Recap: Edmonton Twestival 2009

Wow, what a fantastic evening! Thanks to everyone who came out tonight, and to everyone who supported Twestival. I think it’s really cool that the Edmonton community was able to participate and help make a difference for those in the world who don’t have access to safe, clean drinking water.

Our hope was to have around 50 people attend this evening, and we came very close – the final tally was 45. Everyone donated $20, which means we raised at least $900 from ticket sales. I know at least another $100 was donated online via tipjoy, so that brings us to $1000 raised for charity: water. Well done everyone!


Photos by momentsindigital (site)

Thanks once again to everyone who donated the door prizes: @sassycakes, @transcendcoffee, @bruceclarke, @NAIT, @thechadj, @Out_Inc, @cmscritic, and @tonyratcliffe. Thanks also to @sharonyeo for doing a ton of work to make tonight happen!

I’ve posted a few photos and a video here, @bruceclarke posted some much better ones here, and @tonyratcliffe posted his photos here. If you know of any others, please let me know! If you’re feeling adventurous, you can read some of tonight’s chatter at Twitter Search.

I can’t wait to hear how Twestival went in other cities – there should be lots of exciting news over the next few days. Keep an eye on @twestival for updates.

Our next Twitter event here in Edmonton will be EdmontonTweetup4. See you there!

UPDATE: We raised at least $1000 but because of the online donations and other ways to help out, our total raised may end up being higher than that. I’ll update again when I know the official numbers.

Two days until Edmonton Twestival 2009

In less than 48 hours, Edmonton Twestival 2009 will be underway! I’m really looking forward to the event and I hope you are too.

One of the things we wanted to do with Twestival was showcase local organizations on Twitter. Fortunately, quite a few have stepped up to contribute door prizes! Thanks to:

Want a shot at winning one of these fantastic prizes? You must register online! If you’re not comfortable entering your credit card online, register for the free ticket and bring your donation to the event.

I also wanted to thank the Calgary Twestival crew for getting an Alberta Twestival logo created:

Very cool! Here are a couple of other things created for Twestival recently:

  • Donation Water Cloud – Donate and get your name on the cloud! The most generous donors will appear on the official Twestival t-shirt.
  • Official T-Shirt – You can order the shirt until Monday, February 16th. I love the design!
  • Twestival.fm – What’s a festival without music? Donate and tweet your favorite tunes.

I’ll be posting updates on both @mastermaq and @edmontontweetup as we get closer to show time. You can also check out the #twestival hashtag on Twitter Search.

Hope to see you on Thursday evening!

UPDATE: We made the front page of the Edmonton Journal today! You can read the article online here.

Twestival Edmonton – February 12th, 2009

I’m excited to announce the latest Twitter event taking place in Edmonton: Twestival 2009! More than 100 cities around the world are hosting Twestivals on February 12th to raise money and awareness for charity: water. When I heard about the idea, I knew that Edmonton had to participate. After all, we’re known for our support of community and charitable causes, and the Twitter community here is second-to-none! It’s going to be an evening of great fun for a great cause!

Here are the details:

WHO: You and your friends!
WHAT: Edmonton Twestival 2009
WHEN: Thursday, February 12th at 6:30pm
WHERE: Vintage Lounge, 10124 124th Street – map
WHY: To have some fun while supporting a great cause!
COST: We’re asking for a $20 donation which will go entirely to charity: water.

Click here to register for the event. If at all possible, please use the donate online option when you book your ticket as that’ll simplify things for us.

Here’s a bit more information on Twestival:

The Twestival is organized 100% by volunteers in cities around the world and 100% of the money raised from these events will go directly to support charity: water projects. Unsafe water and lack of basic sanitation cause 80% of all sickness and disease, and kill more people every year than all forms of violence, including war. By rallying together globally, under short timescales, for a single aim on the same day, the Twestival hopes to bring awareness to this global crisis.

Needless to say, I think it’s a cause worth supporting. The cost of funding a well project in a developing country starts at $4,000 USD. Together with our friends in Calgary, I think Alberta can definitely raise enough to fund an entire well!

Some cities have organized elaborate programs for their Twestival, which is cool. Here in Edmonton, we thought it would be better to keep things simple. Here’s what we’ve got planned:

  • Come anytime after 6:30pm to Vintage Lounge. If you’ve registered online, we’ll have a special nametag waiting for you. Meet people who are new to you, and reconnect with people you already know. Put faces and real names to Twitter usernames!
  • Also if you’ve registered online, you’ll have a shot at winning one of our door prizes! We wanted to highlight local organizations on Twitter, so have asked a few for donations. Our first supporter is SassyCakes! Let me know if you’d like to donate something.
  • Connect to the free wireless provided by Vintage Lounge and chat with Twestival-goers in other cities. We’ll have a screen setup thanking our supporters, and showing real-time Twestival chat from around the world!
  • Feel free to bring friends who are currently missing out on Twitter – we’ll get them registered on the spot!

