At TEDx events around the globe, teams are finding great ways to get people out of their seats and into the outdoors. Below, three of our favorite outdoor innovations — from picnicking with handmade blankets to chilling out on outdoor beanbags:
TEDxRochester’s live spraypaint art
At TEDxRochester in chilly upstate New York, the outdoors is often not a welcoming place — especially in November when they hold their event. But at the TEDxRochester 2013 event, the team invited local artist, Mr. Prvrt, to create a giant art piece live as the event went on. The team built a frame and “canvas” out of wood, and within hours, the boards became art. The artistic activity got attendees outside and helped to promote the arts scene in the city.
Picnicking + parachutes at TEDxLaçador
“Our TEDx event went far beyond the theater of the University. We invaded the hall, the sidewalks and even the campus lawn,” says Ana Goelzer, organizer of TEDxLaçador in Brazil. For lunch, Goelzer and her team invited attendees to picnic in the shade of the the trees lining the green campus of the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio Grande do Sul, the event’s venue. Attendees were invited to break off into groups of six and camp out with picnic “tablecloths” — made of recycled materials and hand-sewn by the mother of a speaker of a previous TEDxLaçador event.
During breaks, attendees were invited back outside to bond over play with a giant parachute, playing games guided by volunteers from Quinta da Estância, an eco-education center dedicated to teaching the community about environmental issues and the protection of local habitats and animals.
TEDxChristchurch’s Chill-Out Zone
TEDxChristchurch in New Zealand utilized the beautiful space outside their venue to create what they called “The Chill-Out Zone.” This corner of their outdoor space made for a more relaxed environment area for attendees to enjoy the event (a little more music festival than conference). The Zone had a livestream of the event, beanbags, power stations for charging devices, coffee bars run by local baristas, a bookstore, and tech demos, just to name a few things.