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Providence Geeks – January 21, 2015

Providence Geeks Providence Geeks
Wednesday, January 21, 2015 – 5:30–8pm
AS220, 115 Empire Street, Providence, RI
FREE (buy your own food and drink – it’s cheap)
RSVP at Facebook

Since its founding in 2008, the community engineering and fabrication studio AS220 Labs has become a cornerstone of Providence’s innovation scene. Inside its walls, hundreds of makers and artists of all ages have learnt and expressed themselves with technologies ranging from 3d printing to folk electronics. And it’s about to get even better.

In 2015 AS220 Labs will double its successful Fab Academy class, a “distributed education” program in digital fabrication directed by Neil Gershenfeld of MIT’s Center for Bits and Atoms. In addition, its sister organization — AS220 Media Arts — will build out a highly complementary state-of-the-art media lab right across the hall.

On Wednesday the 21st, Director of AS220 Industries Shawn Wallace will give an update on all of the activity and art coming out of Labs, as well as a sneak peek at the goodness that the next few years have in store.


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Public Zoning Ordinance Training Session – February 3, 2015

The City of Providence Department of Planning and Development invites interested members of the public to attend a zoning training session on Tuesday, February 3rd at 5:00pm at 444 Westminster Street in the first floor cafeteria space.

City staff will provide an overview the general organization of the new Zoning Ordinance and provide guidance on how to use the Use Matrix, Use Standards, and Use Definitions. Changes to the City’s zoning districts, and other hot topic items including parking, trees and landscaping, signs, and site development standards relating to lighting, accessory structures, accessory uses, and encroachments will also be discussed.

Please call 401-680-8400 for more information. No RSVP is required. This event is open to all members of the public.


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PPS Annual Meeting featuring former Pittsburgh Mayor Tom Murphy – January 29, 2015

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Tom Murphy. Photo from ULI.

From the Providence Preservation Society:


PPS Announces January 29 Annual Meeting

Featuring Former Mayor of Pittsburgh TOM MURPHY – Meeting Will Also Highlight Providence Revolving Fund’s 35th Anniversary

Providence, RI (January 9, 2015) – The Providence Preservation Society welcomes Tom Murphy, former Mayor of Pittsburgh and senior resident fellow at the Urban Land Institute, to their 2015 Annual Meeting on Thursday, January 29, 2015, 5:30 pm, at the Providence Public Library. Having leveraged billions of dollars in economic development in Pittsburgh, Mayor Murphy will speak about his experience in urban revitalization. The event will also celebrate the 35th Anniversary of the Providence Revolving Fund, which was formed by the Society’s Board of Trustees in 1980.

“When Mayor Murphy took office in 1994, he built upon Pittsburgh’s existing assets to create a dynamic urban experience,” stated Brent Runyon, Executive Director of the Providence Preservation Society. “With new political leadership, and development beginning within the I-195 District, Providence is well-positioned for the same type of renewal.” After three terms as mayor of Pittsburgh, Mayor Murphy joined the Urban Land Institute in 2006, focusing on the economic impact large institutions and public-private partnerships have on local economies. The Providence Preservation Society has long contributed to the economic vitality of Rhode Island through its work in the capital city, preserving our important past, while being a partner in the city’s growth.

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School vacation activities at the Providence Children’s Museum

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Get the kids out of the house, here’s what’s happening at the Providence Children’s Museum:


School Vacation FUN! at Providence Children’s Museum

December 26 – 31

Providence Children’s Museum is the BEST place for school vacation fun! The Museum is open during vacation, Friday, December 26 – Friday, January 2, from 9:00 AM – 6:00 PM. Families explore Water Ways, an imaginative new water play environment, and join special activities all week long:

Imagination Playground

Friday, December 26 • 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Kids invent their own ways to play as they stack and build with huge blue foam blocks of all shapes and sizes. Using blocks, wheels, spools, tubes and a variety of loose parts, construct castles and forts, invent interesting sculptures and more!

Sparky’s Puppets

Saturday, December 27 • 1:00 & 2:00 PM
Sparky’s Puppets dramatize favorite children’s stories with colorful hand puppets, playful humor and plenty of audience participation. See a snowman come to life and meet a shoemaker and an ice fishing bear in the puppets’ playful winter tales. Shows at 1:00 & 2:00 PM; recommended for ages 4 and up.

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CNU Movie Night – December 17, 2014

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This month at Aurora, enjoy thought provoking and inspiring short films showing how innovative cities around the world are creating livable streets and neighborhoods. What can Providence learn from these successes? The evening includes a brief open discussion after each video, plus free popcorn!

Wednesday, Dec. 17th – 5:30-7:30pm
276 Westminster St., Providence RI
Optional $5 donation supports CNU New England’s work and future events.
Event page on Facebook
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Mayor-Elect Elorza announces Inaugural Weekend events

From the Transition Providence website:


transition-providence-logo

Mayor-elect Elorza Announces One Providence Inaugural Weekend

Providence, RI – Mayor-elect Jorge O. Elorza today announced his One Providence Inaugural Weekend – an exciting program of inaugural events to showcase Providence, promote community service, and celebrate the occasion as Elorza takes the oath of office as Providence’s 38th Mayor on Monday, January 5, 2015.

“The One Providence Inaugural Weekend is a wonderful opportunity to showcase our capital city and to encourage giving back to our community through community service,” Mayor-elect Elorza said. “I look forward to joining with residents from across our city and state to celebrate the beginning of an exciting new chapter for the City of Providence.”

Inauguration Weekend kicks off on Saturday, January 3, as Mayor-elect Elorza asks residents to celebrate their civic pride and give back to our community through volunteerism by participating in his One Providence Day of Service. Canned goods and non-perishable food items will be collected for the Rhode Island Food Bank at venues across the city. Mayor- elect Elorza also encourages people of all ages to spend part of their day on Saturday, January 3 volunteering for their favorite organization or community group.

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Providence Geeks – December 10, 2014

Providence Geeks Providence Geeks
Wednesday, December 10th, 5:30 – 8pm
AS220, 115 Empire Street, Providence, RI
FREE (buy your own food and drink – it’s cheap)
RSVP at Facebook

Providence Geeks:

achievery_logo-colorWe’ve got an awesome evening planned for the last Geek Dinner of 2014.

How do you know what people can really do? How can you prove your own skills even without a traditional diploma?

Over the past few years, digital credentials have emerged as a compelling solution to these questions. Digital credentials are evidence-backed, data-rich tokens of achievement that are transforming education and HR around the world.

Working alongside giants like Mozilla, Pearson Education, and the Gates Foundation, Providence-based Achievery has established itself as the most active company in defining and supporting the leading digital credential standard — Open Badges.

In addition to supporting the community effort, Achiopen-badges-logoevery has built its own robust web application and API for enabling organizations to create, award and track their own trusted digital credentials. Their users include Oxfam, Open edX and the Model United Nations.

On Wednesday the 10th, Co-Founders, CEO Damian Ewens and CTO Kerri Lemoie, will tell the Achievery story, demo their impressive platform, and give a sneak peek at where they are headed next.

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Providence Rink opens Saturday, November 15, 2014

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From the City of Providence:


The Providence Rink Opens Saturday, November 15th for the 2014-2015 Season

The Providence Rink will be open for ice skating season starting on Saturday, November 15th at 10:00am. Regular hours of operation during the week are Monday through Friday, 10am until 10pm and new hours for Saturdays and Sundays are 10am until 10pm. The Rink is open on all winter holidays.

General admission is $7 for adults, $4 for seniors, $4 for children (12 and under), and $4 for military. Skate rentals are $5 and skate sharpening is $7. Season passes are available and priced as $90 for an adult, $200 family of four, $50 children and seniors. Special rates are available for birthday parties, school groups, business and social groups, and for full ice rental for private events. Visit www.providencerink.com for details and to make your reservations.

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UPDATED: Providence Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Commission Meeting – November 19, 2014

aurora

featured-bikeped Providence Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Commission Meeting
November 19, 2014, 5:00pm at Aurora
276 Westminster Street. Hosted by the Providence Congress for the New Urbanism (CNU) group, Cornish Associates, and Aurora
Note different start time and location

Agenda

  • 5:00: Introductions and Introduction to BPAC and CNU
  • 5:05: “Bike/Ped Safety Assessment Planning/USDOT Secretary Foxx’s Bicycle and Pedestrian Safety Initiative,” Nick Garcia, USDOT
  • 5:45: Complete Streets: Intentions Behind the Resolution/Making it Useful
  • 6:10: Tactical Urbanism to Address Bike/Ped Roadway Challenges, Molly Henry, East Coast Greenway
  • 6:25: New Business
  • 6:30: Adjourn

Update: This meeting will not have a formal agenda. Instead it will be an informational meeting with the Providence Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Commission (BPAC). Please come, enjoy a cocktail, and meet and discuss the BPAC with the BPAC Commissioners. This is a good time to give feedback on the direction you would like to see the BPAC go under the new administration coming into City Hall in January.

