Just Another Road? Or a Real Connection.

pageextensionfrommarysbackyardOne great thing about the St. Louis area is the number of communities, each with their own particular flavor, that surround the city. Whether you live in Brentwood, Maryland Heights, University City, Lemay or further west across the river like I do, each of these individual little municipalities have a little something that’s unique about it.  Yet regardless of which one you live in, pretty much everyone still refers to themselves as a St. Louisan, or as living in the St. Louis metro area.

Living in “the Lou” as we lovingly call it, you can bet that in any given year there is road construction going on somewhere.  We have a love-hate relationship with it. On one hand, it’s a pain in the ass that gets in the way of trying to get somewhere … but on the other hand, once it’s completed it’s a transportation gift that makes life easier. Read more

A Talk Opens Doors

Deanna Kuhlmann-LeavittLast spring Deanna Kuhlmann-Leavitt spoke at TEDxGatewayArch about The New, New.  She talked of the value found in giving something old a new life, particularly the downtown St. Louis Library, the building now home to her studio, and an unused plot of land in the Central West End.  Deanna played a role in the rebirth of each location and shared her insight. You can watch her TEDx Talk in its entirety on YouTube.

Recently we caught back up with Deanna to see what she’s been up to since last spring. We were surprised to learn her TEDx Talk was not only a chance to impart knowledge on the audience, but an opportunity to make a connection that would help her answer some questions about the history of her studio on Pershing Avenue! Read more

DJ Scandalous

DJ-Scandalous1Remember DJ Scandalous and his performance of “This is the Time,” the original song he created specifically for TEDx at our January event?

We caught up with him recently to talk about his TEDx experience, our great city of St. Louis and what he’s been up to. DJ Scandalous fondly refers to pulling off his performance in our fair city as an “interesting process.”  When asked to write a song promoting TED, he took to the studio to create. During the writing process he used electronic keyboards and computers to mimic other instruments, and also in this case, a choir. Read more

Painting for Peace

20141203_110841ST. LOUIS — On a recent cold Wednesday night, more than 40 artists from all walks of life gathered at Cafe Natasha and Gin Room, a restaurant located on South Grand, to celebrate the efforts made helping to beautify businesses on South Grand and in Ferguson.

For Natasha Bahrami, owner of the self-named Persian restaurant, it was a small gesture of gratitude for the altruists who used their artistic talents to help heal communities still reeling from the aftermath of the Ferguson grand jury decision. Read more

Energized by My First TEDx Adventure

Steve SommersTEDx has started a new activity that brings a community closer to the “ideas worth spreading.”  The concept, called TEDx Adventures, is an initiative that invites TEDx organizers to put ideas into action through curated activities before or after a major TEDx event.  Adventures can be led by TEDx organizers, team members, speakers, or community members and are meant to bring TEDx’ers into their community to explore ideas and start discussions. Small groups visit TEDx speakers at their work/design space to get a deep dive on a subject or area of study.  The group visits can also extend to interesting places in the community (historical, architectural, innovative or timely) that set the stage for creative discussions. Read more

Dan Parris Inspires Us through Film to Turn Ideas into Action

DanParrisWhen Dan Parris wrote his bio in preparation for speaking at a TEDx Gateway Arch event, he described himself as an “idealistic activist.”

So what in the world is an “idealistic activist?”

“I was trying to convey my mindset that, yes, I’m one of those crazy, naïve millennials who actually thinks they can change the world,” Parris says. Read more

Why I’m Excited for TEDxArch: Show Me Design

We asked our team members why they were excited for the upcoming St. Louis Design Week event, Show Me Design, and this is what they said:

casey-epley-150x150Casey Epley, Exhibitor & Volunteer Manager of TEDxGatewayArch

“Most excited about: have you seen the list of exhibitors?!?! There is going to be so much to look at, I am making space in my brain right now to take it all in.”



Read more

The Magic of TED


When I attended my first TED conference in 2003, it was kind of like being in junior high … I was intimidated. It was an invitation-only, amazing conference of top thinkers from technology, entertainment, and design. The talent and passion on stage and in the audience was overwhelming … and it was the most thrilling thing I’d ever done professionally. I had never been in a place where people were so open, positive, smart and accomplished, yet everyone in attendance seemed to be humbled by each other. Read more

Why Do You Like St. Louis?


Photo Credit: Data Tech Lab

From my perspective, St. Louisians generally fall into three buckets—born-bred-stayed (BBS), born-moved-long to return (BML), and unsuspecting* happy transplants (UHT.)

I’m a BBS. For years, I thought I’d become a BML, but then life happened. Married a BBS and became more entrenched. Over a life span (so far), I’ve watched the St. Louis community evolve: Read more

Columbus & Discovery

col-smallEarlier today I arrived back from Ohio, where I attended a TEDx event. Last month it was a different state and a different City’s TEDx event. On each occasion I was one of the first guests to arrive and the last to leave, asking many questions of the organizers. While admitting to be a TED-head, this is not normal behavior.

A Tedx is, by its very nature, built by a community of people from a distinct geographic area. Those are the two main influences on the quality, feel and strength of each organization and the effect they can have. My recent travels were aimed at determining what other, more established, TEDx groups are doing, and to bring those lessons back to St. Louis. Here are a few things that I discovered: Read more