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Co-creating YIMBY 2015: A Community Festival & Buffalo Urbanism Panel – Sat. Oct. 31 2015!

ThinkFresh Group, in collaboration with Shape My City and The Ryerson City Building Institute are excited to be hosting the 8th annual YIMBY (Yes In My Backyard) Festival at the Ted Rogers School of Management (55 Dundas Street West) at Ryerson University this Saturday, October 31st 2015! This is a free community-led event highlighting community-based action and idea from across Toronto!

The annual YIMBY Festival provides a social space for people and groups involved in grassroots and locally­ driven community development to gather, exchange ideas as well as strategies to affect change. This one-day event includes community groups and non-profits from across Toronto educating residents, politicians, policy makers, and each other through informal table discussions and presentations.

The theme of this year’s festival is Unity Our Strength, which acknowledges the geographic and socioeconomic challenges in Toronto and highlights some of the outstanding work that people are doing to address these challenges and embrace unity. Throughout the event, attendees are invited to connect with organizations at informational displays and participate in interactive workshops led by a wide range of community groups.

Over the last few months, ThinkFresh and Shape My City have been planning YIMBY and have built a fun and action packed day for attendees. Our programming includes, for the first time, Host Programming, where community groups have been invited to program their own activities in breakout rooms (see the schedule). Additionally, ThinkFresh and Shape My City will be engaging attendees at the main YIMBY booth to tell us about your best urban experiences in Toronto. This will help us to develop a deeper understanding of how and why people connect with the spaces, buildings, and environments that surround them. Drop by to tell us your story! We would love to hear about the experiences that you have had in Toronto and what you think affects an urban space, whether positive or negative! With the help of this information, we believe that we can determine how to unite these ideas and apply them to how we plan and design our communities for a better Toronto!

At noon, ThinkFresh is also co-sponsoring a panel discussion on community planning in Buffalo, NY at YIMBY. From the 716 to the 416: Planning & Community Development in Buffalo and Toronto will run from 12pm-1pm featuring speakers from Buffalo and Toronto discussing planning systems, local economic development and community infrastructure building in our respective cities. This event follows up from our visit to Buffalo in April 2015 and will showcase innovative community and planning initiatives from both cities.

And of course it is Halloween – so bring your costume and have a photo with us at the photo booth! After all, you do want your friends to see you in your costume talking about community building, right? J

We hope to see you there!


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