x = independently organized TED event

This event occurred on
July 19, 2014
1:00pm - 9:00pm NZST
(UTC +12hrs)
Tauranga, BOP
New Zealand

Well, well, well, what can I say about yesterday’s TEDx Tauranga Event? Nothing other than AWESOME would be the only answer!!

I know that we organisers had one heck of a great time seeing 9 months of work come to fabulous fruition, and it looked to me like the audience had a great time too? I know we saw many of you dancing in the aisles and up front, centre stage to Alice Sea and Aaron Saxon!

Wow, wow, wow was all we could say as the hours passed yesterday and ironically, the song “Happy” by Pharrell Williams kept repeating over the speakers during the hourly breaks. Taurangians (coining a new word here), organisers and audience members alike were spotted in various areas doing the happy dance to Pharrell as the day successfully unfolded. Being one of the many volunteer organisers on this event, I can honestly say I was so proud to be a part of this awesome enterprise!

The day started with a very eager sold-out crowd of 505 Taurangians, and various TED fans from around New Zealand making a break for their seats through the doors of the ASB arena at 1pm.

Head Organiser Sheldon Nesdale took centre stage to MC the event. His fun and light-hearted style of humour and enthusiasm set the mood for everyone to relax and enjoy.

And Sheldon made his yearly promise to the audience, which, would be fair to say that most were achieved:

You will hear new ideas
You will meet new people
You will cry at least once
You will laugh at least twice
You will clap until your hands are raw

All achieved except maybe for one – I don’t think there was too much crying, and if there was, it was crying with laughter from Sheldon’s jokes.

Sheldon also mentioned something about the guarantee of TED talks always leaving you with a sense of hope and inspiration, that we too can actually change the world in some unique way and make a dent in the universe.

Promises and guarantees were delivered through the talks of the incredible line-up of speakers and performances from the entertainers we were graced with. The 15-minute talks and entertainment left us changed, with much to think about. New ideas were sparked– ideas, that didn’t go away in seconds or minutes. These were ideas that stayed in our psyches, planted seeds and will maybe eventually move us into action in some place in our lives. The 9 talks all had an unintentional thread of themes that flowed throughout. And, this happened naturally in the selection of high quality speakers, based on who was the most profound. The overall themes were based around health and well-being, connection and caring—relating to the planet, people and animals. So the talks got us thinking, and the entertainers added FUN and creativity to the mix. We were dancing and laughing in the midst of it all.

So, did we leave feeling happy and hopeful and thinking about cool new ideas? You better believe it!

ASB Arena
Tauranga, BOP, 3110
New Zealand
Event type:
Standard (What is this?)
See more ­T­E­Dx­Tauranga events


Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Dr. Rodney Ford

Gluten – friend or foe? Did Dr. Rodney Ford, MB. BS. MD. FRACP, and a pioneer in the field of paediatric food allergies, convince us that nobody is equipped to digest gluten? Through decades of research, Dr. Ford believes that abundant health can be achieved by anyone who eats the appropriate foods.

Puawai Cairns

Puawai is a Curator at Te Papa Tongarewa. She took us on a journey discovering the motivations and emotions of the Maori Contingent at Gallipoli, and what she discovered with the help of social media.

Ben Warren

Through the story of his own journey to health, former professional golfer, nutritional and health expert Ben helped us discover why, as a society, we aren’t living longer, healthier lives and what exactly we could do about this.

Dr Ian G. McLean

From the wilds of Canada, through warzones in the middle east to small town New Zealand, Biologist Dr. Ian G. McLean explained how our ability to adapt our behaviour to whatever threatens us will allow us to survive in the face of adversity.

Marty Hoffart

Do you know how many discarded tyres there are in the landscape of NZ? What happens to your old TV when it goes to the dump? Marty is co-founder and trustee of The Environmental Education for Resource Sustainability Trust (EERST), Chair of the Community Recycling Network (CRN) and is the director of a Tauranga based waste minimisation consultancy Waste Watchers Ltd. His ideas on waste minimisation challenged our perceptions of how we deal with waste in New Zealand.

Vikki Kelly

Mindfulness is available to us all. We are losing our ability to relate to one another but with a few simple tools we learnt to reverse this process– We PUCKERED up with development coach Vikki Kelly to rediscover this lost art and improve our relationships with each other.

James Ross

How do you go from school drop-out to finding power in seeing words in three dimensions? James Ross is passionate about showing people how dyslexia can be nurtured by teaching 3D learning.

Dr. Liza Schneider

Dr. Liza Schneider is a holistic vet. She works hard to help in the pursuit of happier, healthier lives for our pets. Could we learn from these principles and apply them in our own lives?

Nicole Masters

Are you a “germaphobe”? We let Agroecologist, Nicole Masters, explain how deeply microbes affect everything about us and learnt why taking action to save the health of our soil offers a wide range of benefits not only to the environment but to society as a whole.

Organizing team


Tauranga, New Zealand
  • Sharon Hansen
  • Kimberley Cleland
    Event Director
  • Marcus Wilkins
  • Sachiko Kawakami
  • Phil Green
  • Charlotte Yates
  • Elyse Wyatt
  • Ciska Vogelzang
  • Raewyn Jones