Full disclosure: I am a member of this Commission.
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Providence Preservation Society Symposium – November 6-8, 2014

pps-symposium-save-date-2014

The 2013-2014 Providence Symposium speaker series is cultivating an important dialogue on preservation, development and quality of place, with a specific focus on Downtown Providence. From open space to transportation, economic assets to partnerships, we explore the key components in the making of a great city.

The series brings national experts to Providence to talk about creating healthy and successful urban environments. Join us and take part in this critical conversation about our city.

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Providence Geeks – October 15, 2014

Providence Geeks Providence Geeks
Wednesday, October 15th, 5:30 – 8pm
AS220, 115 Empire Street, Providence, RI
FREE (buy your own food and drink – it’s cheap)
RSVP at Facebook

For the October Geek Dinner, we’ve got one word for you for: nanotech, baby!

nanosteel-logoActually — and better yet — it’s Nanosteel, a largely under-the-radar Providence-based startup that’s leading the charge to create a new generation of steel, based on nano-structures. The 30-person team has raised $50+ million to date — most recently from GM Ventures — to fuel their mission.

Nanosteel’s products are significantly stronger than traditional steel. So for example, using Nanosteel, an automotive manufacturer can achieve the same strength with thinner gauges. This means less weight and ultimately, better fuel economy. Awesome, right? It gets even better though: due to Nanosteel’s hardness and wear-resistance, its powdered-form is proving to be an ideal material for additive manufacturing (think industrial-strength 3d printing).

Wednesday the 15th, Nanosteel CEO David Paratore will tell the Nanosteel story, demo their products, and give a sneak peek at where this ambitious startup is headed next.

See you there! You won’t want to miss this.


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CNU New England: Vision for Greater Kennedy Plaza Walkabout and Panel Discussion – October 15, 2014

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Vision for Greater Kennedy Plaza: Walkabout and Panel Discussion

Providence, Rhode Island
Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Please join CNU New England for a walkabout in Providence’s Kennedy Plaza and panel discussion at Aurora to review the progress, programming, and next steps for the Vision for Greater Kennedy Plaza. Through a public-private partnership between the Downtown Providence Parks Conservancy and the City of Providence, this project seeks to create a pedestrian-friendly environment, encourage transit ridership, bolster economic well-being, promote arts and culture, and encourage tourism. The first steps toward implementation of the long-term vision are under construction, so please come join us to discuss what’s next. “Ideas for admission” are encouraged at the door – provide your walkabout observations and thoughts regarding next steps toward implementation of the vision.


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Providence PARK(ing) DAY – September 19, 2014

union-studio-parklet

Union Studio‘s parklet last year. Photo by Rachel Playe

From Rhode Island Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects:


September 19, 2014 8:00am – 4:00pm

Come out and join us for the second annual PARK(ing) Day Providence!

This year, PARK(ing) Day Providence will have 32 parklets in Downtown, the West Side, and the East Side and a protected bike lane on Broadway. We can’t express our thanks enough to the Downtown Improvement District, the West Broadway Neighborhood Association, the Department of Public Works, the City of Providence, and all of our amazing sponsors.

Check out the maps to plan your tour of the parklets on the 19th!

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Providence Geeks – September 17, 2014

Providence Geeks Providence Geeks
Wednesday, September 17th, 5:30 – 8pm
AS220, 115 Empire Street, Providence, RI
FREE (buy your own food and drink – it’s cheap)
RSVP at Facebook

Welcome back, everyone! Hope you had an awesome August. Providence Geeks goes back to school next week with an excellent September presenter.

