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A Taste of Iceland

Ever since Icelandair started providing direct flights from Edmonton to Reykjavik, Iceland, everyone has been excited to see what this new friendship will bring. With great publicity and buzz, the destination seems to be on every bucket list.

Icelandair had many Edmontonians, myself included, running around the City several weeks ago continuously refreshing their twitter feeds in the hopes of winning free airline tickets to Reykjavik. When Iceland Naturally announced A Taste of Iceland, a festival celebrating Iceland’s food and music, I also came running. The event ran from March 5 – 8, with Icelandic cuisine showcased at Characters Fine Dining and two free Reykjavik Calling concerts at Brixx Bar and Grill, featuring emerging musical talents from both Iceland and Edmonton.

The Brixx Bar and Grill certainly got cozy and intimate with a very diverse crowd of age, background, and style eager to enjoy the anticipated cadence. I Am Machi took centre stage March 7, starting the evening off on a good note. Icelandic Lay Low, with a voice that sends chills down your spine, was next, performing alone as well as in collaboration with Edmonton’s Kaley Bird. Sin Fang of Iceland and Cygnets of Edmonton ended the night, playing separately as well as joining forces. March 8’s concert consisted of Hermigervill of Iceland along with local acts DJ Ten-O, The Specialist, and DJ Degree.

It was very cool to see Edmonton so excited about their newfound connection with Iceland, and coming together to celebrate it through the arts; listening to the dialogue that everyone understands: music.

-Written by Morgan Messelink

Iceland Picture 1 Iceland Picture 2

Designing Downtown – Thank You

Thank you to everyone who came out to Designing Downtown activities on October 5, 2013!

This inspiring day of activities, fostered and made possible by the vision of the Designing Downtown movement, is a testament to the incredible people, organizations and businesses committed to conversations around the development of urban cores.

 

 

DDSlideThanksPartners

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Candi(date) | October 15 & 16, 2013

On October 15 & 16, 2013, Edmonton’s NextGen, the City of Edmonton’s Youth Council, The Students’ Association of MacEwan University, and the U of A’s Student Union invite you to attend the 4th Annual CANDI(DATE), a speed-dating style event focused around engaging young voters. Candi(DATE) has been well-attended in the past and represents an opportunity to connect with young voters, hear their ideas and visions, and share yours.

Our city is growing at a rapid pace, both in population and infrastructure development. Increased access to public transportation, revitalizing the downtown core and community growth are issues attracting major attention in the media and on the street. CANDI(DATE) provides a space for you to reach out directly to Edmonton’s young voter population and share your thoughts and perspectives.

Each 15 minute session will allow you to sit down with small groups and speak candidly about your platform and vision for the future of Edmonton. This face-time with candidates allows young voters the opportunity to ask questions on issues that impact their decision to make Edmonton the city they choose to live, work, learn and play in for future years.

JPEG_NorthFinal

Candi(date) North:

  • When: Tuesday, October 15th 5 PM – 7 PM
  • Where: Heart of the Robbins (Main Floor, Robbins Building) Grant MacEwan University (10910- 104 Ave.)
  • Who will be there: Candidates from Wards 1, 2, 3, 4, 6 and 7 and Edmonton Mayoral Candidate
  • To RSVP http://candi-date.eventbrite.com/

JPEG_southFinal

Candi(date) South:

  • When: Wednesday, October 16, 2013
  • Where: SUBStage, Students Union Building, University of Alberta (8900-114 St.)
  • Who will be there: Candidates from Wards 5, 8, 9, 10, 11 and 12 and Edmonton Mayoral Candidates
  • To RSVP https://candi-date2.eventbrite.com/

National Roster of Design Advocates Participating in Pecha Kucha Night 17

PKN17_Billboard
Designing Downtown, one of the largest and richest citizen-driven conversations about urban cores in Canada, returns to Edmonton October 5, 2013. For a full list of upcoming events, visit www.designingdowntown.ca.

