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Dawson participates in national hacking day
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For the second year, representatives from Dawson County will be participating in a nationally-recognized tech event.

The Next Generation Youth Clubhouse, in partnership with the Development Authority of Dawson County's marketing organization Beyond Connections, will be one of more than 100 locations across the U.S. on May 31 taking part in the National Day of Civic Hacking.

Sponsored by Intel, the event is "a significant opportunity for government agencies, businesses, nonprofits and civically-engaged individuals to work together to solve complex social problems," according to Development Authority of Dawson County Executive Director Charlie Auvermann.

"Thousands of participants are expected to gather across the globe to leverage new data sets from local and federal agencies to create impactful, technology-based tools and services," he said. "The initiative is based on a variety of event models including hackathons, un-conferences, block parties, maker events and free spaces."

Auvermann said that, because this is a grassroots initiative, local organizers such as Next Generation, with Beyond Connections, and the communities they are working with, are adapting these models to create their own, unique experiences.

"Local youth, along with their families, are gathering at the new Next Generation Clubhouse to use their diverse expertise and entrepreneurial spirit to make an impact in our community," he said. "The focus this year will be on research of sustainable projects such as hydroponic gardens and sparking initial interest in robotics for very young children."

These projects fit into the green and early youth initiatives set by the Next Generation Youth Development and the Development Authorities' longer-range strategies in Dawson County.

Some of the participating government agencies include NASA, the Census Bureau, Federal Emergency Management Agency, National Institutes of Health and Peace Corps.

The National Day of Civic Hacking is designed to demonstrate how the innovation community is active across America and deeply integrated across disciplines and geographic boundaries.