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Gary planning homecoming for former residents

Gary is asking expatriates to return to a gathering at ArtHouse: A Social Kitchen in September.

Gary is asking former residents to contribute to efforts to revitalize the city as it marks its 112th year in existence.

The Steel City plans to host a gathering of expatriates from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sept. 21 at Art House: A Social Kitchen, 411 E. 5th Ave. in downtown Gary. They'll be asked at "The Homecoming" for their ideas on how to revive Gary, as well as to consider volunteering their time and talents.

"We are inviting Gary natives who live in other communities and who have developed expertise in a variety of areas to come home and convene for a day to discuss how you can support the work that is being done to rebuild our city," Gary Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson said in a Facebook post. "You will have an opportunity to hear about the work that has been accomplished over the past seven years — the successes and the challenges. You will also be able to determine how you can best offer your insight and expertise in a way that will allow us to advance our work in the community."

Discussions will focus on economic development, job creation, public safety, health, education, infrastructure, logistics, technology and other subjects. The hope is that it will result in expatriates helping the city either through one-time volunteering or sustained projects.

"As we acknowledge the birthday of Gary, Indiana, we are asking you to provide the gift of your time," Freeman-Wilson said. "Come home on Sept. 21, 2018 at 10 a.m. and contribute to a work in progress."

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Business Reporter

Joseph S. Pete is a Lisagor Award-winning business reporter who covers steel, industry, unions, the ports, retail, banking and more. The Indiana University grad has been with The Times since 2013 and blogs about craft beer, culture and the military.