VENUE: International Centre/Congress Centre, Mississauga ON
AUTHOR: Lianne Gravitis
Anita Schachter, VP of the Regional Gift Shows, which include Montreal and Alberta, offered some sound advice for anyone wanting to get into this industry. Beginning her journey within a small publishing company, Schachter moved her way into the giftware world by accident. Initially volunteering for a show held by her company, Schachter found she enjoyed this type of work and eventually became a full-time coordinator and show manager for various shows. Shows of such magnitude can be stressful and Schachter suggests that being a multi-tasker and a people person is an absolute MUST to succeed in this industry.
Facilities: International Centre & Congress Centre (provide space, retail food, cleaning services; parking)
Show Décor: Freeman Decorating
Bussing: Pacific Western www.pacificwesterntoronto.com
Registration: GSC Services & Conexsys
Security: GSS Security & Tonegar Security http://www.gss-security.ca/
First Aid: Tonegar Security (http://www.tone-gar.com)
Electrical: ShowTech Power & Lighting http://www.showtech.ca
Daycare: Umbrella Central Daycare Services http://www.umbrelladaycare.com/
Think Green at Your Next Special Event
by Sharon Bonner
Contrary to what many people believe, 'sustainable' doesn't automatically mean more expensive. Especially with special events. Less waste can also mean more savings. Bright Ideas' approach to eco-conscious events offers our clients a wide variety of options to make their event as earth-friendly as possible. We usually start by ensuring we divert as much waste as possible from landfills – recycling, composting, and finding alternatives to disposable items. Working with our vendors, we source eco-friendly food service ware, packaging and flatware. Through the use of electronic communications such as an event website, online promotion, invitations and registration we are able to reduce paper use. Bright Ideas can also assist with the purchase of carbon offsets if desired and can prepare cost-savings and environmental footprint reports, so that the benefits of going green can be measured.
Above all, we believe that sustainable options should be a choice… and a smart one at that. That's why we try to focus on those environmental initiatives that deliver real world benefits rather than just green-tinted window dressing. For an excellent overview of the various ways you can minimize the environmental impacts of your next special event, this guide prepared by the non-profit organization Bridging The Gap has a wealth of information and suggestions for events both large and small. You can also access Metro Vancouver's library of images and education materials, for signage and artwork you can use at your next eco-friendly event.
If you want assistance with an eco-responsible event, or need more information before choosing a sustainable special event, please contact us or take advantage of our easy-to-use quote request form. We'd love to help you find the best ways to incorporate sustainability into your next special event!
On July 16th, 2011, the Live Green Toronto Festival kicked off its 5th year at Yonge-Dundas Square in Toronto ON. Organized to generate awareness of the “environment, environmental programs, services and initiatives within the City of Toronto”, in a “fun, interactive, lively atmosphere,” one could not leave the festival without learning a lesson or two.
The festival was held at one of Toronto’s busiest intersections (with an estimated 1500 people per hour walking by the area on any given day), and celebrated the businesses and the individuals who are leading the charge to making Toronto (one of) the greenest cities in North America.
City of Toronto – http://www.toronto.ca/index.htm
Yonge-Dundas Square – www.ydsquare.ca/
The Laundry Tarts – http://www.thelaundrytarts.com/
Cathy’s Crawly Composters – http://www.cathyscomposters.com/
Live Green Membership Card – http://www.livegreencard.ca/
TD Friends Of The Environment Foundation – http://www.fef.td.com/
Done With Dolls – http://www.kidzworld.com/article/24699-done-with-dolls-band-bio
These Kids Wear Crowns – http://www.thesekidswearcrowns.com/
Hollerado – http://www.hollerado.com/
Classified – http://www.classifiedofficial.com/
Crash Test Dummies – http://www.crashtestdummies.com/#/home
God Made Me Funky – http://www.godmademefunky.com
680 News – http://www.680news.com/
CityTV – http://www.citytv.com/
The Delta Chelsea Downtown Toronto – http://www.deltahotels.com/
The Hard Rock Café Toronto – http://www.hardrock.com/
The Toronto Star – http://www.thestar.com/
t.o night – http://tonightnewspaper.com/
Inorganic Market – http://www.4self.org/inorganicmarket/
Bullfrog Power – http://www.bullfrogpower.com/
ISES Canada, some of its chapters and some of its members took home HUGE kudos at the ISES Event World Conference in Missouri this past weekend.
