About the Urban Culture Conference + Awards
Welcoming the first annual Urban Culture Conference to Vancouver, British Columbia! Vancouver is a city of rich culture, individualism, and some serious artistic talent! Our goal is to bring together thousands of like-minded people for a weekend of music, entertainment, seminars, and events showcasing the city’s artistic and athletic talent!
It’s about sharing new experiences, learning about the current scenes, and opening up to new movements within URBAN CULTURE.
Who's Performing? Speaking?
Our schedule of events is evolving by the day. We have a jam packed lineup of talented musicians, compelling speakers, and some bad-ass competitions that will be a blast to watch. We will release the exact schedule in the weeks to come.
This event is all about Vancouver, so just come expecting to be blown away by Vancouver's local talent. This conference is about the people, and showcasing the true, unfiltered skills of the city.
Food & Drink
We will have a variety of food and beverage services at the conference. There will be beer and alcohol served in the "beer garden", as well as food trucks cooking their delectable, Vancouver specialties.
What to Bring
- Smart Phone (we have a surprise!)
- Energy for events and tons of free stuff
- An open mind for adventure.
- Some pocket change for food n beer
We're Giving Back
This event is not about the profit. It is about giving Vancouver something special; a time to remember and look forward to year after year. We will be donating 10% of all proceeds to Vancouver charity Let's Fuck Cancer in an effort to fuel more early detection of cancer campaigns. Read more about giving back.
- Date: August 27-28, 2011
- Location: Plaza Of Nations (and surrounding area), Vancouver, BC view map here.
- Times: 12PM - 10PM
- Ages: All Ages
- Cameras Permitted: Yes
I'm a business, how do I get involved?
We offer a variety of ticketing packages, depending on your needs. Head over to our ticketing page to buy tickets and learn more!
For General Admission, it cost $75 at the door, and $65 online.
What is the Awards Show / Voting?
Unlike traditional awards shows where winners are often not the favorite of the public, the Urban Culture Awards is completely transparent and online. For the last few months, we have been collecting nominations from the general public, and we have received tens of thousands, from all over Vancouver and way beyond! NOW, we have tallied your votes, and have compiled the absolute best in every category. On the bottom of the homepage are polls where you can vote on every category. The results will ALWAYS be public. The winners will be recognized Conference Weekend.
- Live Entertainment
- Vancouver Music Scene
- Awards Show
- Exhibitors & Booths
- Food Carts & Local Beer
- Guest Speakers & Seminars
- Sports Competitions
- Social Media & Blogging Seminars
- For the complete list, see our performances page
Where is it?
Plaza of Nations + Surrounding Areas, Vancouver, BC
Want to join our street team to help us promote the Urban Culture Conference? Go to our Street Team Contact page and shoot us an email.
We currently have a very dedicated street team working with us, and we wouldn't know what to do without them! Our street team provides logistical help, social media, artist management, entertainment organization, etc. It is a great opportunity to get involved with an up and coming event that will change Vancouver Summers for years to come!
Plus, our street team gets hooked up!
Great news coming from the conference frontlines…
This is officially the 3rd installment of the ‘conference frontlines’ update. We feel it is important to keep you in the loop on a regular basis, leading into the 1st annual Urban Culture Conference + Awards taking place at the Plaza of Nations from August 27-28. So much happens each week behind the scenes, it’s incredible how many emails we receive with feedback and comments. We have some big announcements this week, read below.
Our BIGGEST announcement is about ticket prices…we have some great news! Our ticket prices are getting greatly reduced, thanks to a strategic shift in sponsorship. We will be partnering with a corporate sponsor who will have a heavy brand/marketing presence at the conference in exchange for covering a large portion of the event and production costs. We feel it is necessary to pass the savings on to the attendees to ensure the venue is at capacity and all of the businesses who have vendor booths make the biggest impact possible for their brand.
The tickets were going to go up in Price on June 1st, but now, we will be lowering the prices to the following:
Yep, that’s over 50% cheaper than it was prior to June 1st! Buy Tickets Here.
We just released the 2.0 version of our conference entertainment page, which now shows the artists biography and artist photos. We have been adding new artists each week and will continue to add a few more headlining acts in the upcoming weeks.