Beyond that, let’s just have a good time and raise some money for charity: water!

If you’re interested in sponsoring the event, or donating a door prize, or otherwise helping out, please let me know. Stay tuned to the wiki and the @edmontontweetup account for news and updates.

Major thanks to Sharon (@sharonyeo) for helping me get this off the ground, and to everyone else who has provided input and support so far (@dibegin, @Roger, @amanda etc.)

See you there!

UPDATE: Here is charity: water’s official Twestival page.

Recap: EdmontonTweetup3

edmontontweetup I had a great time tonight at EdmontonTweetup3 – our third meetup for Twitter users in the Edmonton area! We had just over 20 people come out to Devlin’s on Whyte Avenue, with a nice mixture of familiar and new faces! I thought the restaurant did a nice job of accommodating our group, and it was good to hear so many people say they’d never been there before. We might as well experience a bit more of the city at these events!

I only snapped a few simple shots tonight, but @bruceclarke, @tonyratcliffe, and @fusedlogic all took nice sets of photos: here and here and here. Thanks guys!

EdmontonTweetup3

As our community continues to grow, I think there will be increasing demand for these face-to-face meetups. It’s nice to be able to get away from the computer for a few minutes to meet the people you chat with on a daily basis!

Once again I’ve done my best to add all of tonight’s attendees to the wiki page, but please add yourself if I missed you. Feel free to add links to your photos, blog posts, and other bits of social media too.

Thanks again to everyone who came out tonight – see you at EdmontonTweetup4!

Edmonton Organizations on Twitter

edmontontweetup I’m not the only one who has noticed it – the number of Edmontonians using Twitter is steadily increasing. The EdmontonTweetup account is following just over 450 people, but I know there are probably many more. The vast majority of these accounts are individuals, but there are some businesses and other organizations also.

Here’s a list of organizations with official Twitter accounts (in no particular order):

A few of these are placeholders and aren’t very active. You might think that the Edmonton Oilers should be on that list too, but the Oilers don’t run the Twitter account – I do. A couple of others I’m sitting on include edmonton and ualberta.

Of course, there are also a number of organizations that don’t have an official account which are represented by their owners and/or employees. Some of these have the same name as the organization, but are used more like personal accounts so I am including them here instead of above (again, in no particular order):

Not surprisingly, most of these organizations are in tech, photography, or design. All very creative endeavors.

The problem with a list like this is that it’s easy to miss people (apologies if I missed you), and it’ll soon be out of date. That’s why I’ve created a page on the EdmontonTweetup wiki for it. I’m not sure how much value there is in having such a list, but it’s there anyway. Feel free to add your organization to it, or to ignore it completely! I’ll try to update it when I can.

Don’t forget – the third EdmontonTweetup is taking place this Thursday (October 30th) at 6pm at Devlin’s on Whyte Avenue. You can find all the details here. Hope to see you there!

UPDATE: Added MatrikonOPC, 350 Designs, and Urban Jungle.

EdmontonTweetup3 – October 30th

EdmontonTweetup

The Twitter community here in Edmonton continues to amaze me. New users sign up every day, and existing users do a good job of following one another. As a result, there are really interesting discussions taking place all the time. Quite a few people have adopted the #yeg hashtag too, making it even easier to find Edmonton-related items on Twitter.

A tweetup is an opportunity to strengthen those online relationships and perhaps forge new ones offline. Or if you’re new to Twitter, it’s a great way to come and find out what all the fuss is about. Some people will undoubtedly talk about tech at the event, but for the most part it’s a non-geeky get-together. Join us for some food, drinks, and good discussion. Here are the details on EdmontonTweetup3:

WHO: Twitterers and the Twitter-curious in Edmonton and area!
WHAT: An event to meet one another in person.
WHERE: Devlin’s Cocktail Lounge on Whyte Avenue (map)
WHEN: Thursday, October 30th, 2008 at 6:00pm
WHY: Because you need to get off the computer once in a while!

I hope you can make it out! If you’re planning to attend, please add your name to the wiki page so that we have an idea of how many people to expect. Follow edmontontweetup and/or myself on Twitter for updates.

See you there!

