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TEDxBigSky Sparks Connection, Opens Conversation

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By Amanda Eggert, EBS Senior Editor

The inaugural TedxBigSky brought powerful ideas to a town hungry for inspiration, inviting discussion and reflection among speakers and attendees. But the impact didn’t end there—subjects discussed in Big Sky at the event’s Jan. 28 debut continue to generate thoughtful conversation.

Collectively, the videos from TEDxBigSky have been viewed nearly 30,000 times. Ripples from the Jan. 28 event are still being felt and continue to generate goose bumps in viewers near and far.

Tune in—or watch again—as veteran CNN journalist Parisa Khosravi describes the struggle to communicate with her son Payam, who has autism and a very powerful message to share.

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The incredible story of “Mother Parisa” has been viewed more than 17,000 times and has helped connect families with similar struggles to a potentially life-changing resource.

In “Reaching Escape Velocity,” professional snowboarder-turned-rocket-scientist Andrew Crawford speaks about the stubborn discipline and passion that helped a tenacious kid from Montana achieve his dreams both on and off the snow.

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Now that Crawford is hard at work developing technology used in self-driving cars, strapping a snowboard to his feet is not something he gets to do very often. But TEDxBigSky brought the Crawford family together and they were able to hit the slopes together for the first time in 15 years.

Lukas Nelson’s stripped-down acoustic performance of six songs—three of his own, one of his father’s and two Eric Clapton covers—is interspersed with the personal philosophy on perspective and compassion Nelson has cultivated over the years.

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Before opening with a shiver-inducing rendition of Eric Clapton’s “Before You Accuse Me,” Nelson describes meeting Clapton as a nervous young pup who didn’t know what to do in his presence other than run up and give him a hug. Tidbits like that add depth and detail to the story of this rising star who has been described as wise beyond his years.

To view the full selection of talks delivered at TEDxBigSky, including “Think Like Your Future Depends on it, Because it Does,” by Ann Hermann-Nehdi, “Beating the Odds: Climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro with One Lung” by Linda Wortman and “Designing a Better Future” by Scott Wyatt, visit the TEDxBigSky Youtube channel.

Outlaw Partners is currently working to secure dates for the second annual TEDxBigSky in 2018. Stay tuned for updates.

Joseph T. O'Connor is the previous Editor-in-Chief for EBS newspaper and Mountain Outlaw magazine.

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