Understanding which artist is playing at set times is important to deciding the day(s) you will attend. In the 3.0 version of the performance page there will be a time-line of the artists and which area of the conference grounds to see them. All of the bands will be on the main stage, but we also have B Boy Hip Hop dance battles, Parkour Demonstrations, and a Skateboarding competition. Currently we have Invoke Media confirmed to speak about Social Media, Hootsuite, and Blogging, but there will be other seminars on topics from Music and Video Production, to Music Industry Business, Art, Sports, and more. All of this is based on your feedback and what you want to see from the conference so do not hesitate to contact us if you have a band who you would like to see perform or a speaker you would like to hear.
Each night of the conference there will be a spectacular final closing performance, and you will not want to miss either of them. We will release details on these performances very soon.
Last week we ran a contest for 2 free general access tickets for the best ‘social street eats picture‘ that was uploaded to our Facebook page. The winner was Sean Neild with a Halibut Taco from Feastro the Rolling Bistro. Congratulations on the win and we look forward to hosting you during conference weekend!
We will be giving away a number of tickets to the conference using Clubezone.com and our local Blog partners. Stay tuned on how to take part in these giveaways by either following us on Twitter or liking us on Facebook. Don’t worry, we won’t do too many status updates and spam out your time-line with junk, that’s not how we roll.
Urban Potion Vol III
We will soon release the third mixtape in the Urban Potion series, this one featuring a handful of Indie Rock tracks, from some of Vancouver’s finest artists. Bands: We are still accepting submissions, please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Win 2 free tickets for taking the best “street eats” picture!
Tomorrow we are running a “social street eats contest.” The winner gets a FREE pair of tickets to the Urban Culture Conference + Awards! On May 25th, we want YOU to take a picture of some street cart food you bought in metro Vancouver. Upload it to our facebook page using your smart phone or computer and encourage your friends to “like” the picture. Most likes wins the pair of tickets!
30 seconds of your time to take a picture and upload it, and you get to see 30+ bands, contests, beer gardens, food vendors, sports demonstrations, art displays, and seminars on topics from music production to the best tactics for Blogging success. Just don’t let your friends sell them for beer money (unless it’s local craft beer of course).
**UPDATE: Winner is Sean Neild with a Halibut Taco from Feastro the Rolling Bistro.
Recent changes and announcements from the conference frontlines
Well, it has almost been a month since we first launched the Urban Culture Conference + Awards website and voting system. What an amazing turnout so far; over 70,000 votes made, tickets selling fast, vendor booths 50% booked, and we are looking at increasing the size of the space for the conference grounds.
We could not have asked for better feedback from the community- we receive many poll requests, and we have done a great job adding poll nominations in a timely fashion. In addition, we have received many email submissions asking us to provide website links beside each poll nominee to add context, so we have started to roll that out on all of the polls. Now when you go to vote, you can click ‘visit site’ to check out the website of the business or person before voting. We expect this process to be finished by June 1st.
We are getting close to finalizing our entertainment lineup for the conference weekend. We currently have 30 bands confirmed and are looking to add a few more acts from some genres which do not currently have a large presence in the lineup. Specifically, more DJs from the Dubstep or House genre, as well as some popular rock bands. Once this has been confirmed we will send out an announcement with the itinerary of entertainment for the weekend, this band plays at 1PM on Saturday August 27th, etc etc. This will ensure you can setup a schedule for enjoying your favorite bands during the conference. We will also be adding seminars from local leaders speaking on topics such as Blogging, Social Media, Music Production, and Photography. The Vancouver Skateboard Coalition and the Parkour Community of BC will be on location doing demonstrations and answering questions.
There will be live art displays, tattoo demos, photography displays, and tons of local business vendors having mini contests and doing giveaways.
Tickets are currently on sale here and they go up in price on June 1st by $15 so be sure to get them at a reduced rate. If you are a well connected person in the city and have a lot of friends who would be interested in attending the Urban Culture Conference + Awards, there is an opportunity to make some quick easy bucks. Sign up for our affiliate program and you will earn 15% of the tickets that you sell. It’s an easy process and done completely online. Simply signing up and placing a link to buy tickets on your facebook page and blog could drive sales, which means quick, easy money for you!