 “For Progress Unlimited, MADE and Edmonton’s NextGen to brainstorm, curate, and welcome this outstanding group of speakers to Edmonton is an incredible opportunity to foster national dialogue and exchange about the role we all play in urban development,” says Lisa Baroldi, Vision Holder – Progress Unlimited.  “We’re thrilled to showcase Edmonton created content throughout the day at makescape 2 and in surprising ways at Pecha Kucha Night.” 

Pecha Kucha Night 17 Speakers   

Special Presentation by:

  • Roman Mars (San Francisco) – Host/Producer, 99% Invisible

Designing Downtown is a movement to transform downtowns founded by Progress Unlimited, MADE , and Edmonton’s NextGen. Designing Downtown is a vehicle for inter-city exchange for partnerships that seek to enrich and advance the conversations and actions we take to shape downtowns as spaces for everyone. Designing Downtown is an experiment and exchange; an opportunity to create dialogue that celebrates & critiques; and a space to be a fixture in and designer of the urban experience.

Pecha Kucha Night 17, doors at 6:30 pm at the Winspear Centre, challenges presenters to follow the 20 images x 20 seconds format that has gained popularity in more than 600 cities around the globe. Tickets are on sale now via TIX On The Square; charge by phone 780-420-1757 or online at www.tixonthesquare.ca. Tickets are $35 for general admission, $30 for students (with I.D.), and $30 for groups of 10 or more; all tickets plus services fees and GST.

Edmontonians are encouraged to immerse themselves in the Designing Downtown movement with makescape2 at Centennial Plaza (behind the Stanley Milner Library) from 3 pm – 11pm; prior, during and following PKN 17. This project is an urban intervention that transforms an underutilized space using design and art elements, food, and entertainment into a space that entices passerby to interact with the environment and each other differently.

Join the conversation online with hashtags #DD2013 and #yegpkn. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.designingdowntown.ca.

Founding Partners
Progress - Web PullMADE-horizontalNEXTGEN

June is NextGen Month!

 NEXTGEN 2013-05-31 Nextgen month v4 copy

June is NextGen Month! Just in time for some serious sunny weather and long days at the park or on the patio, NextGen and our partners are proud to host some great events this month to celebrate all that is vibrant and fresh in Edmonton (that’s you, by the way).

We’ve got some great stuff going on and can’t wait to see all of you out making the most of what our city has to offer. Mayor Mandel will be proclaiming NextGen Month at Pecha Kucha Night on June 13th, so make sure you stop by and check out some of our events:

Pecha Kucha Night 16 | Thursday, June 13th, Citadel’s MacLab Theatre -  Buy your tickets here

DIYalogue Talks Fashion | Tuesday, June 25th, ATB Financial Arts Barns (formerly TransAlta) - Buy your tickets here

Looking forward to seeing all of you out and about this month!

DIYalogue Talks Fashion!

In a city well known for only having two seasons (winter and kinda winter), it takes a lot of effort on our part as Edmontonians to make sure we look good when we leave the house in the blowing snow in the morning , to when we get home at the end of the day and it’s +25C in the shade.

Enter: A formidable force of creative prowess, industrious genius, and just some all around awesome folks who substantially contribute to the distinct vibrancy of our city.  That’s right, Edmonton’s fashion industry wants to hang out with YOU, you fashionable cat, you. Edmonton’s NextGen presents: DIYalogue Talks Fashion, the next of the 15 minute speed-mentoring sessions that connect you with your community.

NEXTGEN 2013-05-10 DIYalogue Fashion Poster Optimized for WebPage

Join us on Tuesday, June 25th from 7:00-9:00pm at the ATB Financial Arts Barns (formerly known as the TransAlta Arts Barns), and connect with some of Edmonton’s leading players in our local fashion community. We’ve got a great line up of mentors, so check ‘em out below:

We’re pretty sure that amazing line up is the only reason you’ll need to grab some tickets and head down with your friends to connect with some of our best and brightest fashionistas, models and local talent.

