A COVID COLLAGE: Capturing Lakewood's Story

A year-long project, hosted by the City of Lakewood's H2O Program Executive Committee Leaders,

to capture Lakewood's story of an exceptional year in a time capsule.

Mission of the project

Time capsules are used by communities to collect physical objects that tell a story of a place and time. It’s then “put away” - sometimes literally buried underground - with a specific date set for opening and viewing the contents. Our goal for re-opening is the year 2040. Future generations will have a record of what it felt like to live in the past, beyond what they might see in a book or even photos.

We are living through exceptional events, culturally and historically. This is a way to bring people together, examine how we are impacted together, how it is different for individuals. It will be empowering to acknowledge that we are part of something exceptional, to contribute to memorializing it.

The collections will take place in phases with information available as those collections open.

Covid Collage by Meg Winters (drop down to read article)

Introducing H2O’s newest project: A COVID COLLAGE: Capturing Lakewood’s Story

2020 was quite the unique year. Using the pandemic’s communal effect and differing experiences of the community, H2O is working diligently to turn these experiences into a creative project for the Lakewood community to take part in. “A COVID COLLAGE: Capturing Lakewood’s Story” will be Lakewood’s own time capsule to be used as a record for future generations. It will illustrate not only COVID-19, but also the numerous historic events of 2020. The goal of this project is to bring people together and create a resource that not only shows how it looks to live during this time, but also how it feels.

In order to capture an accurate picture of life during a pandemic, H2O will need help from everyone. This will be done by collecting your experiences in a creative way. The first opportunity to share your story will be provided in the upcoming weeks: a photo contest with several categories. The categories will guide the direction of the photos, such as the category “Together 6’ Apart.” The winners of each category will be selected by a panel of judges and have their artwork placed into the physical time capsule, with other submissions uploaded to a virtual time capsule. Other events will include art contests, writing contests, artifact collections, and more! More details about the photo contest and other events will be released at a later time.

Even before the photo contest begins, you can start participating by reflecting on your experience thus far. Brainstorm where you are interested in showcasing your talents: Will you submit a work of writing? Will you take pictures of what lockdown looks like to you? Will you paint an art piece about how COVID felt to you? Anything you contribute will help to paint a more accurate picture of life during 2020.

H2O Assistant Coordinator Mrs. Chodzin reflects on the meaning of the project: “Bringing our stories of the past year together in this project will give us a space in which to connect and reflect on our shared experience now as we move forward and to discover the revelation of perspective in 20 years when we look back.” This strongly captures the essence of “A COVID COLLAGE: Capturing Lakewood’s Story,” as it serves as a reminder that the time capsule is a tool to work and reflect together after a year of isolation and that the most important part is that we will be working together as a community.

With your help, H2O’s “A COVID COLLAGE: Capturing Lakewood’s Story” can become the perfect opportunity to create a time capsule that reflects the community’s unique story.


Expressions, cliches, favorite pasttimes, tv shows, movies, snacks, social change...what did we commonly say and do in 2020 that we didn't previously?

This anonymous survey will give us an overview of Lakewood during...unprecedented times!

Artifact Collection

What is an object that reflects this time in history?

More info to come!

March 2021- Photo Contest

Tell your story and share your photos! Details on the collection and entry form found here.

March 2021-Masked Selfie Submissions

We are collecting photos of masked selfies to compile a collage for display. Please upload up to FIVE masked selfies here.

June-August 2021 - Art Contest Event

Time to get creative! We are looking for creative expression in the form of art works- painting, collage, drawing, sculpture, etc.

More info to come!

September 2021 - Writing Events

The final phase of collection is WRITING- stories, poems, memoirs. Put your thoughts into writing and share them with us!

More info to come!


Contact emmie.hutchison@lakewoodoh.net or amy.chodzin@lakewoodcityschools.org to get more information on the project