Recap: GalaGuru 2010

Last night was the 2nd Annual GalaGuru, “an event that celebrates the co-mingling of the creative arts and technology.” Hosted by Guru Digital Arts College at the fantastic Latitude 53, the party was very well-attended and was lots of fun! The style was “Mad Men / Stray Cats rockabilly” and while there was some discussion as to what that meant, some people just looked amazing.

The festivities got underway at 6pm, with most people arriving closer to the start of the “program” at 7pm. Guru’s Owen Brierley shared some news on Guru Digital Arts College and congratulated the school’s most recent grads. In 2008, they had 14 students. Last year, they had 28. And this year, they are aiming for 56! It’s great to see them growing here in Edmonton.

GalaGuru 2010GalaGuru 2010

The Be Arthurs, Edmonton’s official ukulele cover band, rocked out for most of the evening. Hip hop artist Steb Sly was also on hand to keep the party lively. There were computers setup around the space (which many people used to check Twitter) and in the “viewing room” attendees were treated to ZoomJer’s creepy basement videos as well as screenings of some the Guru students’ most recent work. Of course, there was also good food and local drinks!

The Be Arthurs

I was really happy that Guru decided to support Twestival this year, meaning we could have one bigger event rather than two smaller ones. The money raised last night will go to Concern Worldwide, an organization that provides education for the world’s poorest children. In addition to whatever online donations were made, we managed to raise $293 last night. Thanks everyone!

GalaGuru 2010@bingofuel

In his opening remarks, Owen did a good job of highlighting Edmonton’s various creative communities and how they are increasingly getting connected. Last night was proof of that – lots of people told me they had never been to Latitude 53 before, and that they didn’t know too much about Guru. It’s always a good thing when local people meet one another!

GalaGuru 2010GalaGuru 2010

Thanks to Guru for hosting such a great event – can’t wait until the next one! You can see a few more photos here.

GalaGuru 2010 & Edmonton Twestival

Guru Digital Arts College, a digital media school located in downtown Edmonton, is hosting an event on March 25 at Latitude 53 called GalaGuru to celebrate the co-mingling of the creative arts and technology. This is the second year they’ve held the event, which features local food, interactive exhibits, and Edmonton’s own The Be Arthurs!

Also on March 25, is Twestival Global 2010. Hundreds of cities around the world, including Edmonton, will be hosting local events to create awareness for the important cause of education. All funds raised will go to Concern Worldwide, an organization that provides education for the world’s poorest children. Founded in 1968, Concern’s current education programs reach over 700,000 people in 25 countries. Twestival is also a fun way to meet other local Twitter users face-to-face!

So we’ve got a local educational institution hosting a big party on the same day that Twitter users are rallying around education. Sounds like a great match! That’s why were joining forces:

WHO: You and all your friends!
WHAT: GalaGuru 2010 & Edmonton Twestival (on ShareEdmonton)
WHEN: March 25, 2010 at 6 PM
WHERE: Latitude 53 – 10248 106 Street
WHY: To celebrate creative arts, technology, and education!

If you’re planning to attend, please RSVP and if you’re on Twitter, add your name to the wiki. You can donate to Concern online (use the widget on the right here), or bring your donation with you to the event. Hope to see you there!

Recap: EdmontonTweetup6

Just got home from our sixth “official” tweetup here in Edmonton! Thanks to @britl for organizing, as she did for our last tweetup. Tonight we met at Ceilis Irish Pub downtown. They just joined Twitter quite recently but are not exactly new to the Edmonton community as a bunch of local Twitter users have been gathering there regularly for trivia nights. There was a lot going on tonight, such as the Oilers game (yay we won in the shootout!) and a ChangeCamp organizing meeting, but we still had a decent turnout of about 20 people. Thanks to the Social Web Meetup folks for dropping by after their event.


I know I’m missing a couple people, but here is who attended tonight: @britl, @DuncanKinney, @agrabia, @Kiri_W, @LauraSem, @GuitarKat, @VeryAngryBeaver, @wunderbar, @murdawk, @ickleCarlykins, @kevin_bigelow, @TheSpinDoctor, @wburris, @alainsaffel, @dibegin, @chrislabossiere, @fusedlogic, @eadnams, @GenoaK, @mastermaq

Again a great mix of new and familiar faces!

Stay tuned to the wiki and @edmontontweetup for updates on our next event!

Recap: Twestival Local 2009 in Edmonton

Tonight we held Twestival Local in Edmonton, a tweetup to raise money for the Youth Emergency Shelter Society. It was great to see a mix of new and familiar faces come out! In all I think we had about 30 people attend, a little less than our last Twestival but still pretty good!

