What are the geekiest, friendliest, most community involved businesses in the downtown? That’s what I’m going to find out. Or rather, I’m going to find out just how geeky the downtown can get.
There was incentive for me to do this. The Downtown Halifax Business Commission offered me and a bunch of other bloggers a $100 shopping spree downtown as part of their Big Day Downtown promotion. You can follow the action on Twitter. The really nice thing about this is that they also made it pretty clear that I can say whatever I want about the businesses I visit. I don’t think they have anything to be worried about, really – I love the downtown. The only caveat is if I encounter some bad service or something. That wouldn’t be the commission’s fault though.
The more pressing problem is that this is a blog about librarians and libraries. How can I swing a story about a local shopping spree to a potentially huge market of 150,000 librarians in the U.S. and another 10,000 in Canada? What is it that librarians like that could still engage a local audience?
I have three answers. 1. Geek porn 2. Community-focus 3. Stuff kids would like in a way that stretches their imaginations a bit.
What do I mean by geeky? Well, as this Venn Diagram demonstrates, geeky means that I am looking for things that smart people could be obsessed about. Think comics books and graphic novels (I considered inviting comic / graphic novel writer Faith Erin Hicks to come along, but we aren’t really friends or anything and I didn’t want to be creepy). Or crazy rubber duckies in astronaut uniforms.
Community Focus is another bit. Just Us Coffee is an obvious one here, but I’ll be looking around for shops that recognize the value of their communities and put a little back into it.
I am going to demonstrate number 3 by bringing along the ever-famous Mr. 6. Yes, the kid who can tell you the atomic weight of vanadium without searching Wikipedia. That also means a trip to the Freak Lunch Box is inevitable.
I’m really looking forward to my day. I’ve given myself a deadline of August 10th to write it all up. I promise to take lots of pictures and may consider including some video if I can muster it.
That said, I haven’t completely figured out our itinerary yet. I could use your help.
If you are a resident Haligonian, where should I go to find the geekiest things in town? What businesses are real community players?
If you are a librarian or geek (or library geek), what object(s) will score me the largest number of geek points? What should I go out looking for on my big day downtown?