Popular community arts facilities, distinctive restaurants, coffee shops and apartment buildings surround the 34-acre park. Recent construction has brought many new town homes, condominiums and apartments to the area.
Loring Park is locally known for its diverse social mix and is a center for many arts and cultural events. One of the most dominant psychographic profiles reflecting the characteristics of this remarkable neighborhood is titled “Bohemian Mix” (source: Nielsen Research). This population segment is defined as:
“A collection of mobile urbanites and represents the nation’s most liberal lifestyles. Its residents are an ethnically diverse, progressive mix of young singles, couples, and families ranging from students to professionals. They are early adopters who are quick to check out the latest movie, nightclub, laptop, and microbrew.”
The population within a .5-mile radius of Saint Mark’s is approximately 3600 and approximately 28,105 people within a 2-mile radius. In addition, Loring Park is known as a central “space” for the LGBT community, for which Saint Mark’s has been an active advocate.
It is felt that the people living in this neighborhood reflect the “unchurched” (never affiliated with an organized faith), the “de-churched” (those who left an organized faith) and “seekers” (those who are seeking a faith experience). In addition, it is apparent that this neighborhood is searching for a different sort of spiritual experience and that efforts to “reach out” will result in the building of a faith community within the neighborhood that is rooted in the core needs of the people who call Loring Park home.
The Cathedral has been an active participant and supporter of “Pride Weekend” (re LGBT community focus), expanded the “blessing of the animals” into the surrounding apartments and toured three local facilities to sing Christmas carols. These efforts, were successful, and an expanded effort is planned for 2015.