The moment you turned down Forsyth Street and walked towards the Florida Theatre electricity was in the air as locals were buzzing with everything One Spark regarding the big reveal, the next location for One Spark 2014 — Berlin.
Food trucks lined the street and inside craft beer was served. The first to sell out was a local Intuition Ale Works brew called Smoke IPA, an exclusive beer only available in downtown Jacksonville.
Local business owners, creators, venues and One Spark staff were mixing and mingling, as everyone was excited to hear the big news.
“They aren’t just supporting us, they are supporting our creators,” said Joe Sampson, executive director of One Spark.
A local band, Canary in the Coal Mine, welcomed everyone into the Florida Theatre. As more and more people gathered One Spark’s public relations and volunteer services manager, Meredith O’Malley Johnson, made sure that everyone was being taken care of from the selling of merchandise to handling the media.
The lights dimmed down and Karen Feagins, news director from WJCT, took the stage to welcome everyone to the big reveal. One Spark’s executive director, Joe Sampson redefined how the funds for One Spark 2014 are going to be distributed and then teased the crowd before Elton Rivas, original One Spark co-founder, started the reveal.
Berlin– the next host city of One Spark 2014, set to begin mid-September.
The spark will grow across the pond. The layout of the following cities is not finalized however talk of Sydney, Seoul, Johannesburg and Rio de Janiero would make One Spark a worldwide phenomenon.
“We are launching One Spark Berlin this year and couldn’t be more excited,” Rivas said.
Sampson explained to the crowd how much One Spark means to Jacksonville and why the creators are the ones that are igniting the spark. Jacksonville is transforming into a start-up-hub. Places like Co-Work Jax are paving the way to the future of business in Jacksonville.
“Create the Jacksonville you want during those five days,” Sampson said.
This story was reported by Ignite Media, an independent news bureau created by University of North Florida students.