By Brenna Parker
This past summer, I interned for the Lewis Center Business Association for their July 4 event, the LC Summer Bash and Fireworks. The LC Bash’s main event was a concert featuring headliner, multi-platinum recording artist Gavin DeGraw and featured local bands New Hollow and Liberty Deep Down.
My role was to help with the community promotions, marketing and day-of events. As interns we were given odd jobs and tasks. One random task was to get Gavin and his band bath towels. We dropped everything to run to a store and get $200 in assorted white bath towels and other items. We drove the musicians around the stadium on golf carts, went on food runs for New Hollow and sold merchandise for Liberty Deep Down.
Prior to the event, I promoted and handed out promotional materials at community festivals and events throughout the summer to spread the word about the concert. This included promoting the event online on local and statewide event databases and social networks.
The event itself had multiple components going on at the same time, including live appearances from The CW stars Alissa and Cameron and a live on-site radio broadcast from Mix 107.9 throughout the night. The stadium was filled with food trucks, concessions and other events for families.
The LC Summer Bash & Fireworks was an impressive community event. It was the concluding event of the Olentangy July 4 Celebration, which began with the Freedom 4 Miler run and annual Orange Township Parade. A portion of the event proceeds was donated to Honor Flight Columbus, a nonprofit organization that recognizes and celebrates World War II and Korean War veterans by flying them to Washington, D.C. to visit memorials dedicated to their service.
This year the LC Bash went through a complete overhaul, after it changed venues it introduced a concert, festival and fireworks display. This event was unique because it was held at my alma mater and the programs manager Adam Piccin, an Otterbein University PRSSA member, is a close friend of mine that I did journalism with in high school. My favorite part of this experience was having the opportunity to meet and interact with the musicians and learn event production.
After working this event, I learned a few takeaways:
1. Read and know what is in your artist’s contracts. If it is in writing that the headliner or entertainer is to receive something or have in their green room, make sure you know that material prior to the event. If a manager or representative for one of your clients is requesting something, accommodate their needs as best you can.
2. Know the emergency response plan. If something is to go wrong, just know that there are thousands of people in your venue, know what to do if something could go wrong.
3. Train and educate your volunteers about the event. Volunteers will be asked a ton of questions from people at the event. “Where is this? When is that?” Make sure you let them know the answers to these frequently asked questions that may come up.
By Erin Zaranec
PRSSA Kent hosted our annual Homecoming Silent Auction on Friday, Oct. 2 and Saturday, Oct. 3. Let me just start off by saying – it was a HUGE success!
We raised a total of $5,394 towards chapter programming and sending 14 representatives to National Conference in November. It was amazing to say the least! Two milestones were reached for the chapter: we raised the largest sum of money we ever have in ten years of hosting the silent auction and we are officially sending more representatives to Conference than ever before!
When I started serving as the Co-Vice President of Fundraising and Community Outreach, I had no idea how much work went into planning a fundraiser. We contacted approximately 200 businesses and auctioned off 53 baskets over the course of the weekend. Since the start of the school year, I have been running around Franklin Hall like crazy, coordinating donation pick-ups and calling more businesses than I can even remember.
Generous donors stepped in at the last minute, including President Beverly Warren, who donated two poems that she wrote and signed herself and a lunch with her and four JMC students.
Over the weekend, Thor Wasbotten, the Director of JMC, played the role of auctioneer at the end of each day. The auctions were full of bidding wars, laughs and plenty of happy tears (well, most of those came from me). The words “thank you” cannot be repeated enough to everyone that donated to our chapter this weekend.
Within the past few weeks, officers and committee members have gone above and beyond to ensure the success to auction and everyone came together for a great day. Now, we can all go off to Conference worrying more about networking than about our credit card bills once we arrive back home. I am so grateful and humbled by everyone’s willingness to help. Thank you to my fellow officers and wonderful committee members, I would have lost my mind without all of you! And again, thank you, thank you, THANK YOU to all of our amazing donors.