If you would like to get involved with the Urban Culture Conference weekend from a vendor booth or sponsorship opportunity, download our PDF and give it a read over to learn about our target demographics and what you can expect on the ground during conference weekend. Vendor booths are based on size and location, so for example you would pay more for a booth closer to the stage, as this location will generate a higher level of foot-traffic. Vendor booths will have access to water, electricity, tables, and disposal areas. You can bring your own tables and booth setups if you would prefer. We make sure to discuss all opportunities with every vendor, and to encourage the use of games and contests to drive consumer interest.
The online voting system on the conference homepage has received over 70,000+ votes in the first 4 weeks of the website being live. It has been a huge success and we want to thank everyone for contributing their time to vote. Many of you also submit nominations and feedback which we truly love to see. It’s important to us to clearly represent local Urban Culture, and that takes community feedback. On June 1st we will be trimming down the polls and removing nominees with far less votes compared to everyone else in the poll. For example, the photographer who is winning the ‘Best Photographer in Vancouver’ poll and has 800 votes. From 1st to 10th place the voting is pretty close, but there are some people who only have 15 votes. Those people will be removed. Anyone with a chance of winning will stay in the running.
We will still take nominations for the month of June but we will check very closely to ensure the support is there for the business or person to justify their late addition to the polls. As of July 15th 2011 we will lock down all of the polls and no more changes will be made. The Urban Culture Conference + Awards takes place from August 27th to 28th 2011 at the Plaza of Nations. There will be a formal awards ceremony for all of the winners, prizes will be given out, and the media will interview each winner. There is a fantastic opportunity here for local businesses to get noticed, so do not hesitate to reach out and contact us if you want to get on the polls for voting.
We have already released 2 mixtapes from the Urban Potion Mixtape series. We are currently seeking submissions from local rock, metal, and punk bands for Urban Potion volume 3. If you know any bands looking for free promotion, if you are a band manager, or if you play in a band yourself, use the contact form to send us some music and you may find it being used on the next mixtape release. We hope to build the Urban Potion Mixtape series into an ongoing year round celebration of local musicians.
The Urban Culture Conference + Awards is not only a celebration of local art, music, culture, food, and beer. It is highly dynamic and constantly changing based on feedback from people like you. With the collective mind of the entire community of Greater Vancouver, we can create a truly awesome platform to drive business, meet and network with people, and generally have an amazing time during the conference weekend. If you feel we are missing a poll, a rock band on the entertainment lineup, or if you have any general feedback or questions. We want to hear about it. Contact us as time permits.
We look forward to having you out on conference weekend. From all of us at the Urban Culture Conference + Awards, thank you!
Interview with North by East West Blog
Below is an interview that we recently did with Jenn Ashton of North by East West Blog. We answered a lot of the questions that people are having regarding the Urban Culture Conference + Awards. It is taken word from word on their website. If you have any further questions let us know in the comments section below and we will be sure to address them.
So what do you do when Canada’s party hungry city is ready to rock? We’ve celebrated the Olympics, we’ve celebrated the 1st anniversary of the Olympics, we have hockey playoffs going on, we have Vancouver’s 125th coming up, – but then what, thumb twiddling while we await the holiday season? I think not.
Jesse Chase and Adrian Eden have an idea; why not celebrate the people, places and ideas that have helped Vancouver evolve into ‘VanCity’, one of the coolest places to be?
I caught up with Jesse, to find out just how he and his partner came up with this idea, and how the ride has been so far.
Urban Culture Conference & Awards: Jesse Chase (Director of Digital Media & Design)
Before we get into the Conference stuff, can you tell me about your backgrounds – are you promoters?
Sure! I own and operate a web design agency called Vitamin J Design and my partner Adrian Eden owns and operates a SEO agency called Yaletown SEO. I have been creating websites for the music industry, and specialize in big, bold creative styles. Adrian is an SEO ninja, knowing the deep, dark secrets of Search Engine Optimization. He is known for taking a domain to the top of Google Search results overnight. Literally! Professionally, we both offer social media services, and know how to utilize social media to create buzz on an agency level. That said, we handle our design, development, social strategy, and marketing completely in-house.
