The 200Columbus Bicentennial Celebration is already in full swing, but the party is going to be kicked into overdrive come September. That’s when idUS — an 11-day collection of events celebrating innovation and design — takes place.
Back in February, the city of Columbus celebrated its official birthday while honoring the past with a series of history-centric events. This summer, a current-day celebration will revolve around an enhanced Red White & Boom and the new Ohio Homecoming festival. Between September 28th and October 8th, idUS will look toward the future with a visionary series of events.
“In discussions about the third part of the year, it became obvious that Columbus is a place with incredible innovative and creative people and organizations,” said Jamie Greene, Program Manager of 200Columbus and Principal at ACP Visioning+Planning.
The 200Columbus event planning committee recognized the importance of the upcoming EcoSummit program and started working with other collaborators to put together a robust collection of thematic events surrounding that same time frame.
“One of the mantras of 200Columbus is ‘leverage’ and the EcoSummit seemed like a good place to start,” said Greene. “We also knew that the first year would be difficult to program from scratch, and this started our quest to find collaborators. On that point, we have been successful way beyond our expectations, providing more proof about the amazing collaborative spirit that exists in this community.”
Some of the signature idUS programming will include an immersive weekend-long exhibition party called idUS Space, and a series of interactive workshops called Collaboration Laboratories (CoLabs for short). An additional array of existing events will occur throughout the timeframe of idUS and will be produced by individual event collaborators.
“These collaborators, including TEDxColumbus, Innovate Columbus, CCAD, The Wexner Center, Design Week, MORPC’s Summit on Sustainability, The Columbus Idea Foundry, EcoSummit and the new film festival FFOCOL, are all active contributors to the overall construction of idUS and will contribute in various ways to the content of both the idUS Space and the CoLabs,” said Shannon Morrison, Creative Director for idUS, and Creative Director at IM Creative.
Much of the programming and collaboration revolves around the “Creative Class”, a term defined by economist Richard Florida that describes the socioeconomic class of people who’s primary job is to be creative or innovative. That can include architects, designers, artists, musicians, scientists, engineers and beyond.
“idUS will portray the broad creativity that exists in the community, but it seems clear that the Creative Class will be central to our content and participation,” said Greene. “In addition, we are working hard to have major idUS programming in East Franklinton as the Creative District Plan there will be promoted during idUS.”
Greene sees idUS not only continuing beyond 2012 as an annual event, but growing to the point of being a nationally recognized festival.
“We have the goods to authentically own innovation and creativity for one week of the year,” he said. “If you need a comparison, you could think that in five to 10 years, idUS could be to Columbus’s image what SXSW means to Austin’s.”
“Innovation and design come in many shapes and sizes, and we’re very excited to help illustrate that diversity through idUS,” added Morrison.
More information can be found online at www.idUS.us.