Advanced ticket for this event ($8 + fees) can be bought online  or in person at the Pawn Shop (10551 Whyte Ave) and the Avenue Theatre (9030 – 118 Ave). Tickets will also be available at the door for $10 (cash only).

What’s more, is that by attending our events, you’re also supporting local talent and you know how much we love local talent over here at Edmonton’s NextGen. (hint: A LOT!)

Don’t forget to like and follow us on Facebook for mentor updates and some other cool surprises that we might throw your way closer to the event, and as always – The Twitter! – @EdmNextGen.

Can’t wait to see you guys on June 25th for a night of couture, Go-See-crets, glamour and FUN!

Ignite presents Ideas for Edmonton

Ignite presents Ideas for Edmonton, a crowd funding model with a twist! Community members who are passionate about making Edmonton a better place to live are encouraged to post their project on the Ideas for Edmonton website – backers throw their support for projects with votes rather than donations. Edmonton’s NextGen, and a host of sponsors, kick-in the financial backing with $10,000 in funding available.

“Have you ever wanted to make a difference in your community but didn’t know where to start? You are not alone,” says Sherman Tsang, Ignite Co-Chair. “Ideas for Edmonton is a local social incubator, a tool to help turn thoughts into actions. Any city resident, looking to make Edmonton a better place to live, can submit a single idea that could be turned into reality!”

Ideasforedmonton.com is an easy-to-use on-line portal where the public can register ideas, search out interesting projects, discuss opportunities and cast votes.

Voting is tallied in three ways:

  • A single vote is counted when an individual comments on an idea (a single vote per user, not per comment);
  • A single vote is counted when an individual clicks on the +1 Give Vote link on an idea page;
  • Two votes are counted when an individual clicks on the +2 Give Time link on an idea page.
  •  Individuals that click this option will be contacted by NextGen following the competition to connect with fellow voters for potential volunteer opportunities to make a specific project move forward.

Idea submissions and Round 1 votes are accepted until April 21st.  The top 10 ideas, as calculated by total votes, will go on to Round 2 where a panel of judges will select one or two ideas to receive funding, volunteer support (as sourced through the +2 Give Time voters) and additional mentoring from established makers in the community. Edmonton’s NextGen is proud to foster the success of a variety of community projects and lend its planning expertise to the winning projects. Final winners will be announced in early May, 2013.

Timeline

Round 1: Voting

  • March 21st, 2013: Launch, Submissions open for ideasforEdmonton.com
  • March 22nd, 2013 (Noon): Winners for the Blue Plate Diner gift certificates + New Balance Acupuncture treatment are drawn
  • March 24th, 2013 (11:59PM): Top Voted Idea by this point is automatically selected as 1 of 10 Top Voted Ideas going into Round 2
  • April 21st, 2013 (11:59 PM): Voting Stops, end of Round #1

Round 2: Judging

  • April 23rd, 2013: Top 10 Voted Ideas Announced, Round 2 Forms provided
  • Round 2 Forms to be provided to Top 10 by Ignite. These forms serve as your application for funding and support from Edmonton’s NextGen Ignite. Completed forms must be completed by deadline to qualify for consideration.
  • April 28th, 2013 (11:59 PM): Deadline for filling in Round 2 Forms/Documents
  • May 2nd, 2013: Winner(s) Announced!

Ideas for Edmonton is proud to be a Make Something Edmonton project! #makesomethingyeg = a show & tell of cool projects #ideas4yeg = funding & resources to help make cool projects reality.  Visit our project page at www.makesomethingedmonton.ca.

PECHA KUCHA NIGHT 15 | WHERE IDEAS AND CREATIVITY SOAR

TICKETS ON SALE NOW! 