Recap: EdmontonTweetup2

Tonight we held our second tweetup here in Edmonton. Our last tweetup was held during the day on a Saturday, so I expected that we’d have a different audience out this time and for the most part we did. Of the 18 or 19 people that came tonight, I would guess that only 5 or 6 of us were at the first tweetup. To me that’s great, because it gets new people involved and illustrates that the Twitter community in Edmonton is quite big! Hopefully we’ll have a tweetup one day that everyone can make it to.

I only took a couple photos tonight, but @bruceclarke took quite a few shots with his fancy camera! You can see them in the Edmonton Tweetup set. Thanks Bruce!

EdmontonTweetup2

The venue was The Billiard Club on Whyte Avenue, which worked really well. We made our way to the patio in the back to soak up the sunny, thirty degree weather. There was no wifi access, but that didn’t stop us from having some really interesting and lively discussions!

It’s always great to be able to put a face to the username and chat with some of the most interesting people in the city. That’s what I love about the tweetups, and that’s why I think we’ll continue to have them every now and then.

I’ve added as many of the attendees as I can remember to the wiki page, but if I missed you, please feel free to add your username. Also add your links to blog posts and photos, etc. I’ve also created a page for our next tweetup, so if you have ideas, post them!

Thanks to everyone who came out tonight!

EdmontonTweetup2 – August 14th

Next week we’ll be having our second tweetup here in Edmonton. It’s a great way to meet other Twitter users from Edmonton and area – there’s quite a few of us already and the number keeps growing! The event is fairly informal and relaxed, the goal is just to have some fun meeting new people! You can read about our first tweetup here. Hard to believe it’s been three months already!

It’s always a challenge to find a date and time and venue that everyone can make it out to, so we’re trying something different this time. Here are the details:

WHO: Twitter users in Edmonton!
WHAT: An event to meet one another in meatspace.
WHERE: The Billiard Club on Whyte Avenue (map)
WHEN: Thursday, August 14th, 2008 at 6:00pm
WHY: To chat about anything with other Twitter users!

If you’re planning to come out on Thursday, add your name to the list on our wiki. You may also want to follow edmontontweetup and/or myself on Twitter for updates.

See you there!

Banff Day 2

Faced with the prospect of $24 for the day for parking or walking for an hour in the rain, I decided this morning to make my way to the Fairmont Banff Springs on the Roam bus. I didn’t know this, but as of June 2nd, Banff is home to Canada’s first all-hybrid bus fleet. Adult fare is $2, and the ride from my hotel on one end of Banff Avenue to the Fairmont on the other was only about 15 minutes.

The first day of the conference went very well, though the wireless was pretty crappy. As more and more people got out their laptops and connected, the speed and reliability of the wifi plummeted. On more than one occasion I crossed my fingers as I pressed the “Publish” button.

You can read all of my nextMEDIA 2008 coverage at Techvibes.

This evening the weather was much nicer, so I walked from the Fairmont back to downtown. The sidewalks are all extremely wide, which I guess is no surprise given that Banff is a major tourist town. I walked the rest of the way back to my hotel tonight too.

Banff Bus nextMEDIA Jeff Barr & Kurt Kratchman Banff Banff The Underground Studio

Tomorrow is going to be just as packed as today, but I’m excited. There are a few sessions tomorrow that look quite interesting, and I’m trying to get a mini-tweetup going. I love meeting fellow Twitter users!

As promised, I’ve written a review of Timbers, the Italian restaurant I ate at last night. You can read it at Only Here for the Food.

EdmontonTweetup1 was a success!

edmontontweetup Today we held the first ever tweetup in Edmonton (a meetup for Twitter users) and I think it’s safe to say that it was a success! We met downtown at three bananas cafe in Churchill Square at around noon. I wasn’t sure how many people would come, and was a little worried when I received a bunch of “sorry, can’t make it” messages this morning. In the end though, the attendance was much better than I could have expected, considering Twitter is still fairly niche. We had 17 people, including myself. You can see the full list of attendees on our wiki page.

Some of us took photos, Greg took some video, and Ian even did a podcast! You can find links to everything on the wiki (please add to the list).

EdmontonTweetup

We didn’t have a formal agenda, but that didn’t matter much. As I suspected, everyone found things to chat about. Connections were made and everyone seemed to be having a good time! There was some Twitter-related talk, mainly around apps and how people use Twitter. I talked about the “track” feature and also hashtags. It seems that most people have really gotten into Twitter in just the last few months.

Three Bananas was a great venue, very bright with reliable wifi. Today was a lovely day too, which made it even better.

I think we’ll probably have another tweetup, I’m just not sure when. You can help us plan it by contributing to the wiki page for EdmontonTweetup2.

Thanks to everyone who came – it was great to meet you! And to everyone who wanted to come but couldn’t, we’ll see you at the next one!