As you probably know, the local community decided in an online vote that YESS would be our cause for this Twestival (each city got to pick a local cause to support). While we didn’t decide specifically what the money raised would go toward, YESS is about to launch a new facility called the Armoury Youth Centre, and that kind of thing doesn’t happen for free! I’m happy to report that we raised $565 tonight for YESS – well done everyone!

Twestival Local 2009Twestival Local 2009

You can see the rest of my photos from the evening here. Shout out to @GregWalker, @thalegion, and @JonProject for taking most of them!

Twestival Local 2009Twestival Local 2009

We’re thinking our next tweetup might be in October, so stay tuned! Thanks to everyone who came out tonight to support YESS.

Twestival Local 2009 – September 10th in Edmonton

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, we’re holding Twestival Local here in Edmonton next week (get your tickets here). After an online vote, it was decided that the local cause we’ll be supporting is the Youth Emergency Shelter Society. I’m very excited about this, and they are too! Here’s a brief into to YESS:

In 1978, a group of concerned individuals discovered a gap in our social services system. Essentially, there were no programs in place to assist homeless children between the ages of 16 and 18. In response to this lack of service, the group activated  the Youth Emergency Shelter Society (Y.E.S.S.) in September 1981, offering services in a reclaimed fire hall building on Whyte Avenue.

In 2004, based on extensive research into the challenges and issues faced by homeless youth in our community, Y.E.S.S. conducted a major  restructuring  of  all  programs. We  are  now  serving  youth  at risk more efficiently and effectively than ever!

And a little on why they need our help:

YESS relies on fundraising for more than 50% of our budget each year. We face the ongoing challenge of raising more money to provide services to Edmonton’s growing population of troubled teens. You are a critical part of our ability to continue to develop our programs.

For more, check out their Summer 2009 “Eye on Youth” newsletter in PDF.

Very soon, YESS is opening a new facility called the Armoury Youth Centre. They responded to the City’s RFP for the Connaught Armoury space just north of Whyte Avenue and were chosen as the organization whose proposed program would have the greatest positive impact on the community.

A couple weeks after Twestival, you can check out the new Armoury Youth Centre for yourself! Here are the details:

September 26 & 27

Pancake Breakfast from 8am to 10:30am
Tours from 9am to 4:30pm
Afternoon BBQ!

10310 85 Avenue
Edmonton, AB

You can download the grand opening invite in PDF here.

Twestival Local takes place on Thursday. Here are the details:

WHAT: Twestival Local 2009
WHEN: Thursday, September 10, 2009 at 6:00pm
WHERE: Original Joe’s Varsity Row, 8404 109 Street, Edmonton, AB (map)
WHY: To support the Youth Emergency Shelter Society

We’re asking for a minimum donation of $20, but feel free to donate more! You can get tickets online here. Please spread the word!

See you there!

Twestival Local 2009 in Edmonton

Back in February, the Edmonton Twitter community participated in the first ever Twestival – a tweetup for charity. We raised over $1000 for charity:water, and we had a great time doing so! As a great a cause as that was, I would have preferred to support something local. That’s why I am excited about Twestival Local:

Twestival was born out of the idea that if cities are able to collaborate on an international scale, but work from a local level, it would result in a spectacular impact. While Twestival Global put the spotlight around one cause, Twestival Local is encouraging cities around the world to host events in support of a local cause.

The goal is to give people a chance to feel they are contributing to a larger social initiative, but bring the cause a little closer to home.

So basically Twestival is back, and we’re supporting a local cause this time! Which one? We don’t know – we need your help to decide! You can vote online here.

We’re going to hold our Twestival on September 10, 2009. We haven’t yet decided on a venue, so please add your suggestions for that and anything else to the wiki. Watch @edmontontweetup and the Twestival Edmonton blog for updates.

Recap: EdmontonTweetup5

Tonight was our fifth “official” tweetup, hosted by iNews880! About 35 people or so descended on the Corus studios for free hamburgers and hotdogs. Our first tweetup was technically a family-friendly one (at Three Bananas) but there weren’t many locals on Twitter back then – today was a great opportunity to bring the kids, and many people did! It seemed like a long time since our last tweetup, so it was good to see everyone again.

