6th Annual IDEA Conference is Saturday, Followed by Mayor Ridenour’s ‘State of the City’ Address

Muncie Action Plan board member Mitch Isaacs helps a 2020 I.D.E.A. Conference attendee identify "where they live" and "where they love" on a map of Muncie. Photo providedMuncie Action Plan board member Mitch Isaacs helps a 2020 I.D.E.A. Conference attendee identify "where they live" and "where they love" on a map of Muncie. Photo provided

By Heather Williams, MAP Task Force 2 Leader—

Muncie, IN—COVID-19 hasn’t stopped Muncie’s neighborhood associations from supporting their residents. Improvement and advocacy work continued throughout 2020 and this year’s I.D.E.A. Conference will be a time to celebrate these efforts. Due to the pandemic, the 6th annual I.D.E.A. Conference will look a little different this year. Previously, I.D.E.A. has involved break-out sessions and moving participants between a variety of spaces for an interactive and informative day of learning, networking, and community building. This year, we are going to hear from the neighborhoods themselves in a series of brief seven minute presentations on how they are adapting to the current landscape, what resources they have tapped into to help their residents, and what their hopes are for the future of their neighborhoods.

The Conference will take place on Saturday, March 6th beginning at 9:30 a.m. with two options to participate, in person at Ball State University’s Pruis Hall or streaming via Facebook Live. Although in-person registration has closed, the I.D.E.A. Conference will begin live streaming at 9:30 a.m. on the Muncie Action Plan Facebook page.

I.D.E.A. will kick-off with a welcome from Dan Ridenour, City of Muncie Mayor, Sue Errington, IN State District 34 Representative, and Geoffrey Mearns, Ball State University President. Neighborhood presentations will begin at 10:00 a.m. and include the following presenters and presentations:

Clifford Clemons, Blaine/Southeast: Learning Lessons & Making Adjustments

Aaron Neff, Anthony/Northside: Saving, Carrying the Torch

JP Hall, Halteman Village: From Private Club to Public ParkThe Story of Halteman Park

Ken Hudson, Whitely Community Council: Increased Need = Increased Service

Stan Geidel, Country Village/Creekwood: Our Star is Rising; How Country Village Raised its Membership in the Year of COVID

Neil Kring, Thomas Park/Avondale: What I’ve Learned Through Relationships with My Neighbors

Lezlie McCrory, South Central: Embracing Chaos and Finding the Fun

Melinda Messineo, Riverside/Normal City: Trees and Building Your Neighborhood Legacy

Awards for Neighborhood Leader of the Year and Neighborhood Project of the Year, trophies for the most trash and debris collected at the fall 2020 cleanups, and two scholarships to Shafer Leadership Academy’s premiere Emergence Program will be presented after a brief lunch break. In-person and at-home viewers will have the opportunity to vote via text message for the Neighborhood Leader and Neighborhood Project of the Year awards from the above list of presenters and presentations.

Mayor Dan Ridenour will again close the I.D.E.A. Conference with the State of the City Address beginning at 1:00 p.m. The Mayor’s presentation will be live streamed from the WLBC Newscenter Facebook page.

The I.D.E.A. Conference is organized by Muncie Action Plan, Shafer Leadership Academy, and Ball State University’s Office of Community Engagement and made possible in 2021 by contributions from the Community Foundation of Muncie and Delaware County, Ball Brothers Foundation, City of Muncie, Woof Boom Radio, and Ball State University.