Middle of the Map Forum draws crowds

04/11/2014 9:57 PM

04/11/2014 9:57 PM

The Forum of Ink’s Middle of the Map Fest

— delving into the convergence of the arts, tech and cultural communities in Kansas City — finished up Friday at The Kansas City Star’s Press Pavilion.

More than 300 people registered to hear more than 40 speakers on panels addressing everything from local arts, manufacturing and artisanal foods to innovative women leaders and how to finance the area’s next breakthroughs.

The two-day event kicked off Thursday evening with a question and answer session by George Packer, a New Yorker essayist whose most recent book is “The Unwinding: An Inner History of the New America.”

Panels Friday included a 3 p.m. session titled “Why KC Might Be the Next Austin.” Those panelists include Mayor Sly James, Jon Stephens of the Kansas City Convention and Visitors Association, and Louis Meyers, who helped start the South by Southwest Music and Media Conference and soon will be stepping down as head of the Folk Alliance International.

Replay of twitter coverage