Fri 8/18-Sun 8/20
Even though the Weapons of Mass Creation Fest (WMC) has grown in size since year one, it has always stayed true to the ideals it was founded upon.
“We believe in empowering the creative community to throughout the weekend while giving the attendees time to spend quality time together to build friendships that will last a lifetime,” says Heather Sakai, the event director for the Weapons of Mass Creation Fest, a three-day design, art and music conference produced by creative agency Go Media, which specializes in graphic, print and web design.
“Our goal is to provide our attendees life-changing content so that they can leave the conference inspired to live out whatever dream they’ve been holding onto and afraid to pursue. The close family atmosphere we’ve created, along with the grassroots, truly Cleveland vibe of the fest, makes us stand out from the pack. Additionally, WMC is very affordable as compared to other conferences of its type, which are at least double its price and up to the thousands of dollars.”
Jeff Finley, a former partner at Go Media, started Weapons of Mass Creation Fest back in 2010. He not only wanted to celebrate his passions of art, design, and music but also felt that Cleveland was lacking a conference that brought the creative community together. There were only a handful of speakers, artists, musicians and attendees at the first WMC Fest, but it sparked a grassroots movement that has grown and developed into something very special.
Weapons of Mass Creation Fest is known for pushing creatives to defy the hand they’re dealt. “We see the results of this over and over again,” says Heather. “For example, we have seen several of our attendees drop everything and start their own conference, as inspired by WMC. Because of this, Weapons of Mass Creation Fest has set the precedence for several design conferences you may have heard of or attended in the last few years.”
The new venue for the 2017 fest is Mahall’s in Lakewood, a place Heather feels is very genuinely WMC. “I’m really excited about our venue change this year,” exudes Heather. “We’ll be using the entire venue, and throughout the weekend, creatives will be spread through every inch of the space attending talks, workshops and panels, experimenting with augmented reality, live screen printing, chatting up vendors, enjoying food, listening to bands, and bowling, of course.”
Another cause for celebration is the number of Clevelanders that will be represented in this year’s lineup. “Many of our speakers, workshop leaders, panelists, and musicians live or are originally from Cleveland, and we’re proud to give them the credit they so deserve. Speaking of this year’s talent, I’m also proud to highlight that 12 of our 19 speakers/workshop leaders are women. In a field dominated by men, women are normally not represented as well as they deserve in conferences like ours. We’re working to change that,” shares Heather.
Although WMC is a design conference, Heather likes to refer to it as a big party for creatives. “Anyone who is interested in design, art, music or creativity of any kind will find the three days invigorating. After purchasing your tickets, I would suggest that attendees map our their schedule before attending and plan on making it to as many events as possible. If you can make it on Friday, definitely come when the doors open to get your free swag bag and attend our most popular event, Ink Wars. If you’re thinking of attending but would have to go it alone, I encourage you to show up. We have a whole host of WMC Fest alums ready and waiting to meet you and show you the ropes.”
“I am so honored to have had Jeff pass WMC Fest down to me upon his leaving Go Media to pursue his other passions because it is an incredible event that we had to keep alive. It only makes sense that this event is in Cleveland, home to some of the best art, design and music in the country. This event feels very authentically Cleveland, too, in its vibe and affordability. When I hear fellow Cleveland creatives have missed the fest every year, I gasp. This is a must-attend event!” Heather concludes.
Tickets can be purchased on the Event Brite Page, or by heading to the ticket link. Folks can purchase a general admission pass, which gives them the ability to attend all three days, or if they prefer, they can purchase single day passes to Saturday and/or Sunday. Friday evening and Saturday evening passes are also available, which get them into our evening festivities. Tickets to our workshops and our Cleveland Studio Tour can also be purchased on this page. These are seperately ticketed events.
Photo by Andrew Wells
[Written by Kendall Embrescia-Hridel]