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TEDx Manhattan Beach Draws Record Crowd

Nov 05, 2017 07:03AM ● By Jeanne Fratello
The sold-out TEDx Manhattan Beach event, held at Mira Costa High School on Saturday, drew a record-setting crowd of 1,000 attendees.

Attendees heard from a number of thought leaders and innovators, and then explored an accompanying expo with cutting-edge games, challenges, food, and new products.

Myles Spar, a "medical disruptor," kicked off the morning with a plea for patients and doctors to think in terms of "purpose-driven health" - the idea of focusing on "why" a patient wants to be healthy. "Doctors need to harness the idea of purpose and engage on the level of what matters to you, not what's the matter with you," he said.

Raul Polit-Casillas, a 4-D engineer, spoke about creativity and the creative process. "Design is driven by hope for something we didn't have before," he said, as he described how he and his team at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory are creating advanced woven metal fabrics for use in space through 3-D printing techniques. "Humans will always be inventing new things," he said, adding that during the process a person needs to "enjoy the journey - and the suffering - of creating something new."

Mira Costa High School senior Emily Angstreich spoke of living with depression and the stigma that mental health carries with it. She is the co-founder of Headstrong, a club that works to create a more open environment when talking about mental health, as well as what community members can do to help those around us.

Sebastien Gendry, "the laughter/wellness guy" then led the audience through a series of breathing and laughing exercises designed to improve mood. "Laughter is good medicine - We've known that for at least 3,000 years," he said.

In the interactive expo hall, Mira Costa computer science students showed off a variety of games and computer programs they had designed, while companies displayed robots, books, games, and new products. In the courtyard, participants could take part in a healing "sound bath," complete with gongs, Tibetan bowls, crystal bowls, Native American flutes, tuning forks, and didgeridoos.

The event also featured the debut of the new Ziip shuttle, which brought attendees from across town to and from the high school.

TEDx Manhattan Beach is now in its 8th year. Its lead sponsors are Manhattan Beach Education Foundation (MBEF), the Manhattan Beach Unified School District, the City of Manhattan Beach, and Chevron. The event is licensed by TED, the nonprofit that has made “TED Talks” known around the world.

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