast on atheist themed billboards--interview with Marvin Straus of COCORE about billboards going up along Colorado's Front Range.

Dogma Free America is a podcast by Rich Orman of Aurora, Colorado.
A former member
Post #: 86
HEY!!!!! I Actually saw one of the billboards while driving to the store and I THOUGHT HEY!!!! THAT IS SOOOOOOOO COOOOOOOOOOLLLL!!!! I just smiled for ya all and U know what they get SEEN by folksies like me!!! HEHEHEHEHEHE!!!!!biggrin

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