Last night Mary and I got to experience our first Ignite Wilmington event. These “Ignite” events are happening in various cities across the country. This was the 5th event in Wilmington area but the first time we had a chance to go. Thanks to a strong social media networking effort across Delaware, Ignite Wilmington is becoming very popular and a great networking event which quickly sells out the venues where it is hosted.
The idea is simple but unique:
A night of presentations with a twist. Presenting on a subject of their choice, speakers have exactly five minutes to teach something, enlighten us, or simply inspire—backed by twenty slides auto-advancing every fifteen seconds.
The presentations were very well done and especially creative – not your typical “business meeting” PowerPoint slides by a long shot! They are not sales pitches but rather opportunities for local leaders to share things that they are passionate about. A sampling of what who we heard from included:
- Joseph Masiello – Delaware’s Teacher of the Year will speak about the Power of Teachers!
- Patrick Callahan – How a tweet turned into a trip for him to Pakistan (which he returned safely from!)
- Kati Driscoll – AAA – How to decide if your social program is successful
- Sam Hobbs – Twin Lakes Brewing
- J. Anthony Miguez – Putting Wilmington on the map
- Maiza Hixson – DCCA
- Bill Swezey- What is “The Cloud” Anyway and Why Should I Care?
- Scott Spencer – The potential of High Speed Rail for Delaware and our nation
- Mike Schwartz – 2nd & LOMA- One year later
- Julie MacWilliams and Erin Sicuranza – Jumping the Mommy Track
This one was especially well timed as they held it in the recently renovated Queen Theater on Market Street. The Queen was once a vibrant place that was a vital part of the downtown community in the late 19th and first half of the 20th century. I was amazed to recently learn of the history and the significance that the Queen played in the life of Wilmington, which makes its return all the more special as the city revitalizes itself especially in the LoMa (Life On Market) area.
I definitely look forward to attending future Ignite Wilmington events as well as seeing performances at the World Cafe Live at the Queen!