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Growing a Creative Community

Wednesday May 22, 2013









A collection of Kansas City’s most creative, innovative and inspiring people gathered for the second annual Middle of the Map Fest Forum. From April 17-19, the community gathered to hear speakers and engage with an interactive panel at OfficePort and StagePort in the Crossroads. The open dialogue and exchange of ideas from the wide variety of speakers and panels were inspiring.

"It was great to tap into the eclectic and amazing community that is Kansas City. I was inspired as an artist, entrepreneur, technologist and citizen. Everyone should go,” said Wayne Kaufmanschmidt, attendee.

The keynote speaker lineup included John McDonald, Adam Jones, Jeff Centimano, Stephen Kingsmore, Sandy Kemper and Robb Heineman. Interactive panels encompassed a wide range of topics: education, wellness, business, social connectivity, community and design. Panelists included citizens who are integral to the Kansas City community. From big names like KCMO Mayor Sly James and KCAI President Jacqueline Chanda – to lesser-known (but equally interesting) individuals including local business owners, activists and artists.

Amidst the daily lineup of speakers, attendees had a chance to interact with the mobank poet, who was there to observe and collect common phrases throughout the day to later compile into a collaborative poem. Forum participants were encouraged to interact with four writing stations, each supplying a writing prompt.

  • A typewriter: If I could construct a culture…
  • A chalkboard: If I could manufacture a neighborhood…
  • Ink and quill: If I could fashion a family…
  • Twitter: If I could build a world…

A three-part poem was presented in its entirety at Connect, the Middle of the Map Fest Forum after-party, hosted at the Missouri Bank Crossroads branch. Watch it here.

"Being the presenting sponsor of this event gave us a great opportunity to connect with our customers, community and friends. This specific type of event brings out those who are wired a little differently, just like we are at mobank," said George Satterlee, executive vice president/chief administrative officer of mobank.

Attendees were encouraged to engage during the Forums via social media, using the hashtag #MOTMKC. Read what people were saying below:

“Support of local artists by local businesses lives into creativity, originality, and thinking local. #motmkc” @kaufmanschmidt

“Kicking off @motmfest forum. "It's the energy of a kitchen at a party." Excited to be here for @summitsocial! #motmkc” @jasonfharper

“Enjoying #motmkc this morning w talks from John McDonald and Adam Jones. @rippleglass @Boulevard_Beer” @AllisonThinkBig

“Being connected digitally is not enough KC, we need to be connected in other ways - physical space, business channels, community #Motmkc” @kaufmanschmidt

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