Get your geek on in the Bluff City

Geeks rule!

At least for a week — and that would be this week — with the inaugural Memphis Geek Week that continues through Saturday.

The brainchild of LunaWeb founder Dave Barger and a host other local tech aficionados, the movement is dedicated to creating and nurturing tech talent in the Bluff City.

That’s vital for numerous reasons, such as strengthening our entrepreneurial ecosystem by providing startups and other businesses with tech-savvy and skilled workers. A creative cycle that generates talent while at the same time attracting it produces economic benefits for the entire community. And that should bring out the geek in all of us.

There are lots of opportunities to get your geek groove on this week, beginning with the local Python User Group that starts off our weekday activities with a special Geek Week edition from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Monday in Room 171 in the C building at Southwest Tennessee Community College, 5983 Macon Cove.

There’s no cost to attend and food and drinks will be provided, but organizers need to know how many to expect so send an e-mail to ASAP if you plan on attending. The evening will either be a Coding Dojo or a project night — it’ll be decided by interest level and majority rules — so be sure to bring your laptop to participate.

Tuesday offers an open house for Mid-South Makers, a member-driven hackerspace devoted to science, technology, art and crafting where geeks can gather to share interests and work on projects. There’s no cost to attend, just show up at 2804 Bartlett Road, Suite 2, from 7 to 9 p.m. to learn more.

Additional details are available at

Get up early on Wednesday and hone your digital focus at “The Importance of Local Search Engine Optimization,” by featured presenter Mary Rabalais as part of the monthly Interactive Expedition meeting from 7:30 to 9 a.m. at the Holiday Inn at the University of Memphis, 3700 Central. Cost is $20 if you want the breakfast buffet, or $15 each for you and a friend if you show up with a first-time guest.

Seating is limited, so be sure to register now at

Looking for something even more cerebral? Then check out “Neuromarketing: Consciously Grabbing your Subconscious” from 8 to 9 a.m. on Wednesday at the Bartlett Area Chamber of Commerce, 2969 Elmore Park Road.

This is part of the chamber’s ongoing “Staying Ahead of the Curve” series and featured speaker will be Geek Week’s Dave Barger.

If you’re a Bartlett Chamber member there’s no charge, otherwise admission is $25 and you can reserve your spot by calling 901-372-9457.

At midday, from noon to 1:30 p.m., join leaders from the New Memphis Institute (formerly Leadership Academy) at “Celebrate What’s Right: Memphis’ Next Golden Age of Entrepreneurship” at the Holiday Inn at the University of Memphis, 3700 Central.

The program will include innovators from LaunchYourCity, Seed Hatchery and ZeroTo510 discussing some groundbreaking ideas being launched in Memphis.

The moderator will be AutoZone founder Pitt Hyde.

Admission is $25 and seating is limited, so visit to reserve your spot today.

Later on Wednesday, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at EmergeMemphis, 516 Tennessee, the Memphis Agile Practitioners Group will host “Retrospectives: Inspecting and Adapting for Agile Teams.” Newbie or pro, the discussion is open to all and more information is available by sending an e-mail to

There are several other events that are still being finalized, including a collaboration between Geek Week organizers and LaunchMemphis leaders, so make sure to visit for calendar updates as the week progresses.

Finally, the annual celebration of area entrepreneurship sponsored by the Mid-South Minority Business Continuum takes place from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Friday at the Holiday Inn at the University of Memphis.

The Robert R. Church Achievement Awards luncheon will honor local business leaders and innovators who have helped create a more dynamic community by producing and promoting economic development.

Reservations are required and seating is limited, so call 901-525-6512 to save your place.

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