PKN15 - web

Edmonton’s NextGen presents Pecha Kucha Night 15 on March 7, 2013 at Northlands’ Edmonton EXPO Centre in the Alberta Ballroom. PKN 15 features presentations on local ideas, projects and musings in the 20 slides x 20 second per slide format made popular world-wide by Klein Dytham Architecture. Tickets are on-sale now via TIX on the Square, charge by phone at 780-420-1757 or online at www.tixonthesquare.ca. Tickets are $10 for students (with I.D.) and $12 for adults. Doors and bar open at 6:30 p.m., with presentations beginning at 7:30 p.m.

More than 150 presentations have been given at Edmonton Pecha Kucha Nights to-date on wide ranging topics, from Showing nature’s naughty bits to Light it up, #yeg! and everything in between. New for PKN 15, Edmonton’s NextGen welcomes Firefly Theatre & Circus for a special aerial performance and music provided by Girls Club. Famoso Neapolitan Pizza returns with gift cards for all ticket holders.

Pecha Kucha Night 15 presentations include:

*Presenters appear in the order they will present

Tokyo’s Klein Dytham Architecture first devised Pecha Kucha, the Japanese phrase for “the sound of chitchat” in 2003, as a night for young designers to meet, network, and discuss their projects. The catch: each designer gives a presentation containing only 20 images, each shown for 20 seconds, for a total presentation length of six minutes 40 seconds. Conceived as a venue through which young designers could meet, show their work, exchange ideas, and network, the format keeps presentations concise, fast-paced and entertaining.

Join the conversation on Twitter and Instagram using the hashtag #yegpkn.

PKN 15 is sponsored by: Capital Power Corporation, City of Edmonton, Famoso Neapolitan Pizzeria, Graphos, and Klein Dytham.

PKN 15 Sponsors

DIYalogue Talks Quality Play

Edmonton’s NextGen presents DIYalogue Talks Quality Play, a cultural mix-and-mingle in the style of NextGen’s popular Candi{date} series, 7-9 PM on Thursday, January 24, 2013 at The Billiard Club, 10502-82 Avenue. Tickets are $10.00 plus service fees and available online at www.yeglive.ca

DIYalogue Talks Quality Play is inspired by the worlds of gaming, game-playing and healthy competition. Participants connect to mentors in 15 minute speed-dating sessions to converse with local businesses, organizations and teams in hopes of spending some quality time playing in new ways.

Confirmed speed mentors include:

APPLY TO PRESENT AT PECHA KUCHA NIGHT 15

Have a little extra time on your hands during the holidays? Are you looking for an opportunity to present your ideas to an audience of more than 700 engaged and creative young people? Edmonton’s NextGen is currently accepting presentation submissions for Pecha Kucha Night 15, March 7, 2013 at Northlands’ Edmonton EXPO Centre. More than 150 presentations have been given at Edmonton Pecha Kucha Nights to date on wide reaching topics, from lighting up Edmonton’s bridges to in vitro meat and everything in between.

For more information on Pecha Kucha Nights and to apply to present, visit http://www.edmontonnextgen.ca/pkn/applying-to-present-at-pecha-kucha-night-edmonton or fill out this handy form!

Deadline for submissions is February 7, 2013. 

Holiday Patio Party | December 8, 2012

 

 Edmonton’s NextGen, in partnership with Public House, invites Edmontonians to help ring in the holiday season with its first-ever Holiday Patio Party, 8:00 PM – 11:00 PM on Saturday, December 8 at the Public House patio, 10765 Jasper Avenue. Please note this event is 18+.

Guests are invited to cozy up under a canopy of lights and enjoy a unique collaboration between the Urban Monks and VJ’s from Guru Digital Arts as they create interactive, winter-themed live projections. No need to worry about the weather, hot appetizers, warm seasonal drinks and warming stations will be provided to keep everyone toasty warm no matter the temperature!

Held in conjunction with the Public House, Winter City Strategy Think Tank and Downtown Edmonton Community League, admission to the Holiday Patio Party is free. Hot soup and chili will be sold for $2 to raise funds for one of Edmonton’s inner city charities.

