It isn’t by accident that our What the Truck?! events have taken place only in centrally-located, mature neighbourhoods. We knew early on, for a grassroots festival like ours, we needed to choose areas of high residential density and ideally, areas which also boasted high levels of foot traffic. Given we had a promotional budget of $0, we needed to encourage the chance that visitors could stumble upon the festival.
Of course, our secondary reasoning for the venues we have chosen in the past relate to our desire to animate underutilized spaces by showcasing their potential, and encouraging the use of alternative modes of transportation by ensuring pedestrian and transit accessibility.
This is why our upcoming event The Quarters is so exciting. The area has fallen into disrepair over the years, but the City has a grand vision to breathe life back into the area, which will include parks, a direct connection to the river valley, and new commercial and residential developments. One development, the Boyle Renaissance, is well underway, and can be seen as the herald of change in this neighbourhood.
Located just east of downtown, the completed first phase not only includes both affordable and market housing in the Welcome Village, but also a community centre. Mack and I toured through the facility in March, and were really impressed by what we saw. The building houses the Boyle Street Community League and also functions as its multi-function community hall – a gym, meeting rooms and even a kitchen can be rented through the league. We’ve been told that certain choice times in the gym have already been fully booked for the year by sports teams.
The YMCA occupies the second floor of the building, and runs several programs out of the facility, including a family resource centre, child care centre and a collective kitchen.
We also appreciated some of the aesthetic features, including built-in projection equipment to allow art or films to be showcased just behind the glass walls, and a communal table that will be installed in the outdoor courtyard.
When the City approached us earlier this year about organizing a Truck Stop event at the Boyle Renaissance, we knew it was the perfect fit. Though it may not have the foot traffic of Downtown, Oliver or Old Strathcona, we hope that through events like this, more Edmontonians will be exposed to up-and-coming neighbourhoods like The Quarters.
Join us on July 25, 2013 for our next Truck Stop in The Quarters!
What: Truck Stop: Boyle Renaissance
Where: Boyle Renaissance Plaza, 103A Avenue & 95 Street
When: Thursday, July 25, 2013
Expect children’s activities, music, a movie projection and tours of the new facility. And of course, food!
We are thrilled that four of the food trucks that debuted this year will be joining us that night. This will be one of the best opportunities to try food from several of the newest trucks in town, all in one place!
Menus will be posted at the What the Truck?! website on July 18, so check back then. Hope to see you there!