Thursday, December 18, 2008

Pecha Kucha, Vol. 3

Detroit Synergy and the AIA-Detroit will soon announce that the next installment of their Pecha Kucha project will happen on Thursday, February 19 in the Hard Rock Cafe. Since Hard Rock is different than most PK Night venues, and I'm one of the people who selected it, I wanted to take a moment and tell everyone why we're going there.

Yes, Hard Rock is a corporate restaurant.

Hard Rock has a menu that is set by folks more than a thousand miles away from the restaurant.

There's no getting around these facts. However, Hard Rock does offer a few benefits that make it an appealing option.

First, there are all of the logistical issues associated with having PK Night at any venue. Hard Rock Cafe excels in these categories.
  • Hard Rock has secured parking in the Compuware parking structure that's available for free with a validation in the restaurant. A lot of other venues require you to either pay through the nose for parking or have you park on the street.
  • For those who don't drive to the event, Hard Rock is accessible by more than a dozen bus routes and is only a couple blocks away from a People Mover station.
  • Hard Rock has a top-notch audio-video set-up. Unlike our venue for PK Night, Vol. 1, a presenter can stand anywhere he or she wants in the cafe and never have to worry about feedback from their microphone. There is also an abundance of television monitors in the place so folks can see the presentations no matter where they are sitting.
  • Hard Rock is willing to give us full control over much of their restaurant. Their normal guests will be moved into the Compuware atrium or into a separate room where they will be able to dine without them bothering us or vice versa.
  • Since it's a restaurant, catering and beverage service is built in with nothing for Detroit Synergy and the AIA to worry about. This might not seem like a lot to folks who have never produced an event like this, but this can be a huge headache for the team that puts this on. We'd much rather focus on getting the best presenters.
There is also the fact that Hard Rock is starting to present concerts from local rock bands, which is something that hasn't gotten a lot of attention either in the local news media or the blogosphere. By doing this event there, we're able to call attention to an opportunity for local musicians that is currently being overlooked. As an added bonus, there will be a special concert after PK Night as part of an afterglow.

Finally, there is the fact that - like a lot of cultural events in southeastern Michigan - Pecha Kucha Night does not have an abundance of cash at the moment. From a strategic standpoint, by doing our February event in Hard Rock, we will be able to afford venues for the rest of 2009 that we otherwise wouldn't be able to.

For all of these reasons, the committee thought that Hard Rock Cafe was the best option for Pecha Kucha Night, Vol. 3. I hope to see lots of people there.

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