For more information and to RSVP, please visit https://www.facebook.com/events/116446401852974/

 

MEÆT 3.5: The Amphitheatre

It’s MEÆT time!  Edmonton’s NextGen and the Ignite Working Group present MEÆT 3.5: The Amphitheatre at 5:30 pm on December 10, 2012 at the Citadel’s Tucker Amphitheatre, 9828 101A Ave.  In addition to the awesome project/idea/cause pitches, food will be provided by Normand’s Bistro (88% on Urbanspoon!), tunes will be spun by DJ Polyesterday, and we will enjoy performances by our hosts, Rapid Fire Theatre!  Tickets are expected to go fast, so RSVP on Eventbrite!

This is your chance to:

Share a meal.
Connect.
Enjoy performances.
Cast your vote.
Make a difference now.
Become a philanthropist.

There are 2 ways you can enjoy a MEÆTing:

You can (1) apply to have a project funded and come enjoy dinner, and present your project or (2) come enjoy dinner, experience the presentations, vote for your favourite, and donate $10 to fund something awesome.

The best presentation (as determined by the votes) receives the night’s funding.

MEÆT is an event designed to bring us together for a meal and together fund home-grown projects. By getting together and pooling our wealth we can avoid bureaucracy, get right down to the meat of an idea and make it happen.

Visit www.meaet.com for more information and to submit proposals!

 

Growth Coordination Strategy | Letter to Council

November 19, 2012

Office of the Councillors
2nd Floor, City Hall
1 Sir Winston Churchill Square
Edmonton, AB  T5J 2R7

RE: Growth Coordination Strategy

Dear Mayor Mandel and City Council,

Edmonton’s NextGen Steering Committee requests that Executive Committee consider postponing item 6.15, Growth Coordination Strategy, to the next Executive Committee meeting. This will allow for sufficient time to review and comment on the new draft Growth Coordination Strategy which wasn’t released until November 15, 2012.

Over the course of developing this strategy NextGen has made several attempts to provide input as the outcomes of Edmonton’s Growth Coordination will have a substantial impact on future Edmontonians. To date, there has not been a clear or meaningful way for NextGen to engage its membership and provide this necessary feedback. We are hopeful that through Council’s review of this strategy and the creation of the implementation plan, NextGen is incorporated into the public engagement of this strategy.

We are aware that two drafts of the Growth Coordination Strategy have been made available for public review. The first in May 2012 and the current report which was released just last week.  We have done an initial review of the current draft and have noted that there are substantial differences between the two documents. Some of the most concerning deletions from the new draft include strategies and actions to promote infill development and create new sustainable communities.

Future growth of the city including, competing infrastructure demands, will greatly impact our generation. As such, we feel strongly that our input and consultation is crucial in the development of a Growth Coordination Strategy and subsequent implementation plans.  The Growth Coordination strategy must take a holistic approach to managing sustainable growth in Edmonton, including the management of infill development to meet the targets set out in the Municipal Development Plan.

It is our hope that you will allow NextGen and the community adequate time to review and provide feedback on the draft strategy prior to it returning to Executive Committee.  We would like to thank you for your time and consideration of our request.  If you should have any questions or concerns, please contact us at tegan.martindrysdale@redmontonnextgen.ca and brian.murray@edmontonnextgen.ca.

Best Regards,

Tegan Martin-Drysdale

Edmonton’s NextGen Committee

Community Co-Chair

Brian Murray

Edmonton’s NextGen Committee

Civic Co-Chair

cc: Gary Klassen, General Manager, Sustainable Development
Peter Ohm, Manager, Urban Planning and Environment, Sustainable Development
Kathy Barnhart, Manager, Community and Social Development, Community Services

Note for our Edmonton NextGen website readers: For more information on the Growth Coordination Strategy and to read the November 2012 draft, visit http://www.edmonton.ca/city_government/urban_planning_and_design/growth-coordination-strategy.aspx.

