Want to support SPARKcon? Donate here!
SPARKcon is a program of VAE Raleigh. VAE is funded in part by the City of Raleigh based on recommendations of the Raleigh Arts Commission.
Secure Parking USA is happy to support SPARKcon XIV! Plan visit to SPARKcon ahead of time by booking your parking spot in a lot near the festival before ever leaving the house. No more circling the block for you. Use offer code SPARK to get a discount on your festival parking.
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SPARKcon is an open source, interdisciplinary, creativity festival held annually in Downtown Raleigh. SPARKcon offers a platform for creative people to showcase their talents in 14 different categories, including theater, dance, visual art, tech, film, literature, and so much more! This platform is open to everyone because the festival is planned from the bottom up, putting creative people in charge. Through trainings and hands-on experience, VAE’s staff and the festival’s volunteer leadership team help creative people raise funds for, think through the logistics of, and produce their creative ideas using SPARKcon and its built-in audience. VAE Raleigh produces SPARKcon, but does not curate the talent or dictate what creativity is appropriate for the festival. VAE staff works FOR the artists, enabling them to use SPARKcon’s footprint and resources to explore their most experimental and exciting ideas.
80,000+ people attend SPARKcon each year. Our community is very creative, diverse, highly educated, and from across the Southeast region. The core demographic is the urban creative class, including both young professionals employed in the tech sector and families with a keen interest in downtown and the arts community. More than 50% of our attendees fall in the 25-44-year-old range.
In its 13-year history, SPARKcon has successfully:
Trained and empowered 680+ organizers to become new community leaders
Launched artist run businesses like AcroEntertainment, Cirque de Vol Studios, and Imagine Circus
Showcased performances by and exhibited the work of more than 14,000 creative individuals
Engaged hundreds of thousands of local citizens to support and appreciate creative talent in the Triangle
Expanded the careers of artists involved in the festivals by opening the door to museum exhibitions, gallery representation, concerts, touring contracts, and retail opportunities.
Facilitated city design sessions to envision a new concept of an artistic centerpiece for Raleigh and helped design City Plaza to become a “flexible platform” for future artists
Engaged citizens to create a “Raleigh 360” vision of what support for local businesses and talent should look like, eventually informing such efforts as Shop Local Raleigh
Represented SPARKcon as a national model of grass-roots revitalization in venues across the country - including major efforts in Memphis and New Orleans
Included thousands of Wake County Students as artists and sent teaching artists into 30+ schools.
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Questions? Ideas? Get in touch with us!