You may have heard of the annual TED Conferences, which generate the amazing TED Talk videos that get passed around on the internet, leaving plenty of inspired people in their wake. (Some that fit in well with our themes of play, surprise, and adventure are: Gaming Can Make a Better WorldPlay is More Than Fun, and The Surprising Science of Happiness.)

Seeing the TED Talks live as they happen is pretty difficult to do, since attending TED Conferences cost several thousands of dollars and requires an application. Fortunately, there’s another, less exclusive way to see the talks as they happen—organizers licensed to run TEDx events (independently organized events held all over the world) can host a livestream of the TED Conference and open it to the public. We were fortunate enough to be asked to help organize a livestream party with the TEDxConcordiaUPortland team.

The event was held on Concordia University’s campus and allowed nearly 200 students and community members to be amongst the first to see this year’s crop of awesome TED speakers. The event has a somewhat challenging structure, as it runs from 8:30 in the morning to 7 in the evening, has several long breaks, and allows people to drop in as they like. To keep people engaged during the breaks, we offered a selection of board games, kept the food buffet stocked with different items throughout the day, featured a Retro Candy Bar, and had a photo booth where attendees could share their ideas as they related to the TED themes of the day.

The donuts that kept people coming back for more, from Tonnali’s.

The donuts that kept people coming back for more, from Tonnali’s.

Our Retro Candy Bar featured classic favorites like Pop Rocks, Nerds, Ring Pops, and Candy Necklaces (largely procured from Cosmic Candy)

Our Retro Candy Bar featured classic favorites like Pop Rocks, Nerds, Ring Pops, and Candy Necklaces (largely procured from Cosmic Candy)

The candy is ready for its closeup.

The candy is ready for its closeup.

What goes better with retro candy than a tub full of icy Capri Suns!

What goes better with retro candy than a tub full of icy Capri Suns!

We opted for a simple photo backdrop and let attendees play with the bright red TED letters or add their thoughts about the day’s themes on mini whiteboards

We opted for a simple photo backdrop and let attendees play with the bright red TED letters or add their thoughts about the day’s themes on mini whiteboards

Some people dream big.

Some people dream big.

A super casual pose from Marcus of Central City Coffee, who donated coffee for all the attendees

A super casual pose from Marcus of Central City Coffee, who donated coffee for all the attendees

Thanks very much to the faculty, students, and community members of the TEDxConcordiaUPortland planning team for inviting us to be a part of the livestream event. It was a blast!

By the way, while it’s too late to get tickets to this year’sTEDxConcordiaUPortland event on March 23rd, you might want to follow them on Facebook to get updates about next year’s event. It’s sure to be amazing!

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