Dance: A Constant Thrill | NextGen Speaks Out on the Arts

I’m very fortunate to work alongside artists; helping share their work with audiences. Art, specifically dance, is such an influential force in my life and the idea of bringing artists & audiences together is still a constant thrill.

 

Just like birthdays, family reunions and Christmas mornings, there are dance moments that measure milestones in my life, evoke memories and shape the way I navigate the world:

  • Standing in a dance studio, geared up head-to-toe in ballet gear, and having no clue what was going to happen next
  • The waltz scene by the river in An American in Paris
  • Seeing La La La Human Steps at the Jubilee for my big 15th birthday
  • Finding out the hanging meat & underpants performance I convinced myself I made up was in fact a reality, courtesy of Brian Webb

 

These dance moments reflected the experiences of others, the possibilities of the moving body* and the courage to express opinions and feelings in a way nothing else has or likely will for me.

 

Ben Cameron, Program Director, Arts, at the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, when he was in town as part of the Percolate Speaker Series spoke about the importance of arts participation. He shared an insight that Americans were, in part, so invested in sport because they saw many images of J.F.K. participating in sporting activities and mirrored that in their own lives. This notion really struck a chord with me: one of the reasons I was so drawn to dance was that it was easy for me to transport the dancers’ experience to my own.

 

It got me thinking that the opportunity to experience dance from a young age, both as a student and an audience member, also gave me the confidence to participate in other types of art, whether it was going to an opera or a gallery.

Having a connection to one art form made it easy to put my trust in all artists that their work would inspire, challenge and entertain.

 

Just as we trust dentists to keep our teeth healthy, police officers to keep us safe and teachers to educate us – I trust artists to share their stories, to find the amazing connections that bring us all together and archive the human experience in all its permutations. It’s an incredible calling that takes sacrifice, bravery and dedication.

 

The third item on my list of memorable dance moments, La La La Human Steps, came full circle this year when Louise Lacavalier returned to Edmonton to perform new work as part of the BWDC season.

 
Louise Lecavalier
Image reprinted with the Author’s Permission by Brian Webb Dance Company on August 8, 2012

 

As a teenager I was amazed by her strength, precision and sexuality on stage. Frankly, I was shocked that my parents would send me off to see the show. As an adult, watching her perform was equally awe inspiring. Rather than being moved by the sheer physicality of her performance, it was the incredible ability to reign in her body that gave power to the emotional elements of the work. On the way home from the theatre and the days that followed, I thought often of how fortunate I was that someone was willing to share that kind of honesty and commitment with roomfuls of strangers.

 

As we move closer to the 2012-2013 arts season,

I encourage you to put your trust in artists and try something new.

Dance might not be your cup of tea but in Edmonton’s thriving cultural communities there’s a bounty of options to choose from!

 

*The moving body is a favourite phrase of Brian Webb, Artistic Director of the Brian Webb Dance Company.

 

 

Bio:
Stephanie Enders
Stephanie is ecstatic about promoting the arts in Canada and is currently a Project Manager at Bottom Line Productions, a marketing and communications agency with a focus on arts and not-for-profit clients. Stephanie is passionate about the arts and thrilled to be working in an industry where the main focus is on supporting creativity. A long-time Next Gen volunteer, Stephanie values the opportunity to shape the city she chooses to live, learn and work in.

 

Disclaimer
NextGen Speaks Out, our guest blogging series, is envisioned as a hub for information and discussion. NextGen is a non-political, non-denominational organization focused on giving all nextgeners a voice. NextGen does not represent the opinions expressed by the individual columnists.

NextGen Speaks Out | August Theme announcement

August’s NextGen Speaks Out! theme will be the Arts


 
The Arts are in the air during the summer and most of us have caught the bug. Whether you are headed out to a festival or block party, are hitting up an improv show, going out to a see a band play, or watching a street performer on the street you are bound to come up against Edmonton’s arts scence.

 

This month we will be bringing you posts on and about Edmonton’s arts scene in Edmonton. Edmonton artists and supporters will be sharing their perspectives about Edmonton art scene in all shapes and forms. An artist thrives on expression and needs your help to support their art.

