5 reasons to attend imerge2019 on August 28. Celebrate Alabama’s past, present, and future role in the space race


Astronaut standing on surface of moon
Astronaut Edwin E. Aldrin Jr, poses next to the US flag during the Apollo 11 mission (Photo via NASA)

The Economic Development Partnership of Alabama (EDPA) will host its third annual imerge event on August 28, at Iron City, in Birmingham, Alabama.

The theme of imerge2019 will be “Alabama’s Next First”. The event will explore how Alabama innovators are building its future and will honor those who led the way to landing on the moon 50 years ago.

Reserve your ticket today.

Imerge2019 to celebrate Alabama’s potential

In anticipation of the exciting event, Steve Spencer, President of the EDPA said,

“Alabama was a key piece of the moonshot in 1969, and the state has the potential to contribute to the “Next First” innovation, whether it’s in space, medicine, agriculture, automotive, or one of a dozen other sectors. imerge will celebrate the state’s potential and its past achievements.”

5 reasons to attend imerge2019 ‘Alabama’s Next First’


1) Meet today’s innovation leaders at the Alabama Launchpad Pitch Finale

Alabama Launchpad logo. Cycle 3 finale will be held in front of an audience who attend imerge2019
Alabama Launchpad is a program of the Economic Development Partnership of Alabama. (Photo via EDPA)

Six Alabama startups will compete for a total of $150,000 in early stage investment during the Alabama Launchpad Cycle 3 Finale.

Alabama Launchpad helps high growth companies ‘start, stay and grow’ in Alabama while supporting, advocating and recognizing entrepreneurship statewide.

One concept stage company will win $50,000, while one seed company will receive $100,000.

Finalists for this competition will be announced soon.

2) Guest Speaker: Lieutenant General Steven L. Kwast

Lt. General Steven L.Kwast will be the keynote speaker at imerge2019
Lt. General Steven L.Kwast (Photo via EDPA)

imerge2019 will feature a panel of educators and innovators who will explore how Alabama is building its next leaders in the fields of science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and the arts.

Keynote speaker, Lieutenant General Steven L. Kwast, will explain how Alabama can again be at the forefront of the next space race.

“Our destiny as Americans is in space. But we must act quickly if we want to shape that destiny for the good, before others shape it for us,” Kwast said in an Opinion piece for POLITICO.

3) Honor Alabama’s and America’s space pioneers for their lifetime achievements in innovation

Each year, the EDPA support and recognize Alabama’s greatest innovators and leaders.

At this year’s imerge, the EDPA will also honor and celebrate Alabama’s contributors to one of mankind’s greatest accomplishments – the 1969 moon landing.

Dr. Wernher von Braun, chief architect of the Saturn V rocket that propelled Apollo 11 to the moon.

Dr.Von Braun served as Director of the Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville between 1960 and 1969, during which time, NASA employed engineers, scientists and others from 65 of the 67 counties in Alabama.

Plus, imerge2019 will highlight the many accomplishments of women who worked on getting America to the Moon, all who broke glass ceilings by working on this improbable mission.

Dr. Joyce Neighbors; the first woman to join von Braun’s team in a technical role, and mathematicians, aerospace engineer, and human computers Dorothy Vaughan, Dr. Katherine Johnson, and Mary Jackson, will be honored along with Dr. von Braun, with awards for Lifetime Achievement in Innovation.

4) Listen to the Dark Side of the Moon – live!

Black Jacket Symphony performing Pink Floyd
Black Jacket Symphony will perform Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon (Photo courtesy of Andres Berrios)

The program will include a live concert by The Black Jacket Symphony who will perform Pink Floyd’s “The Dark Side of the Moon” in its entirety and in surround sound!

It will be a sonic and visual feast of rock and roll magic, with the accomplished band of musicians (who have performed to over a million people) also performing a limited set of Pink Floyd’s greatest hits.

5) See Apollo 11 – The Director Cut

Apollo 11 film documentary poster
See Apollo 11 – The Director’s Cut at imerge2019 (Photo via EDPA)

See, hear and feel the historic mission to the moon with the Director’s Cut of Todd Douglas Miller’s Apollo 11 Documentary, on 4K screens in surround sound.

Featuring never-before-seen, unedited footage of NASA preparing for the mission, the documentary reveals the personal lives and experiences of Commander Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins. Apollo 11 documentarians Robert Pearlman and Stephen Slater will also be at imerge2019.

Get your tickets for imerge2019


imerge2019 hosted by The Economic Development Partnership of Alabama is being held Wednesday, August 28, at Iron City, Birmingham, AL.

Early bird tickets start from $75 and VIP tickets for $125 are available HERE

Event schedule: 3.30PM – Doors open. 4PM – Alabama Launchpad Finale. 5-10PM – Networking, plus Black Jacket Symphony performs Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon, Awards for lifetime in innovation, Apollo 11: The Director’s Cut, Keynote Speaker: Lt. General Steven Kwast.

Related – Grown from a seed that orbited the Moon in 1971. See Birmingham Botanical Gardens’ Moon Tree

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AlabamaLaunchpadEDPA 5 reasons to attend imerge2019 on August 28. Celebrate Alabama’s past, present, and future role in the space race
Jon Eastwood
Jon Eastwood

Originally from Wales (UK) and a fluent Welsh speaker. Longtime sustainability and recycling champion. Former county recycling manager in the UK. Career highlights include introducing innovative recycling systems and achieving a point where households throw out trash just once a month. Competed in international coastal rowing championships and followed Wales throughout Europe in their Rugby and Soccer endeavours.

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