Congratulations ISES Vancouver wins the Spirit of Excellence for Chapter Communications!
Congratulations ISES Calgary wins the Spirit of Excellence for Member Growth!
Congratulations ISES Calgary wins the Spirit of Excellence for Member Retention!
Congratulations ISES Canada wins the Spirit of Excellence for Region of the Year!
INCREDIBLE CANADA! The ISES Chapters are on the Map.
Immediate Past Chair of ISES Canada, Eileen Bistrisky CSEP commented,
Thanks, to everyone for all the hard work that was put in to make ISES shine across the country this year. It is so great to see the collaboration that is occurring on both the national and chapter levels. To be recognized internationally like this against chapters and regions from around the world is truly an honour. If you aren’t already an ISES member, now is the time to join, as we gain momentum and continue to play a leading role world-wide
ISES Members also took home top honors in the Esprit Awards which recognize outstanding achievements in special events.
Best Corporate Event ($75,000 – $200,000)
YPO Chapter Graduation
Jocelyn Flanagan, CSEP
E=mc2 Event Management Inc.
Best Entertainment Production (Over $75,000)
Opening Ceremony of the X Paralympic Winter Games
Patrick Roberge Productions Inc (PRP Inc)
ISES is an international associations designed to foster education and professional development in the field of event planning. There are chapters in the USA, UK, South America, Australia and Asia,as well as three chapters in Canada; Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver.
By joining ISES, you instantly gain access to an elite pool of special events resources. Members enjoy exclusive discounts, business opportunities and promotion, and tailored educational information. Gain the extra edge needed to create events that go beyond expectations, far surpass your competition and impact your portfolio.
Immediate Past-Chair – Eileen Bistrisky, CSEP, Effective Event Management, Vancouver, BC
Secretary/Treasurer - Karen Eluck, CSEP CMP, KEP Events, Unionville, ON
Education - Sharon Barwick, Simply Elegant Events & Catering, Calgary, AB
Communications - Stacy Wyatt, Canadianspecialevents.com, Winnipeg, MB
Programs – Diana Hambrook, Donnelly Events, Vancouver, BC
Chapter In Formation - Peter Cornforth, Mediaco, Calgary, AB
Sponsorship – Rachel Mangal, aNd Logistix, Toronto, ON
Past President, Kelly Shannon, Peller Estates Winery
President Elect, Yvonne Dewar, CMP, Elastic Communications and Events
Vice President Member Care, Theresa Cragg Gatto, CMP
Vice President, Finance & Administration, Lee Anne Leckie, CMP, International Centre
Vice President Education Geoff Mak, CMP, Direct Energy Centre/Allstream Centre/Exhibition Place
Vice President Communications, Lynne Gale, CMM, Carlson Wagonlit Travel Canada
Director Communications, Vinita Borrison, CMP, CN Tower
Director Education, Marcelo DeOliveira, Hard Rock Cafe
Director Member Care, Janice Fendley, CMP, Absolute Conferences & Events Inc
Director Awards, Lynda Hoff, CMP, CMM, LNH Strategic Event Management
Director Special Events, Carla Olivier, Trump International Hotel & Tower Toronto
Director TEC, Jodi Spivak, CMP, Hotel Le Germain
Executive Director, Leslie Wright, Executive Director
President Elect, Leanne Calderwood, CMP, HelmsBriscoe
Vice President of Finance, Cynthia Douwes, BA, CMP, Certified General Accountants Association of Alberta
Vice President Administration, Lori Jennison, Holiday Inn Calgary
Vice President Communications, Anh Nguyen, McCarthy Tétrault LLP
Vice President of Education, Caroline Forsyth, Calgary Stampede
Vice President of Membership, Kathryn Cowling, Meeting Solutions Inc.
