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PechaKucha is part TED-talk, part semi-competitive sport, where value is placed on delivering an engaging speech within the bounds of 20 slides, 20 seconds per slide. PechaKucha Nights happen in over 700 cities around the world, and organizers in Louisville have a history of producing high quality PechaKucha events since 2010. In fact, videos from Louisville events are frequently featured on the international PechaKucha website (check out a roundup below of featured Louisville presentations).

In recent years PechaKucha Night Louisville has served up themed events looking at local food culture, urban activation, and improving education in our city. “PechaKucha Night Louisville brings people together from across the city to discuss ideas they are passionate about,” organizer Cliff Ashburner said.

Crowds pack the Forecastle Festival, which takes place in Downtown Louisville. (Courtesy Forecastle / Facebook)
Crowds pack the Forecastle Festival, which takes place in Downtown Louisville. (Courtesy Forecastle / Facebook)

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This Thursday’s event at ReSurfaced in Downtown Louisville assembles a group of speakers presenting short talks on Louisville’s festival scene, looking at some of the local events that are special to Louisville and that illustrate the unique culture of our city. Chad Kaydo, Brooklyn-based writer and professional event consultant recently wrote in Governing Magazine, “Municipal officials and entrepreneurs see the power of cultural events as a way to spur short-term tourism while shaping an image of the host city as a cool, dynamic location where companies and citizens in modern, creative industries can thrive.”

Festivals in Louisville are also quite effective at raising awareness around important issues while creating engaging spaces for people to lift up local culture. “Festivals are the truest showcases of our hometown culture, Louisville festival culture is great because you have purpose behind every event,” PechaKucha Louisville organizer Jecorey Arthur said.

This Thursday’s PechaKucha—beginning at 8:30p.m.—will feature a range of local festival founders and producers including:

  • Mike Berry—Kentucky Derby Festival, one of the premiere events of its kind in the world and a five-time winner of the International Festivals & Events Association award for Best Overall Festival.
  • Edgardo Mansilla—Americana World Festival, celebrating the cultural heritages of the people in the Louisville Metro area
  • Will Ford—Outsized Influence Festival, celebrating Bellarmine University’s rich musical tradition and impact on the region’s music scene
  • Rachel Firkins—St Joseph’s Picnic is the largest annual picnic in Kentucky, raising money for kids in need
  • Ina Miller—NuLuFest is a street festival celebrating the revitalization of Louisville’s East Market District.
  • Bob Muntis—CARDSFEST, a back-to-school block party during the first week of U of L’s fall semester, planned to be the University of Louisville’s biggest campus event ever
  • Carrie Neumayer—Louisville Outskirts Festival, a non-profit volunteer-run weekend celebrating music made by female-identified artists

And if confusion over the pronunciation of “Pecha Kucha” has stopped you from coming to past events, then this fun video from Linguistics Researcher Russ Mayne might lighten your fears (Note: beware the Muppet’s video!).

Internationally featured PechaKucha presentations from Louisville:

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