Single and Bitter on Valentine’s Day? Have No Fear, Public Relations is Here!

With Valentine’s Day coming up this weekend and graduation right around the corner, I have decided that I know a lot about public relations and a dismal amount about love. In my mind public relations has structure. When you face a public relations problem you state the problem, come up with a plan to fix it and then implement that plan. Although fixing a public relations problem takes hard work and creative problem solving, at the end of the day you can look at your work and see actual results. Now love, at least for me, is not quite that simple. In my mind it seems messy and complicated; and when a problem arises I just pretend like its not happening. I have discovered that this is a terrible strategy.

In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, I decided to take what I know about public relations and apply it to romance! It may sound insane, but my hope is to make solving a love problem as structured as finding a solution to a public relations problem.

Over the years I have learned that there is a four-step public relations process. These steps include assessing the problem, planning and programing a solution, putting your plan to action and then assessing your overall progress. This organized process has been used by PR professionals for decades and has lead to many successful public relations campaigns. So today, my love life is the public relations nightmare and the trusty public relations process is here to fix it.

So for once, thanks to public relations, I will come up with a structured plan on how to survive this Valentine’s Day as a content single woman.

Assess the Problem: What is happening now?
Let me start by saying that I have a myriad of relationship problems, but I don’t feel like my public relations class blog is the place to air my dirty laundry. So instead of focusing on all of my romantic failures, I will be focusing on the problem I have faced on every Valentine’s Day for my entire life: being single. How can I be content being single on a day where love is being shoved in my face? So here is my problem: why is this the only day of the year that I care about not having a boyfriend?

Planning and Programing: What should we do, say or change?
For me, Valentine’s Day is a total drag. I usually find myself yelling something like “Do you really think that chocolate heart and Yankee Candle he gave you is going to fix his intimacy problems Karen?” Its not that I’m not happy for all my friends with significant others, but do they really need an entire day to love each other? Shouldn’t every day be Valentine’s Day? So to counteract these negative feelings my plan will be to create a Galentine’s Day event for myself and my other single friends.

Taking Action and Communicating.
I will implement my Galentine’s Day plan by booking a venue to celebrate Galantines Day. I will also buy decorations, organize games and come up with fun things to talk about to distract my guests from any negative thoughts about their relationship status.

Assessment: How did we do?
Like any good public relations plan, my Galentine’s Day event will have to be assessed after it is complete. To do so I will check up with friends after the event in order to get feedback and make changes for next years event. And if you’re thinking, well what if you aren’t single next Valentine’s Day….I will be.

By following this public relations plan to create the perfectly distracting Galentine’s Day, being single on Valentine’s Day should never be a drag again!


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Helping Hands Filling Empty Bowls

For the third year in a row the Auburn Parks and Recreation’s Dean Road Ceramics Studio and Opelika Parks and Recreation’s Denson Drive Recreation Center will host the Empty Bowls event to benefit the Food Bank of East Alabama. The event will take place on Saturday, Feb. 13 from 10 a.m. – 2 the Denson Drive Recreation Studio in Opelika.A minimum donation of $10 per person entitles each ticket holder to their choice of a handmade bowl created by studio potters. They can then fill that bowl with soup and bread.

“The bowl is a take home reminder about food insecurities in your area. We don’t always think about how many people go to bed each night hungry so we hope Empty Bowls will help raise that awareness” said Cari Cleckler, art education specialist at Dean Road Ceramics Studio and Co-Host of Empty Bowls.DSC_0136

One of this year’s coordinators, Sherie Spain, pottery director at the Opelika Ceramics Studio, has been working on the event for over a year. She has arranged food donations from Panera Bread, Niffers and Jim Bobs; as well as volunteers servers from the Master Gardeners.

Aside from just corporate sponsors, local potters from Auburn and Opelika volunteer to make this event possible.

“All of the potters donate their time, and the clay and the glazes. Everything is donated by the potters. Every penny goes to the Food Bank, we do not deduct anything for expenses” Spain said.

This year’s event is a casual lunch where patrons can come and go as they please. The event will showcase the works of potters from both the Dean Road and Opelika ceramics studios. Aside from just lunch, patrons will be able to enjoy entertainment such as watching throwing demonstrations, hand building, sculpting and a children’s activity area. In addition, live music will be provided by harpist, Cindy Harris and local funk band, The Good Doctor.

Empty bowls is a grassroots effort across the nation to end hunger. To participate in an Empty Bowls Fundraising event you have to follow three simple rules. You must use handmade bowls, all proceeds have to go to a local food organization and there has to be an educational component about hunger in your area.


“I like organizations spreading the message of Empty Bowls,” Cleckler said. “To play into the education aspect, we are able to tailor a lot of our classes around Empty Bowls. For example, this summer we will offer an opportunity for kids to come in and help ‘Mold out Hunger’, that is the name of the class, where kids will get to make six bowls in which they keep three and donate three to next year’s Empty Bowls. That’s what I love the most, the coordination aspect of talking to so many different people about such a wonderful cause.”

For more information regarding the event or ticket sales, please contact Cari Cleckler, Art Education Specialist at or Sherie Spain, pottery director at 334-705-5558.

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