 

We also want you to engage in discussion. Come on nextgener’s we know you have opinions and thoughts on these themes too. We’d love for you to comment, start a discussion, and share these posts with your networks.

 

Check back weekly as we will be adding new NextGen Speaks Out! posts regularly. We’re looking forward to it and hope you do too!

 

Disclaimer
NextGen Speaks Out, our guest blogging series, is envisioned as a hub for information and discussion. NextGen is a non-political, non-denominational organization focused on giving all nextgeners a voice. NextGen does not represent the opinions expressed by the individual columnists.

LATITUDE 53 ROOFTOP PATIO SERIES

 

Why wait for the weekend? The hottest patio party of the summer kicks off courtesy of Latitude 53 and interVivos, in partnership with Edmonton’s NextGen and Canadian International Council-Edmonton. Make your way down to the Latitude 53 Art Gallery (10248 106th Street) after work on Thursday, August 9th, 5pm – 10pm, and join us on downtown’s favourite roof top patio to savour the summer in style.

There’s so much on the table for you and friends to enjoy:

  • Celebrate Edmonton’s festival season with an array of entertainment, featuring DJs, belly dancers, a special Fringe Festival preview performance and more;
  • Indulge in the diverse art and installations courtesy of Latitude 53, featuring this week’s entry in the Summer Incubator Series, Daniel Chmieleski;
  •  Sip on drinks from the gallery bar and enjoy hors d’oeuvres provided by  Suede Lounge;
  • Strike a pose at Latitude’s photo wall;
  • Win door prizes;
  • Find out more about engaging your city with interVivos, Edmonton’s NextGen and Canadian International Council-Edmonton.

Admission to the August 9th Latitude 53 Patio Party is by donation; your generosity helps support contemporary visual culture in Edmonton. In addition, donations of new toiletries for YESS – Youth Empowerment & Support Services – will also be accepted.

For more information, visit www.latitude53.org. Join the conversation on Twitter, hashtag #yegrooftop

The Problem with Food | NextGen Speaks Out on Food

The problem, I find, with the food industry is that…

Soon after you feed your customers, they are hungry again and they come back for more.

 

This pressure of continual hunger from your customers has put a great strain on the industry, encouraging businesses to fill that hunger need with whatever means possible. This pressure is true not only for the little local minded food businesses, but also for the large multinational food corporations.

 

You can go into a fast food chain and find the same hamburger across North America because of the demand for consistency for that hamburger. And you can also find chefs of small restaurants sacrificing sleep whilst they scour the city for a bag of locally grown onions for tomorrows special because there is a demand for the knowledge of where your food comes from. The pressure is the same for all sectors of the food industry.

 
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Creating Community: Why Local Food Is Not A Spectator Sport | NextGen Speaks Out on Food

It’s official: the backlash against local food has begun. May it be as short-lived as it is ill-conceived.

 

Earlier this year, a Toronto couple released ‘The Localvore’s Dilemma’, critiquing the localvore movement and turning on its head many of the valorous claims it made. Lower carbon footprint? More ethically sourced? All quantifiably bunk, say authors Pierre Desrochers and Hiroko Shimizu.

 

But they miss the most important motivating factor of the local food movement.

It’s never been about quantitative trade-offs on miles-trucked or litres-of-pesticide-sprayed. It’s about satisfying a deep, emotional desire to feel connected to what’s on our plate.

 

Two years ago, at Pecha Kucha night 8, I delivered a talk about some of the tensions of local food – the need to overcome the geographic barriers of our cold, continental climate; the fickleness of the tastemakers that deem local food trendy and authentic; and the risk of cooption from bigger players in the agrifood business. But in my talk, I forgot one divisive, and perhaps unsolvable challenge: isolation.

 
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The NextGen of Restaurants | NextGen Speaks Out on Food


“We as a society and as an economy need to start optimizing for a large number of small things, not just relying on a small number of large things.”

