It’s been an exciting couple of months over here. After our essay went live, we picked up a bit of momentum that led to a grant from Emergent Ventures and a small “friends and family round” to help fund some of our research.

Since then, it’s been heads down hosting conversations and doing research. One thing that’s become very clear is that each World’s Fair is a product of its time, and the next great World’s Fair won’t look like those of the past. If we’re going to succeed, the Fair needs to be reimagined.

To start, we’re drawing on lessons from the world of Imagineering and themed entertainment. With some help, we’re going to host “charrettes” — brainstorming sessions where you gather around an idea and let the creative energy flow.

Last week, we hosted our first one at the (infamous) Bradbury building in downtown Los Angeles. With a group of brilliant creatives (from organizations like NASA JPL, Disney Imagineering, Faraday Future, Gensler, etc), we spent a day discussing, dreaming about, and designing the Fair’s opening experience — our “Mainstreet USA of the Future.”

It was a blast.

While we ended up with more questions than answers, this session was a huge step in shaping the future development of the Fair and gave us experience hosting a creative charrette. It also framed the Fair as a creative project with a focus on the story (not architecture) and gave us the chance to work with a group of incredibly talented people.

What’s even better is that this was the first time we gathered in person to ideate around the Fair. From the minute we started, it was clear there was a unique and optimistic energy in the room — people were excited about the Fair and the possibility of the brighter future it could enable.

We’ve only scratched the surface and will get back together as soon as possible. If you’re interested in helping co-develop the next great World’s Fair, reach out directly or on Twitter.