Venice Beach BBQ – NXNE – Honest Ed’s Parking Lot, Toronto – June 19th 2015

Originally Posted On: Lithium Magazine

By: Kat Harlton

Last Friday evening I headed over to Honest Ed’s Parking Lot to check out Rooftop Agency‘s latest collaboration with Jägermeister Canada and Exclaim Magazine The NXNE 2015 Venice Beach BBQ that featured DJ sets by Fucked Up, Real Estate and Tijuana Panthers.

I’ve never been to Venice Beach, but if it’s even remotely close to what Rooftop Agency created then I’m in! It was sunny, hot, and there was sand, lots of sand, palm trees, women on roller-skates, surfboards, basketball hoops, a lifeguard style DJ booth, gritty graffiti, free drinks and lots of Jägermeister shots.

Speaking with Rooftop Agency President Dave Videka about the inspiration behind the event, he mentioned that it was all about looking for unique opportunities and creating memorable experiences.

We wanted to create something people could relate too, something that they already have a preconceived notion about and get as close to that preconceived notion as possible. Our goal was to make you come to this event in Toronto, and for 4 hours be transported to something completely different.”

I mean, they’re all going to walk out of here after and go to shows, and hopefully they’ll leave with the feeling of having been to a beach in Venice and having experienced something unique and had a really great time.”

And although the music was loud and definitely a big focus of the event since it was for NXNE, it was clear that it was also about fostering community spirit, getting the city involved and creating a lasting feeling that attendees can take with them, so that they in turn can go back to their communities and create similar experiences.

It’s great to be able to go somewhere and have an event be amazing and it doesn’t have to cost much, but the value to the community is that everyone’s going to come out. If you work with the community, they’re going to come and support you, and not only that, but then you can get local vendors and artists involved who are willing to make an idea happen. I mean, we got to do Venice Beach here, how close do we get to Venice Beach in Toronto?”

Walking around the event after the interview, it was clear that Videka and his Rooftop Agency team achieved their goal. It was energetic, it was fun and everyone right down to the vendors were super friendly and accommodating.

I have to give a special mention to Rooftop’s Social Media Manager Desirée Gadea who was amazing, she went above and beyond to show me around the event and to make sure I had everything I needed. As far as NXNE events go, this was one of the best I’ve been to yet.

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