Director of Special Events, Nicole Langton, Mount Royal University
Director of Membership, Greg Jungwirth, Delta Hotels and Resorts
Director of Education, Marnie Ballane, Speakers' Spotlight
Director of Communications, Peter Maher, PSAV Presentation Services
Chapter Administrator, Kyla Marie Arneson, dmg events
- Why the iPad is the go-to device for event marketers
- How iPad apps can extend engagement over time
- Tips and best practices for leveraging iPads to better engage consumers, B2B audiences and employees
- A review of the top 5 tablets
- What event professionals need to do to get started
Benchmark Hospitality International
Overall, Benchmark Hospitality's properties are cautiously optimistic at the start of 2011, projecting moderate growth with marginal increases in spending.
Looking a bit further afield, indications are that 2011 will have a strong finish, and 2012 may just be a great year.
Trend #1 Business Is On The Move Again!
Business travel (group and individual) is up in 2011 across Benchmark Hospitality's portfolio. Booking pace for most properties is outperforming the previous year's results. Customers remain highly rate conscious and value focused, though, and demand speed – as in fast Internet connectivity!
Trend #2 Planners Want Choice
The Complete Meeting Package, sacrosanct for decades, could now be called the Flexible Meeting Package. Planners still see the value of all-inclusive packages – they just want these customized to suit the needs and budget of their particular meeting. How hotels and conference centers develop and structure packaging components in the future will be influenced by this trend.
Trend #3 Heads In Beds
The plan for 2011 is growing occupancy while maintaining rate integrity, which is generally comparable to last year. To win business, properties are negotiating added-value options, such as complimentary Internet access, cancellation/attrition flexibility, forgiving resort fees, and more.
Trend #4 The Pace is Positive
Booking pace for meetings may finally be turning the corner. Although still short term, more companies are responding to improved economic conditions by projecting increased business needs in every business quarter, especially the latter part of the year – and even into 2012! Along the way, meetings are increasing in quantity, but not size.
Trend #5 Only Connect
Social Media usage is beginning to take hold within the meeting planning industry, but is not dominating communications like it is for the general public worldwide. The exceptions are LinkedIn and YouTube, with groups videotaping sessions and posting these online for the benefit of their colleagues back at the office, for reviewing key points going forward, and for encapsulating business concepts addressed in the meeting.
Trend #6 Cost Still Trumps Green
Being green remains important for many planners who look for properties to have these initiatives in place. In fact, today it's generally assumed they do. Government meetings demand it, as does, increasingly, the pharmaceutical industry. But, if asked to choose between being green or providing maximum cost savings, budgets still take precedence in 2011!
Trend #7 Taking Time For Teambuilding
Demand for teambuilding is back, though unevenly so throughout the country. Where there is demand, planners want unique programs delivered within tight budgets. These teambuilding programs may be culinary events, set up as Reality TV programs, or utilize other clever concepts. It's not likely, however, a ropes course will be involved.
Trend #8 Why So Serious?
Properties are at last seeing the return of recreation and entertainment as part of the meeting experience. To say there is a "comeback" would be stretching things. But inquires for entertainment options as diverse as theme parties, comedians, "meeting camps" and "think tanks," etc., are coming from groups interested – for the first time in a long time – in offering more than a strictly serious meeting experience.
Trend #9 They're Back!
Insurance, financial, consulting, high tech, healthcare and education … the tried and true industries that have supported the conference center hotel industry over the past decades. As companies within these industries step up hiring, training related meetings are becoming more prevalent. Although somewhat regionally driven, after a brief and deep retreat nationwide in 2009-10, these industries are coming back.
