by Bob Geary
I remember little SPARKcon when it was just a gleam in the eyes of Aly & Beth Khalifa and the rest of the Designbox gang. Goodness, gracious, now it's 5 years old and it's grown so much! It really is "igniting the creative hub of the South" — this part of the South, anyway — from the arts to music to fashion and design and, this year, a new CircusSPARK.
[A note: SPARKcon 2010 is the 5th annual. Upon consuming my fifth cup of coffee, I realize that the first one was in 2006, which would make 2010 its fourth birthday ... unless you count the year of planning that preceded the inaugural. In other words, 5th annual, and 4th or 5th birthday depending on your perspective.]
The SPARKcon website features an iPhone app and QR codes (if you have to ask ...) to help you navigate the literally hundreds of events in dozens of venues covering all of Fayetteville Street and some other downtown environs. It all unfolds this Thursday-to-Sunday, September 16-19. Here's a commercial to get you started, courtesy (to SPARKcon) of an N.C. State grad student named Chelsea Hedrick: