For Adrienne Palm, it offered a great opportunity to introduce an expanded definition of the Fox Cities up-and-coming professional class. For Palm, it’s important that folks begin to meet and celebrate the creative class that makes an event like Mile of Music possible.
When people think of professionals, they tend to think of lawyers or accountants, and they are great and talented people” says Palm, who took over as the Fox Cities Chamber of Commerce director of leadership – Pulse and Cultivate earlier this year. “But professional musician and professional chef are important classifications for our economy as well.”
With Mile of Music kicking off at Noon today, Palm used a Pulse event to bring a wide variety of professionals together for an inside look at the creation of the event and a discussion of where it might be headed. But rather than follow the typical lunch-and-learn format, she staged an event that brought together both Pulse members and some of the creative professionals behind the Mile of Music.
A group of about 80 gathered Wednesday afternoon at Rock Garden Studios to sample the artisan food and beer that will be part of the festival, meet and enjoy the work of the musicians who will perform and learn a bit about what it takes to make the festival possible.
One of those is Nathan Litt, a member of the Willems Marketing team and the operations manager for Mile of Music, who described the “creative process” followed as the first Mile of Music began to take shape in 2013.
“We just went ahead and did it. We didn’t really bother to get the necessary permits or talk with the city or the police department about what we were planning,” Litt says. “If we had we might still be working on Mile 1 instead of talking about Mile 3.”
Mile 3 is already tentatively set for Aug. 6-9, 2015. Litt says the challenge will be to continue creating a festival that celebrates the creativity of the Fox Cities beyond the great music those attending will enjoy.
“How do we draw and build,” Litt says. “How do we make it an economic development generator for the community?”