Trend #10 It's No Longer Anyone's Guess
Planners and meeting customers learn about locations, destinations and individual properties through surfing the Internet! Whether searching Websites, perusing online magazines, reading destination coverage, viewing hotel advertising, or receiving an e-blast, it's the Internet! Period. With iPads, smart phones and Apps becoming readily available to promote nearly every product and service today, communicating with customers online has never been more available, more complex, or more important.
June 12, 2011, Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto
Lianne Gravitis, OnSite Reporter
Walking into The 21st Annual Toronto Taste June 12th, 2011, was like walking into a foodie’s most amazing dream. Organized by Second Harvest, with presenting sponsor The Daniels Corporation on board for its 16th year, Toronto Taste has grown to be the go-to culinary event of the year. With over 1500 guests walking through the gates this year (many of whom are repeat attendees), one can say that the evening was another great success. Money raised for this event is put towards Second Harvest’s food donation programs, where fresh, donated, surplus food from grocery stores, restaurants, hotels and markets is distributed to 250 social service programs around the Greater Toronto area. Last year alone, Second Harvest rescued and provided 6 million pounds of food and has in its 21-year history, provided over 8 million meals. The target fundraising goal this year is $665,000, which is $35,000 up from last year.
Held at the Royal Ontario Museum, once again, the scene was electric as guests started to file into the venue. Under several large tents set up on the street outside of the ROM, incredible scents wafted through the air as 60 chefs, and 35 beverage purveyors started to create their delicacies for the evening. Striving to “keep the event current”, says Jordan Mlynek, (event and campaign manager of Toronto Taste since 2010), organizers ensured they stayed “on top of who’s hot in the restaurant industry…who’s creating buzz, and who’s doing something interesting. “ Scarpetta, Buca, Grace and Woodlot were some new faces this year, while many others such as famed chef Mark McEwan, Dufflet Pastries and Mark Tuet, who have been loyal to the cause since the first year, set up shop once again.
Small tables covered with crisp white linens and beautiful floral centerpieces were placed around the stage for people to sit and eat as they listened to the sounds of the Michael Theodore Band and Soul Stew. Bright green signage for the entrances, and the food and beverage signs, plus the florals were the only décor Second Harvest focused on. It allowed them to cut costs and focus more on the cause. Throughout the night, guests dined on such things as tuna sliders with wasabi peas from Rosewater, venison tarter from Bohmer’s, Beef Brisket Biscuits from Café Belong, and pickerel with bacon and potato from Michael Smith’s station. To wash down these exquisite samples, many beverage choices were at hand such as beer from Cameron’s Brewing Co., a chardonnay from Tawes Winery, a soothing herbal tea from The Tea Emporium or a special coffee from Arcaffe. To satisfy that craving for something sweet, desserts included such things as delicious red velvet cupcakes from Pauline’s Kitchen or Super Vanilla Verrines from Dufflet Pasteries.
Sponsored by Sun Life Financial, the music stage played host to a wonderful live auction later in the evening, called by auctioneer Stephen Ranger and co-hosted by Bob Blumer. Auction items included a trip to The Galapagos (courtesy of GAP Adventures), and a wine adventure to Portugal (courtesy of Transat Holidays and Marlin Travel), plus many other extravagant prizes. Inside the elegant, dimly lit museum, more stations were set up from places like Rosewater, Great Cooks at Eight and Creemore Springs Brewery, where the general admission guests could collect samples and check out the silent and wine auction items.
