Message to Attendees of TEDxColumbus: Out There

Let the countdown to TEDxColumbus begin! ┬áHere’s the main information you’ll need to know (and some we need to know too).

Dietary issues: We will have plenty of vegetarian food options, but please let us know if you requrie a gluten-free or dairy-free meal. If you have not already, please email us at with GF or DF, or other variations as needed. (Note: The one thing we don’t provide is soda; you may purchase it at the COSI cafe or bring some with you. Coffee and water are provided throughout the day.)

Cancellations/ Transfers: if you know you cannot attend now, please let us know ASAP. We are sold out and have a waiting list and would love to accommodate those that want to / can attend. We will issue full refunds through Tuesday, October 9. After Tuesday, you may transfer your ticket to another person by giving them your e-ticket and having them request your name badge. We will then do an on-site transfer and produce a new badge for you at registration.

How to prepare and get there: Dress casually. Eat a little something before you come, but we will feed you amply throughout the day. Then take the quickest route to COSI! Parking will be free in the lots at 333 West Broad Street. Registration opens at 8am; plan to arrive by 8:30am so you won’t miss the 9am start.

When you get there: You will be greeted at registration where you will get your name badge, and then invited into the new coffee tasting provided by Crimson Cup in the Atrium. We will open the doors to the gallery upstairs (level 2) at about 8:50am. Seating is not reserved and is on a first-come, first-serve basis.

The day: We will have four sessions and three breaks (all with food). The stage content will end about 4pm. We will be hosting a Spirit of Columbus happy hour (cash bar) afterwards until about 530pm. Please plan to stay for a drink and to enjoy music from our performers.

Do you need cash? We will take credit cards if you want to buy a book or have a t-shirt screen printed, but our bar will only take cash. Otherwise, you need no currency except your brain power!

Now, for first Time TEDxColumbus Attendees, a 3-2-1 guide to what to expect:

Here are 3 things that you may be expecting, but that you WON’T find:

Tables. Whether you arrive solo or with a group, you will sit amongst the gallery audience where no seats (except for speakers) are reserved and, after each break, you’ll be encouraged to change seats to gain different perspectives throughout the day.

A trade show. We have amazing partners and sponsors, but it is not in the TEDx tradition to have them “sell” to you. They are there because they support the concept behind TED and TEDx, not because they will get to put something in your hands. Indeed, there may be some spontaneous networking, but there is no selling from the stage or off.

Quiet time. Introverts may be particularly tired by the end of the day, but we encourage you to stick with it and stretch yourself. The talks will bend your mind and the conversation may feel unusually freeflowing, and let it be so.

Here are 2 things we hope you will bring:

A totally open mind. Don’t come with an agenda and, in return, you will get immeasurable knowledge, inspiration and provocation.

A willingness to sit next to, or engage in a conversation, with strangers. Though, none of us are really strangers. We are (mostly) all from Columbus. We are curious and want to be engaged. There is a common denominator that binds us, even if not readily apparent.

And our one request:

This event is sold out. There are people who want to be there but can’t be there. So if someone asks you why you came and, in fact you were sent by your boss or otherwise are attending under some obligation, go ahead and share that–“I was told to come.” But don’t forget to add–“I got lucky.” And, should you find you can’t say that with honesty, please consider releasing your ticket to someone else. We’ve worked hard to make this an incredible event, but from experience we know that the success of each TEDxColumbus is the result of what each and every person there brings to it.

Thank you. As always, let us know if you have any questions.
We look forward to seeing you in a week!
TEDxColumbus Organizing Team