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BarCamp Philly: Share your inner geek at this year’s unconference

The event where innovation meets community returns Nov. 18 at Wharton’s Huntsman Hall. Here's what to expect.

BarCamp Philly 2019's presentation board. (Photo by Marta Rusek) is a media partner for BarCamp Philly 2023.
This is a guest post by Harper Yatvin, head of marketing and public relations for BarCampPhilly.

Yearning for an experience that will scratch that intellectual curiosity itch, invoke the spirit of adventure, and have you laughing alongside new friends?

Mark your calendars for Nov. 18 because BarCamp Philly is back, and it’s assembling Philly’s brightest and most passionate minds to Wharton’s Huntsman Hall to share what inspires them and what they’ve been working on.

Get ready to dive into the vibrant world of unconferences, where attendees rule and every voice matters.

What is BarCamp Philly?

Imagine you’re a kid, it’s Friday, and you’ve been waiting all week to share your favorite toy at show-and-tell. Remember the anticipation you felt until, finally, it was your turn to show off what you’re interested in? Then, that feeling of sheer joy when your classmates are curious about what you brought and start asking you questions about it? Now take that sensation, and imagine feeling it as an adult where you have more impressive and delightfully complex toys, and peers are voting for you to share what you’re passionate about. That’s BarCamp Philly.

We aren’t your typical conference. We’re purposefully an unconference, an event where attendees shape the agenda. That means that not all of the events are required to be tech-centered. Want to share the economic strategies the Philadelphia Eagles employ to crush the NFL Draft each year? We’ve got space for that. Are you super into water bottle design? Perfect, there’s room for your sketches here. Or do you want to help a friend turn their passion project of creating boutique furniture out of recycled skateboards into a full-time business? Fantastic, send us the website link after the session (it would make a slick coaster set). As a cohesive community, we are about a shared experience of learning, joy and discovery.

Get your ticket

The unconference experience

Here’s how it works at BarCamp Philly: Instead of pre-set schedules and speakers, attendees create the agenda on the spot, making it an organic and engaging experience for all. That means anyone (including you) can attend and give a talk on whatever you’d like. You could have a 15-minute talk about AI ethics or a 45-minute chat about how cave painting patterns made their way into ‘80s wallpaper. Variety is the spice of life, as they say, and we agree.

Here’s how it works:

  • Democracy in action — The morning of the event, participants gather during the catered breakfast to pitch their ideas for sessions, discussions or talks. Whether you’re passionate about the latest programming languages, ultimate frisbee or the joys of retro gaming, your idea can find a place here.
  • The voting begins — Attendees cast their votes, selecting the sessions they’re most excited about. The most popular ideas get a spot on the schedule.
  • Sessions galore — As the day unfolds, you’ll find yourself in a whirlwind of thought-provoking discussions, hands-on workshops and lightning talks. It’s a spontaneous exchange of ideas and expertise led by you and your fellow attendees.
  • Networking bonanza — In between sessions, grab a cup of coffee and mingle with fellow enthusiasts, hobbyists and professionals. The informal atmosphere encourages networking, collaboration and the formation of lifelong connections.

Recent BarCamp Philly organizers with the crowd in back (L to R): Brian Crumley, Joe Campbell, Amanda Renzulli, Maurice Gaston, Briana Morgan and Lisa Yoder. (Photo courtesy of Tim Allen)

Why BarCamp Philly?

  • Community firstBarCamp Philly is driven by the community. You won’t find sales pitches here. It’s all about genuine knowledge sharing and fostering connections.
  • Diverse perspectives — The unconference format ensures diverse topics and perspectives. You might stumble upon a session that sparks a new passion or career direction.
  • Interactive learning — Forget about passively sitting through presentations. At BarCamp Philly, you actively participate, ask questions, and share insights.
  • Philadelphia’s tech spirit — Philadelphia has built a thriving tech scene, and BarCamp Philly captures its essence perfectly. You’ll connect with locals who are passionate about technology and innovation.
  • Affordable and accessible — We believe this platform and knowledge should be accessible to everyone. That’s why BarCamp Philly offers affordable early-bird tickets of $10 until Oct. 9 and full-price tickets of $15 so students, professionals, interns and tech enthusiasts of all backgrounds can attend.

Join the fun

BarCamp Philly is where tech meets community, ideas flow freely, and you can relax with your peers. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or just dipping your toes into the world of innovation, this unconference is for you.

Get your ticket, and come prepared to share your knowledge, gain new insights, and connect with like-minded individuals who share your passion for all things tech. It’s a day of learning, laughter and pure geeky joy.

So, mark your calendars for Nov. 18 and join us at BarCamp Philly. It’s not just an event; it’s a celebration of the tech-savvy spirit that defines our community. Let’s make this unconference the highlight of your calendar. See you there!

Get your ticket

Companies: Wharton School
Projects: BarCamp Philly

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