So no, we are not promoters or event-planners; we are entrepreneurs with a need satisfy a citywide hunger for an event of this stature and due in part to our entrepreneurial backgrounds, we feel that we have the tools required to start any successful business. We have brought brand.LIVE on board and they are supporting us from a logistical standpoint. They ensure that the event is executed smoothly, professionally, and timely. Things such as event permits, insurance, tenting, fencing, security, beer garden, etc are handled by brand.LIVE. brand.LIVE brings the event-planning side of things to the table, while we work on the high-level concepts, marketing, promotion, and artist management.
How did you initially come up with the UCC idea – did you see some sort of need or?
The 2011 Urban Culture Conference + Awards was inspired by the talented athletes, artists, and musicians that live in Vancouver, BC. This city is busting at the seams with talent and opportunity, and there is no good outlet for them to showcase this. We feel that the mainstream has not nearly recognized all of the talent that our city has to offer, so we wanted to create an event to give the artists exposure to both the media and to the people of Vancouver.
In addition, we felt that there are so many businesses that need to be recognized for their tasty fare or their hip clothing, or their fresh roasted coffee and locally brewed beer. There are currently other “best of Vancouver” competitions, but a panel typically chooses the winners. That’s not fair! Why not let the people of the city contribute their opinion! So the Awards show was born. We created the voting system on our website to let every person vote on who they truly think is the best of Vancouver. From craft beers, to local magazines, to social media agencies, we have got Vancouver covered in every category. And we owe that to the public for emailing us hundreds of emails each day, requesting we add more and more talented people to the list of nominations. We owe so much to the people of Vancouver for helping us round out the voting system, and accurately depicting what THE PEOPLE’S favorites truly are. In just two weeks, we have received over 75,000 votes!
Are you surprised by how the UCC has taken off – from what I have seen it seems to have evolved into something huge, is it still manageable?
At first we were beyond surprised. We woke up to see thousands of hits on our site! But after much thought, it made complete sense. Not only are we trying to organize a really fun summer event with over 50 of Vancouver’s favorite artists, but also we are trying to recognize the talent and culture that Vancouver has to offer. All of the hip underground shops, unfound food carts, and local athletes and musicians should be put in the spotlight, and we hope that the awards aspect of the conference does just that.
Our goal was to create an online voting system that allows the people to vote on their favorites so we can accurately depict the best of Vancouver. Sure, some businesses have way more social promotion power than others, which lends a hand to their voting success, but this day in age, we believe that it is a distinct advantage to capitalize on social media…and if you own a business and do not actively promote your brand through social media, it’s time to jump on it!
What are your long-term goals, do you see this as a template for an event that can happen in any city?
Our long-term goals are to build upon the Urban Culture Conference and make it bigger and better each year. We want to create a weekend every single summer in downtown Vancouver that showcases our beautiful city’s talent, and provides an awesome time for everyone attending. Just a peak at this years goals: Two days full of great music, dance performances, skate competitions, and speaking seminars, followed by an evening of light shows, loud music, and one giant party. We will have a beer garden, vendors throwing their own fun competitions, and local street food served from their food carts. Our goal is to create an experience for Vancouver to look forward to year after year.
Have you guys learned anything huge so far?
Yes, three major things:
- The Power of social media is immense, assuming you can achieve the “human effect”
- You must always be realistic…being able to differentiate dreams from pipe dreams is very important
- Welcoming feedback and input from the community is a really great idea and all businesses should openly welcome feedback in order to evolve their offering
Do you feel Vancouver is more receptive to something of this sort in the wake of our successful ‘party’ Olympics?
We think Vancouver is chomping at the bit for an event like this. Again, there is no such thing that showcases all aspects of urban culture in a conference/festival format. The combination of music, performances, and recognition of LOCAL talent is a recipe for a great time. We have received so much support from local businesses, artists, and the people of Vancouver. This constant feedback is a testament to the need for an event of this stature.
Vote for me!
About the voting process you spoke about earlier – I have read a few notes on FaceBook where people are talking about the fact that it seems everything has to be ‘voted on’ to be the ‘best’ etc. and that the voting process itself is degrading artists, can I get your thoughts on that?
