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Research and Innovation Oxford and Beyond

Creativity City 2024 takes over Uptown Park

Yearly event celebrates creativity in all its forms.

Volleyball with a very big ball
Research and Innovation Oxford and Beyond

Creativity City 2024 takes over Uptown Park

A dunk tank without water. A quilt that passersby fill with cotton. A volleyball game with a six-foot wide beach ball.

Welcome to Creativity City 2024.

Creativity City brings students together to design a “city” in celebration of World Creativity and Innovation Week. With the event, students share their creativity with games, activities and teachings about applied creativity and innovation. In 2019, the John W. Altman Institute for Entrepreneurship became the steward and international headquarters for World Creativity and Innovation Week, which involved 160 nations this year.

Starting on the Farmer School of Business front lawn in 2017, the event has grown and changed in different ways each year. This year, it was held in Oxford’s Uptown Park on Saturday, partially in conjunction with EarthFest.

“The week is a celebration of everyday creativity. So this is a celebration of this, the elaboration, the making it bigger, the making it more exciting and interesting,” junior emerging technology in business and design major and city organizer Jacob Shachter said. “Volleyball's cool, but how can we make it different in a better way?”

In addition to the dunk tank, quilt, and game, there was a fashion show, a mural created on site, performers, and boards for visitors to color, culminating in a concert to close the evening, all ideas that Shachter said were chosen not just because of how good they were, but how unlikely they were to go badly.

“We did this thing called black hatting, which is thinking about, ‘What could possibly go wrong? What sucks about this? What are we not thinking about?’” he said. “That Saturday was an eight-hour meeting, and then we met on Zoom the next day for nine hours. And we essentially planned this entire event out. Every detail, every question, every thought that we had, what we needed to do, all our considerations and to-dos, and everything like that.”

“I thought the experience was great. It was a chance to bring a different atmosphere to Oxford. Things can get very repetitive and stale here sometimes, So Creativity City was a great way to create a change of pace,” senior finance major Andrew Roberts said.

“I had the unique experience of being a participant with both the fashion show, via my clothing brand, and as an entrepreneurship student hosting the event,” he said. “For the fashion show I was never once told 'no' and was allowed to do anything that I wanted to fulfill my creative vision, something that is extremely valuable to me as an artist.”

“Creativity City was such an exciting place to be on Saturday. It was so apparent how passionate the students were about this event and how much hard work that was put into the weekend. I love how they got other organizations involved like UP Magazine, Miami University Fashion and Design, fraternities, and Hip Hop Crew to get other students involved,” senior marketing and fashion major Kelli Amburgey said. “I personally got to work for the fashion show this weekend as a stylist and as the Fashion Director of UP Magazine, and it was a great way to get my team using their creative styling skills outside of the magazine. The event was a breath of fresh air on a Saturday afternoon that gave the Oxford community an experience to spark their creativity and celebrate it!”

“Obviously I'm very happy of the way things turned out. There's been a lot of big wins. It's been a lot of hours working on this event, sometimes 70, 80 hour plus weeks, but it's been going nicely,” first-year finance major and organizer John DeCrosta said.

“Things like this are very valuable and I look forward to seeing what Creativity City can become in the future,” Roberts said.

“It's been a lot of early mornings, late nights, sleepless nights, but it's been fun,” Shachter said. “I don't think I would've gotten this experience anywhere else.”

Dancers in front of a Creativity City sign

Students moving a sign at Creativity City

Student painting a mural

Student in a dunk tank

Children and parents filling a quilt

Volleyball players under the big ball

Models walking in the fashion show

Students writiing on a glass board

Concert and fire twirler at night