– Woody Tasch, Founder of Slow Money Alliance.

 

This quote would resonate with most people who are thinking about the next generation. So then, what is the direction of restaurants in this next generation going to be? Are we happy eating at any establishment that is not a chain, a ‘large thing’? I think we can do better than that. I like this quote mainly because of the word ‘optimizing’ and I will explain myself.

 
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NextGen Speaks Out | July Theme announcement

July’s NextGen Speaks Out! theme will be Food

 
Summer is in full swing. Do you know how I know, besides the weather? Well the signs are all there. I know that you will be able to identify with at least a few of this signs.

 

  • The BBQs are out in full force, the aroma of my neighbours’ dinner taunting me on my way home. An unspoken challenge to get out there and make something on the grill.
  • Gardens are starting to produce fresh vegatables, fruit and herbs. Now you can go just a few steps to your backyard/balcony to collect ingredients for dinner instead of something trucked into the store.
  • Then there is the multitiude of Edmonton and area farmers markets which are now bustling with people on weeknights as well as weekends.
  • Patios are quickly becoming a hot commodity on lunches and after work. You almost have to leave early to send someone to “save” you a table, so you can enjoy your libations in the sunshine.
  • Last but not least we are on the brink of the festival season. It won’t be long before we can rub elbows (litterally and figuratively) at the Taste of Edmonton and then Heritage days is right around the corner.
  •  

    This month we will be bringing you tantalizing, and thought-provoking posts on and about the food scene in Edmonton. Ww’ll share what that means to a consumer, to a foodie, to a business owner, to an activist, and to someone who loves to cook, bake, and create.

     

    We also want you to engage in discussion. Come on nextgener’s we know you have opinions and thoughts on these themes too. We’d love for you to comment, start a discussion, and share these posts with your networks.

     

    Check back weekly as we will be adding new NextGen Speaks Out! posts regularly. We’re looking forward to it and hope you do too!

     

    Disclaimer
    NextGen Speaks Out, our guest blogging series, is envisioned as a hub for information and discussion. NextGen is a non-political, non-denominational organization focused on giving all nextgeners a voice. NextGen does not represent the opinions expressed by the individual columnists.

    MEÆT 3.0 | Mystery MEÆT Edition

    Edmonton’s NextGen presents MEÆT 3.0 | MICRO-FUNDING TOGETHER | Mystery MEÆT Edition on June 28, 2012, at 6:00 PM at a mystery location! A project of ENGAGE, producers of the popular DIYalouge and Candi{date} forums, MEÆT brings local creatives and Edmontonians together for an evening of short pitches followed by a shared meal. At the end of the meal, all diners (each of whom put $10 to the pot, no charge for the food) vote on which proposal receives the pot of funds to move forward with their project: immediate funding for awesome ideas! For more information on MEÆT, to register as diner, or to pitch an idea, visit www.meaet.com.   All diners and presenters are to meet at Century Park Bus Terminal at 6:00 PM sharp to be whisked away by ETS to the top-secret MEÆT 3.0 location.

    MEÆT 3.0 brings us together for a meal and to fund home-grown projects. By getting together and pooling our wealth we can avoid bureaucracy, get right down to the meat of an idea and make it happen. We’re thrilled to partner with ETS and the City of Edmonton to offer our Mystery MEÆT edition. We hope you’ll join us on this adventure; stay tuned to the NextGen Twitter and Facebook pages for  updates and more information,” says Carol Neuman, Engage Working Group Co-Chair.

    Edmonton NextGen is looking for MEÆTing participants – limited space is available:

    1. Presenters: Apply to have a project funded, present your project & come enjoy dinner;
    2. Diners: Come enjoy dinner, experience the presentations, vote for your favorite, and donate $10 to fund something awesome;
    3. Less than 30 spots remain; register as a Presenter or Diner at www.meaet.com.
    We look forward to seeing you at MEÆT 3.0 | Mystery MEÆT Edition!