Canada’s 150th birthday demonstrates the value of themes in event planning

July 1, 2017

Canada is celebrating its 150th birthday this year.

Canada is celebrating its 150th birthday this year.

As the country draws closer to the 150th anniversary of its confederation on Canada Day, businesses across the nation are using the theme in marketing and events to connect with consumers while marking an important milestone.

Canada’s 150th Birthday

One of the groups that’s seen success from combining the holiday with an event is the Toronto Blue Jays. The baseball franchise celebrated Canada’s 150th anniversary at the Jays Care Foundation’s ninth annual Curve Ball. The foundation works to enhance outcomes for underserved youth by teaching life skills through baseball, aiming to create a “level playing field” for the children of Canada.

With the full roster in attendance, as well as 1,300 guests, the event featured faux maple trees, a photobooth, centerpieces designed by the program’s children, poutine and impressive audiovisual elements, enabled by FMAV Toronto. The gala was tied together by thematic decor that featured moose, loons and, of course, the Canadian flag.

“When you think of Canada, you think of moose and beavers. We wanted to use that theme and incorporate fun and playful elements,” Jays Care Foundation Manager of Events, Jenny Le, said in an interview with BizBash. “Because we fall under the umbrella of the Toronto Blue Jays, we also wanted to incorporate their look and feel… We [also] incorporated the kids since we’re there to raise money for them.”

The thematic event was a huge success for the foundation. In fact, Le reported that this year’s gala was the most impressive yet, raising more than $1.5 million to help the youth of Canada.

Multimedia and entertainment events

The Blue Jays aren’t the only group celebrating the country’s 150th anniversary. Multimedia entertainment studio Moment Factory is creating an underground multimedia experience in the underground light rail system this summer to celebrate the future of Canada and the reduction of greenhouse gases that the rail will bring. The free show, which immerses guests in a cutting edge audio visual experience complete with holograms, will play in the subterranean Ottawa Metro transit system for 10 weeks and is expected to open on July 15.

And a special treat for music fans – Bono and the Edge of U2 are performing on Parliament on July 1. The artists are not being paid for their service, but are instead calling it their gift to the country, a representative told CBC News.

Elsewhere, other entertainment events will be held to coincide with Canada 150, including Electric Island, the Escapade Music Festival and a free Deadmau5 concert in the Halifax Commons. Each event will cater to fans, families and those looking to celebrate the country’s auspicious birthday.

The value of event themes

Celebrations like these that leverage Canada’s 150th birthday reflect the effectiveness of timeliness when choosing the theme of an event. Finding a relevant occasion – be it a season, historical anniversary or current affair – that can tie together every aspect of your event creates a product that is pertinent and up-to-date, wowing attendees and attracting the business of clients.

But the event theme isn’t just about wow factor. While this element of your event does stoke interest, it also sets the tone of the space and creates an opportunity to clearly advertise the key objectives of the gathering. For example, a spring-themed event may represent new beginnings if a company is rebranding in April.

As an event planner, a theme can also help you better understand the needs of your clients. If you know that a company wants to celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday, for instance, the color scheme, motifs and tone are clearly laid out from the beginning, limiting the chances of miscommunication. You can then nail down the technical details, such as audio visual elements, catering and seating.

Whether you’re planning a small business meeting or an elaborate gala, agreeing on an appropriate theme from the beginning can create a memorable event for all the parties involved.