TEDFest 2018 Pre-Event

TEDFest 2018 Pre-Event

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Spaces NYC Co-Work

1740 Broadway (at 55th Street)

New York, NY 10019

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Refunds up to 7 days before event


There just isn't enough time to meet all the other participants during TEDFest and other TED events! A lot of the time is taken up with the great talks, and organised activities - and the big networking parties are both intense and noisy. We aim to offer more social time in a relaxed environment.

In November 2017 we approached TED about the idea of organising a pre-event in New York before TEDFest, and TED agreed. This project was originally set up by Richard Lucas of TEDxKazimierz (Poland) and Aaron Sylvan of TEDxFultonStreet (NYC). If you want to help with the event, please sign up here.

The goal of this event is to build more community among participants, and when you are from out of town -its always great to have a place where you can hang out before things get under way.

A venue has been donated to us, for use all day Monday April 9th (09h00-18h00), and half of Tuesday April 10th (09h00-14h00) in a midtown Manhattan co-working community just south of Central Park.

This is not a an "organiser workshop" in the sense that we require and expect participants to share knowledge and know how in a structured enviroment. Rather, we plan to use parts of the Open Space Technology un-conference format - so you can choose what you do in the space. Each TEDx organiser attending will get her/his table where people can find them. There will be area where presentations can be made, and TED and TEDx talks be shown. If someone is thinking - "they ought to do X" - please come along and organise "X" within the framework of the Pre-Event.

This event will be low budget and high value - with food/drink at cost. The money we charge will pay for chair rental, food and drink and we expect it will be cheaper to eat with us in the space than eat out in New York.

The ticket price does not cover the cost of Monday evening, which will be in a venue called Characters (243 West 54th St., New York, NY — on 54th Street between Broadway and 8th Avenue). There is a $30 min on credit cards, so bringing some cash is advisable. (Beers range from $6-$10, cocktails $8-$11, premium drinks $9+. Burgers, sandwiches, and wraps start at $13, salads start at $10, large menu of casual "pub food".)

If you are interested in helping make this happen, please fill in the form and get in touch and aim to arrive in New York not later than 8th April.

— Richard Lucas (TEDxKazimierz)

Goals and Ideology:

To give those who are taking part in the TEDFest a more relaxed time and space to hang out, talk, listen, get to know each other, and share their ideas.


I've often noticed something missing for those who are attending events when they are from "out of town". The event organisers are busy with their event, speakers and sponsors. Locals do not have an issue to solve, while those who have travelled to the event the day before struggle to find each other, are at a loose end somewhere where they may have few contacts.

I've been organising community led, grassroots initiatives for many years and done pre- events before several TEDx-es and one TED Summit.

2016 TEDxKazimierz Pre-Party www.facebook.com/events/473712449494636
2016 Pre-TEDSummit event in Calgary www.facebook.com/events/547549732081743
2014 Pre-TEDxWarsaw meetup www.facebook.com/events/617031941679532

All these events were done on zero budget (free event spaces connected to venues that welcome extra bar sales).


We respect and embrace TED and TEDx values

This event will be inclusive, tolerant, safe, respectful, fun and well organised.

We will be welcoming to shy and nervous people. If it works for them, it will work for everyone.

We will have a strong "participant focus" - see this article:

Everyone who attends will contribute as best they can. If everyone aims to give more than they get everyone will get more than they give.

We will aim high - We will try to make this the best pre-event ever held, anywhere. This means that even if we only come close - it will be memorable and worthwhile.

There is no "us” and “them” at this event. There is only "us"

There are no “stars”. Everyone is important.

Implicit responsibility. Anyone suggesting an idea or activity as part of the event assumes to take responsibility for trying to make it happen.


There will be total financial and other transparency for this event.

We will aim for cost-minimisation without compromising quality. Any shortfall in funding will be covered by Richard up to $500. The money we charge is for food, drink and chair/projector rental.

We will keep TEDFest team informed every step of the way, and TED staffers are welcome to join.


Special thanks to our venue sponsor for its generous donation!

Special thanks to Spaces, for generously donating the use of its venue!

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