Starting to plan in November of 2010 with a passionate group of 25 committee members and over 400 volunteers of all ages helping out, this year’s goal was to ensure that Second Harvest was in the forefront of the guest’s minds throughout the evening. They really wanted to “connect the event with the cause”, said Mlynek, to remind guests why they are attending the event in the first place. Due to Toronto Taste becoming such a large event that includes the most prominent culinary names in the business, the reasoning behind the event generally gets forgotten. To execute this goal, organizers decided to place a message on the first thing the guests would see: the invitation. With a caption that read: “Be a Taster. 1 ticket to Toronto Taste provides 250 meals to those in need”, this not only allowed the guest to see the impact their donation made, but also made them feel like they are part of a “movement” participating as a “taster”. Additionally businesses were not allowed to bring their own signage to first eliminate a “trade show” look, and also to ensure that people know it’s a charity event not a trade show. Businesses could dress up their table any way they’d like, which helped out with décor as well.
To create exposure outside the event, a giant Twitter wall was created inside the main gallery. A contest cleverly named, “So You Think You Can Tweat”, was created for a chance to be a roving twitter reporter for the evening. Restaurants and guests were also asked to tweet using the hashtags #torontotaste and #imataster. Tweets could be seen in real time on the Twitter wall throughout the evening. Toronto Taste ended up being a trend in Canada and in Toronto on Twitter due to the contest.
Other marketing strategies included radio and print ads (National Post was a major sponsor), ads in Dine.TO, bus shelter ads, media sponsorship through The Food Network, and chef videos posted on You Tube and on the Toronto Taste and Second Harvest websites. Chefs also released the videos on their own Facebook and Twitter pages as well. Foresight Communications produced the videos and all who was involved donated their time. To build a database creatively, a photo booth provided by Booth (and sponsored by Daniels Corporation) was available for guests who wanted to take pictures with their friends, co-workers, and one of the chefs. Each guest had to provide their name and email before they could take a picture.
Some Sponsors (full list is on www.torontotaste.ca under supporters):
Dine.TO – www.dine.to
National Post – www.nationalpost.com
Foresight Communications – www.foresightinc.com
The Daniels Corporation – www.danielshomes.ca/splash_html.
Sunlife Financial – www.sunlife.ca
Fiat – www.fiatcanada.com
The Food Network – www.foodnetwork.ca
Booth – www.getthebooth.com
Event Rental Group announced today that it has agreed to acquire Micki’s Luxury Linen and Draping. The company intends to integrate Micki’s operations into the Exclusive Affair Rentals division of Event Rental Group. Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed.
“This represents the next phase in bringing the highest level of service and quality to both our respective clients,” says Greg Halton, President and CEO of Event Rental Group. “Our group seeks to provide solutions for our clients that include enhanced product selections, and a more complete rental package. We provide tent-top to table-top, and everything in between, and we can now add exciting linen and draping coordinates to that equation,” he says.
Halton, who has been President of Event Rental Group since 2004, will work closely with Micki and Alan Cramer, the founders of Micki’s, to ensure a smooth transition for both clients and employees. Both Micki and Alan Cramer will remain with the company going forward. “We believe Event Rental Group will provide a larger and more diverse client base for Micki’s fabrics, and we see excellent synergies between their company and ours”, says Alan Cramer. “We will work to capitalize on the specific talents of each company,” adds Halton, “but service and quality will remain our highest priority.”
Event Rental Group’s capabilities will now include complete tenting solutions (including decorative draping elements), the largest selection of table-top rental items in Canada, a large and widely diverse specialty linen program, and the industry’s most extensive fabric selections for draping any event. Event Rental Group remains the destination choice for professionally managed special events.
About Event Rental Group
Established in 2004, Event Rental Group operates 2 divisions, Exclusive Affair Rentals and Advanced Tent Rental. Both companies are the leaders in their respective segments of the Canadian special event industry. Event Rental Group is the largest event rental company in Canada, and the sixth largest in North America.
About Micki’s Luxury Linen and Draping
In business since 1998, Micki’s Luxury Linen and Draping is Toronto’s leading provider of specialty linen and draping. The company is renowned for is its ability to execute challenging installations under difficult time constraints.
For more information please contact:
Event Rental Group
Micki’s Luxury Linen and Draping