What percent of live events sell out? 50%? 20%? Nope… try 2%.

crowdsurfFounded in 2013 by two recent Brown grads, Providence-based Crowdsurf aims to remedy this situation using a combination of geographic and social audience info. Armed with these insights, Crowdsurf’s customers — event venues and promoters — have a much better sense of which acts to book, and how to most effectively promote them.

big-ticketAs the first stage of their rollout this summer, Crowdsurf launched Big Ticket, a mobile app that offers users the chance to reap major discounts on show tickets. The app — currently being piloted in RI, MA, CT and OR — has already enabled Crowdsurf to build one of the largest databases of audience info in the Northeast.

On Wednesday, Co-founders CEO Alex Oberg and CTO Evan Altman will tell the Crowdsurf story, demo their impressive platform, and give a sneak peek at where they’re headed next.

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A Better World by Design Conference – September 19-21, 2014

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Students from Brown University and Rhode Island School of Design host seventh annual A Better World by Design Conference

Each fall, A Better World by Design (ABWxD) brings a global community of students, academics, and professionals to Providence, Rhode Island in order to reach across disciplines and unite under a common goal: building a better world. Organized by students from Brown and RISD, ABWxD brings together cutting edge alternative content and introduces the next generation of design pioneers. ABWxD rethinks what a conference can actually do.

What: A Better World by Design Conference
Who: Ellen Jorgensen, Co-founder and Executive Director of Genspace • Sarah Williams, Director of Civic Data Design Lab • Melissa Mongiat, Founder of Daily Tous Les Jours • Brian House, media artist • Michael Ben-Eli, Founder of the Sustainability Laboratory • and many more
When: Friday September 19 to Sunday September 21
Where: Campuses of Brown University and the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD)
Why: 2014 attendees can expect the largest lineup yet, drawing from fields such as mapping, interactive art, design policy, and DIY biology. The theme this year is wayfinding, describing a collective design process used to solve social challenges.

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Hope Street Cyclovía – September 7, 2014

hopestreetcyclovia

From the Facebook event page:


Join Mayor Angel Taveras and the City of Providence for a car-free event that will open up Hope Street for walking, skating, running, cycling and exercise.

Free and open to the public! Featuring Zumba, YMCA’s Y on the Move obstacle course, Recycle-A-Bike, crafts, road bike and BMX demos, a pop-up playground, a dog fashion show, health information and screenings from The Miriam Hospital, and musical performances by Joe’s Backyard Band and Emeline Easton!

The event will take place on Hope Street between 9th Street and Rochambeau Avenue, Sunday, September 7th from noon to 4pm.

Local partners include the City of Providence’s Healthy Communities Office and Office of Sustainability, The Miriam Hospital- a Lifespan Partner, Hope Street Merchants Association, Bank RI, Walgreens, Zipcar, and the Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Commission.

For more information visit ProvidenceRI.com

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Rescheduled Broadway Cyclovía – August 17, 2014

broadway-ciclovia-august

The Broadway Cyclovia which was scheduled for July 27th was postponed due to weather concerns. It has been rescheduled to August 17, 2014 • noon-4pm.
Broadway Cyclovía
Broadway from Dean St. to Courtland St.
Sunday, August 17, 2014 • 12noon – 4pm

Join Mayor Angel Taveras and the City of Providence on Sunday, August 17 for a car-free event that will open up Broadway for walking, skating, running, cycling and exercise. Free and open to the public! Featuring Zumba, bike activities, street vendors and more!

The event will take place on Broadway from Dean St. to Courtland St.

Local partners include the City of Providence’s Healthy Communities Office and Office of Sustainability, Walgreens, Zipcar, and the Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Commission.

For more information visit ProvidenceRI.com.

Full disclosure: I am a member of the Providence Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Commission.
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Providence Geeks – July 16, 2014

Providence Geeks Providence Geeks
Wednesday, July 16th, 5:30 – 8pm
AS220, 115 Empire Street, Providence, RI
FREE (buy your own food and drink – it’s cheap)
RSVP at Facebook

voltserverHey! Wednesday is the last Geek Dinner of the summer! (Like all self-respecting RI’ers, we take August off.)

Over the past couple of years, Providence Geeks has been fortunate to feature a number of awesome RI startups at the intersection of electric power and info tech.

On Wednesday, we’ll feature perhaps the most ambitious one yet: VoltServer. Using its patented Packet Energy Transfer (PET) technology, this East Greenwich-based startup has figured out how to no-less-than digitize electricity…

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