The voting process on the website is partly used to discover new bands who have an underground following, and might not yet be considered “mainstream”. It is also used to get an idea of what the local population thinks are the best bands, which helps these bands get publicity and perhaps bookings. If a band is not getting any votes or much less then they thought they would, that might mean they have to create more music or perhaps actively promote their involvement in the UCC+A. If we were to set up the voting system in a “traditional” format, then there would be a panel internally deciding what the “best of Vancouver is.” That is the exact idea that we are trying to get away from – we wanted a voting system that allows the community to vote, and see the results in real-time, while also limiting the number of votes (one per person, per poll).
As far as (degrading them), I do not think that is the case. Many of the artists and musicians on the polls are very talented; they may just not have a good idea of how to promote themselves online, across various social media channels. There has been a huge movement in grassroots promotion within the music industry, thanks to the invaluable tools that social media provides us. Our marketing approach heavily utilizes social media to gain exposure and publicity, so we expect the bands and businesses involved to do the same. This day in age, a strong online presence is expected, and taking advantage of marketing opportunities like the UCC+A is to us, a no-brainer.
Thanks Jesse and party on Vancouver!
Interview with Evolution Radio 1079 at the Burnaby BCIT Campus
We just want to take this time to thank everyone at Evolution Radio 107.9 for inviting us in today to discuss the Urban Culture Conference on the air with your listeners. We got a tour of the studio and saw a ton of behind the scenes voice overs, creative writing, commercial creation, sound effects, and tons more. All of the professors were very nice and easy to speak with. The atmosphere was that of a lot of support and freedom to express yourself, which was nice. One of the walls in the studio was covered with stickers from bands and radio stations. They even had us in to help with commercial creation doing some voice overs. It was a lot of fun and we look forward to hosting BCIT on location during the Urban Culture Conference. They will have a booth and be there to meet with the community and introduce them to career and educational opportunities.
Introducing our newest media partner, Exclaim! Magazine
We are excited to let you all know that we have partnered with Canada’s premier music distribution, Exclaim! Magazine. They will have a heavy presence at our conference and will be supporting our initiatives in their print magazines across the country and online using their social media channels. This is a great opportunity for all of the bands that will be playing at the conference, you may find yourself getting coverage in Exclaim! Magazine though we cannot promise anything, obviously. Just play your hearts out and your music will do the talking. If you are a band and are interested in playing the conference weekend from August 27th to 28th at Plaza of Nations get in touch with us. We have a healthy lineup but have a few more spots open.
Announcing Urban Potion Volume 2
- Announcement, Mixtape
We are excited to release the Urban Potion Volume 2 mixtape, produced by Hi Life Records. This breezy and chill mix of electronic music is great for summer afternoons at the beach. You can download the entire album or stream it online using Soundcloud below. Let us know what you think in the comment section. We welcome submissions from local Vancouver artists and are currently compiling tracks for volume 3 of the mixtape series, which will be focused on the Rock and Metal genres. Contact us if you would like to submit music.
Urban Potion Volume 2 by UrbanCultureConference
FINALLY! Location and Date Details: Plaza of Nations August 27-28 2011!
We are very excited to announce the date and location for the 2011 Urban Culture Conference + Awards. It will take place at the Plaza of Nations and the surrounding areas from August 27th to 28th. The image attached to this Blog post depicts what you will experience during the conference. We are adding more musicians and artists to the lineup every day based on your continued feedback via email and on our social media channels.
From now until June 1st you can save $15 dollars on each ticket purchased, so take advantage of the early pricing as we will sell out very fast. We have actually begun selling tickets online before the location and date details were released due to the heavy website traffic we have received thanks to your voting!
For those of you who have Blogs or are interested in helping us sell tickets online, you can take advantage of our affiliate program where you make 15% of the ticket sales related to your word of mouth efforts. Sign up for our affiliate program and use the link on your text links within Blog content or social sharing. It’s very easy to sign up.
We are adding new bands, hip hop artists, DJs, and public speakers every day based on your feedback via email, keep it coming!
Food and Drinks
We will be using local Food Carts and locally brewed Beer for attendee consumption. This conference and awards weekend is truly hyper local.
Vendors and Sponsors
Businesses or people looking to have a booth at the conference or sponsor elements of the conference weekend, can go here to find more information and to download our PDF. We are expecting 15,000+ people to attend so it’s a great opportunity for branding and sales conversions.