We got the opportunity to tour the building, led by @britl, @Korinda, @NixonK, and @TheSpinDoctor. Kinda neat to see the behind-the-scenes. The cafeteria was decorated with lots of iNews880 banners, and even more little blue Twitter birds! There were dozens! Very festive. And of course, there was food and drinks. That’s really all you need to make a group of people happy 🙂


Here are a few select tweets from tonight:

I had a good time at the tweetup and I think everyone else did too. Thanks to iNews880 for hosting us and to @britl and her team for organizing! Can’t wait until the next one! Stay tuned to the wiki for updates.


You can see the rest of my photos here.

Recap: Edmonton Photography Tweetup 1

The first Photography Tweetup here in Edmonton was held tonight at Red Robin downtown, organized by @TonyRatcliffe and @bruceclarke – thanks guys! The idea was simple – an opportunity for any local Twitter users interested in photography to get together to meet one another, share tips and resources, etc. About 20 people showed up, a really great turnout!

Edmonton Photography Tweetup

We went around the table and did introductions, and then enjoyed lots of chatter over food and drinks. Near the end of the tweetup, @TonyRatcliffe led a discussion about what the group hoped to achieve and what future events should look like. Everyone was there to learn, basically!

The next Photography Tweetup will be on May 12th, at 6:30pm at Ezio Farone Park (roughly 109th Street and 97th Avenue, just before you head south over the High Level Bridge). Keep an eye on the wiki and the #yegphoto hashtag for more information.

I love events like this. There were people who came out tonight who haven’t been to any of the other tweetups, or to any of the other tech events for that matter (DemoCamp, Social Web Meetup, etc). It’s a great opportunity for them to get introduced to everything that is going on Edmonton, in tech and beyond.

With that in mind, check out Edmonton FlickrMeets, a group of local Flickr users. They too have regularly scheduled photography meetups for anyone interested!

I posted a few more photos and short video here.

Recap: EdmontonTweetup4

Our fourth “official” meetup for Twitter users in the Edmonton area was a success! About 45 people stopped by Vintage Lounge this evening. The team at Vintage deserve major thanks for handling everything so smoothly, as we had many more people show up than was guesstimated a week or two ago.

Actually, I was quite impressed with the turnout. We had about the same number as Twestival back in February, but in comparison did little or no marketing. There were certainly no front page stories in the local newspapers for tonight’s event! Once again, there was a nice mix of new and familiar faces.


It looked like lots of orders of Mini Burgers came out from the kitchen. I ordered the Italian Sausage Macaroni for dinner, and thoroughly enjoyed it. The food menu at Vintage isn’t extensive, but it is good. Worth checking out.

Here are a few select tweets about tonight’s event:

  • @rlesueur: Tonight attended first #yegtweetup. Good evening, good people. I’ll be back!
  • @bruceclarke: Nice seeing everyone and meeting some new people at tonight’s #yegtweetup.
  • @alexismac: Had more fun at #yegtweetup than anticipated. Damn – now I have to go the next one.
  • @chrislabossiere: That was a great #yegTweetup thanks @alexismac for the wine, I owe you.
  • @thechadj: So extremely tired. #yegtweetup proves to be too much! Good times!
  • @ammneh: Ok that was fun! #yeg #tweetup
  • @ink_slinger: #yegtweetup was pretty good. Still going strong, but I’m heading out now.

Coming up next week is the NHL Tweetup, taking place at the same time and place as Techwing Wednesday, so it should be a big, diverse crowd. As always, check out the EdmontonTweetup wiki for other upcoming tweetups or to plan your own!

Thanks to everyone who came out tonight – sorry if I didn’t get a chance to chat with you! A partial list of attendees is up on the wiki, so feel free to add yourself.

See you at EdmontonTweetup5!

EdmontonTweetup4 – April 7th

It’s time for another tweetup! Though it has been nearly six months since EdmontonTweetup3, there have been many other events since then, including Twestival. It’s great to see the community using the wiki to organize tweetups of all kinds! Still, it’s nice to have an “official” tweetup every now and then.

Join us a week from now for EdmontonTweetup4:

WHO: Twitterers and the Twitter-curious in Edmonton and area!
WHAT: An event to meet one another in person.
WHERE: Vintage Lounge, 10124 124th Street (map)
WHEN: Tuesday, April 7th, 2009 at 6:30pm
WHY: Because you’ll have a great time and will meet fascinating people!

Thanks to Brittney (@britl) for helping me get this going. You can follow the @edmontontweetup account for updates.

There are almost 30 people registered on the wiki already! You don’t have to add your name there, but it does help us if we know roughly how many people are attending. You’re welcome to simply drop by though!

If you’re new to Twitter, you might want to read this article I wrote for Connect2Edmonton.

See you there!