Announcements from the conference frontlines
The last few weeks have been extremely exciting, with the release of a brand new website and conference details, new branding, ticket purchasing, and most importantly, our online voting system for the 2011 UCC Awards. We are working feverishly to release the details of the conference date and location. We’re not allowed to tell you when and where until all the legal mumbo jumbo is processed, but in the next few days, you will know all the juicy details. We will promise you this…the 2011 UCC+A will be held on a weekend in late summer in downtown Vancouver, at a location that is ideal for such an event! Get stoked, we are!
The online voting system has been a massive success since our May 2nd launch, with over 20,000 votes in just 6 days! We feel that there should be a venue for the people of Vancouver to vote on every aspect of Urban Culture, so our cities talent and hard working businesses can get recognized. We are currently taking submissions for nominations in each category, and are adding new poll categories by the day, thanks to all of the people who have provided feedback. Our polls will be closed and locked down on June 1st, which means no more changes or adding nominees, however the voting will continue until a week before conference weekend. Every winner will receive acknowledgment from the entire city on their ‘Best of Vancouver’ win as well as some sweet prizes from our sponsors! SWEET!!!
In the next few days, you will see more artists, sponsors, performers, speakers, and other exciting details released online. We are working hard to ensure that this will be a legendary event in Vancouver’s Urban Culture, for years to come.
The Conference Lineup
Each day, we receive many requests to perform or speak at our conference! We want to ensure that the conference is well rounded and a true representation of Vancouver’s Urban Culture, so we are currently adding more acts to our lineup spanning a multitude of different musical genres. Each hour of the Urban Culture Conference will be excitingly different, mixing seminars with local public figures speaking on various topics, entertainment from dancers, skateboard, and parkour athletes, and at the heart of it all, Vancouver’s music scene. So far, our performance list is as follows (we are going to double the size of our current performance list in the next few days): Swollen Members, DJ Flipout, Snak The Ripper, Heatwave, Matt Brevner, Evil Ebenezer, KAi Skywalker, Quartered, Checkmate + Concise, DJ Skla, Caspian, Lamar Ashe, DJ Riot, Kanabliss, Mia Moth.
Urban Potion Volume 1 Mixtape
The first mixtape of the Urban Potion Mixtape series was released this past week, featuring tracks from Snak the Ripper, Evil Ebinezer, Matt Brevner, Kai Skywalker, The Scalebreakers & Young Sin. This mixtape is the first of many in the Urban Potion series. In the next few days we will be releasing Urban Potion Vol. 2, which will feature tracks from electronic artists…so far the track submissions have been flowing and we are discovering some of Vancouver’s best tunes! If you would like to submit music for the Urban Potion Mixtape series get at us on the website contact form! Lets work together to find the best music and share it with all of the city!
Help Us Spread The Word
Over the last week, we have welcomed many new people to our street team. We would love to have you too. We have established a great relationship with our street team, and we look forward to meeting and introducing more people to the elements of event planning, online and street promotion! It is an exciting and dynamic environment, and a great way to get involved with the local scene. Your help would be MUCH appreciated, whether it be sticker slapping, online promotion, internal logistics, or just plain old word of mouth!
Make Some Cash For Telling Friends!
You can earn some serious cash by selling tickets for us! We have teamed up with Eventbrite to sell our tickets. We have created an affiliate plan that lets you earn 15% of all sales you refer to us. It is extremely easy to do:
1) Join the program by clicking this link. Click the “Join this Program” button.
2) Sign up for an Eventbrite account (just email and password required).
3) You are given a referral link. Copy that link for your records.
4) Everyone that buys a ticket using that link will earn you money. Paste it on your Facebook wall, or distribute it to your friends. Get Creative!
For example, if you get 10 people to buy VIP weekend passes, you will earn $195! It is very easy to earn money, so why not sign up!
Announcing Urban Potion Volume 1
- Announcement, Mixtape
We are very fortunate to have so much talent here in Vancouver. To showcase some local music you may not have heard, we are going to release a series of mixtapes called Urban Potion. We hope you like them, and do let us know in the comments below what you think using your Facebook profile!