Events

Sponsorship Fundraising

Case-studies from Downtown Mesa Association, Tenderloin Community Benefit District, and East Cut Community Benefit District about nontraditional fund development strategies. Place management organizations are going beyond assessments and finding sources to support programs that build communities in their neighborhoods through activation, programming, economic development, and more.

Bringing People Back Downtown Through Marketing and Events

People are eating out, going to events, and traveling again… so why do some districts feel as alive as ever while other districts struggle to bring people back? In this presentation, leaders from districts of all sizes will share the placemaking, events and marketing strategies that have brought visitors, tourists, and even office workers back downtown. Learn why some audiences are reluctant to return, and the role districts can play in persuading them to fall in love with our districts again.

Rob Higgins Master Talk

Since 2004, Rob Higgins has promoted the development of community sports and led the Tampa Bay Sports Commission as the principal organization that bids on and hosts sports and entertainment events in the Tampa Bay area.

Street Show Artists Unite for Justice

Street Show Artists Unite for Justice was a virtual expansion of our street performance program that produced live streaming shows from our regular slate of street performers, as well as specially recorded and edited “Street Show Gems” that were taped at quintessential locations throughout downtown Minneapolis. Following George Floyd’s killing, all artist payments were matched by Mpls DID contributions to social justice organizations selected by the participating artists.

World of Winter

The World of Winter Festival is a two-month long festival that takes advantage of Michigan’s cold climate to provide interesting ways for people to experience and enjoy the season. This Festival aspires to make Grand Rapids a more active winter city, making Grand Rapids an active year-round city by hosting all activities outdoors in public spaces. All programming and activities are FREE, socially distanced for these pandemic times and geared for both families and adults.

Downtown Sioux Falls Burger Battle

Perhaps the best way to describe Burger Battle is to share the copy from DTSF’s website: Prepare your taste buds for battle! The 8th Annual Downtown Burger Battle presented by the South Dakota Cattlemen’s Foundation kicks off January 2, 2021 and will continue through the month of January. Participating restaurants will exemplify the breadth and variety of downtown dining by showcasing the classic American burger.

Shadows at Sixth

“Shadows at Sixth: An Elevated Halloween Drive Thru” is unlike any event seen in Little Rock before. Held in a multi-level parking deck in downtown Little Rock, this drive-thru, family-friendly event was created to bring joy and fun safely to Central Arkansans in a time of uncertainty and isolation.

Virtual First Friday

Downtown Ventures’ Virtual First Friday promotion boosted community support for creative-sector retailers affected by COVID-19 closures. When Downtown Colorado Springs’ monthly gallery hop was canceled, Virtual First Friday bridged the patronage gap, pushing online sales as well as social media attention.

O2: Outdoor Office

Rosslyn, Virginia is a community of over 25,000 employees and 15,000 residents who work or live in the buildings that make up Arlington’s iconic skyline along the Potomac River. Dozens of large, top-tier companies like Nestle, Microsoft, Deloitte and Gartner call Rosslyn home, so when the pandemic hit, the Rosslyn BID quickly began re-envisioning the future of work in Rosslyn, not only for employees, but the Rosslyn residents that were now working from home.

Make It Bright on Fifth Avenue

Fifth Avenue, the world’s most famous street and the centerpiece of New York City’s holiday splendor brightened the Big Apple like never before with Make it Bright, a new campaign that takes two-holiday staples – toys and lights – to a new level.

Halloweek

Downtown Vision designed Halloweek as our first foray into holding safe events and promotions during the pandemic. This multi-pronged holiday celebration allowed us to promote and support Downtown Jacksonville’s small businesses and to create socially distanced, family friendly events for Halloween week 2020. Three key elements composed Halloweek: Decorating Downtown, Driving Traffic to Small Businesses, and Creating a Socially Responsible, Family Friendly Event for the Community.

Holiday Movie Food and Drink Week

Downtown Norfolk Council produced the first ever Holiday Movie Food and Drink Week. For this special holiday celebration, Downtown Norfolk chefs got creative and had a lot of fun reimagining iconic food and drinks from everyone’s favorite holiday movies and specials. For one week from December 4-11, Downtown Norfolk restaurants put their own unique spin on recognizable food, drinks, and memorable scenes from holiday classics for a creative and delicious helping of festive nostalgia.

al Fresco off Main and Downtown Dash

The City of Mesa and the Downtown Mesa Association (DMA), introduced a great way to “extend” patio dining for all of the restaurants in the downtown Mesa District—no matter the restaurant’s outside capacity. al Fresco off Main is a fenced off area with plenty of outdoor, distanced seating where people can bring food they ordered from any downtown Mesa restaurant or their brown bag meal to enjoy their refreshments in the middle of downtown.

The Care Campaign

The Care Campaign is a collection of 14 murals that popped up in our Downtown Dartmouth business district in fall 2020. We worked with a member business to create a placemaking project that would encourage people to feel embraced and connected, at least in mind and spirit, while circumstances beyond anyone’s control make that physically impossible. We received feedback from people of all walks of life that the Care Campaign murals have brought them feelings of happiness and inspiration.

Shattuck East Renaming Project – Kala Bagai Way

The intent of the engagement process was to create a dynamic, transparent, unique, accessible and low-cost process to receive submissions from the community. Renaming a street is no small feat, especially in a City with a politically active population and a City that has a world renowned University with stellar faculty, graduates and staff.

Advancing Places: Holiday and Winter Place Activations

It may be summer but it’s never too early to start thinking about holiday events, lighting and winter activations. Join this webinar to hear how Downtown Grand Rapids, Inc. is embracing all seasons to make it a four seasons city. During the pandemic they curated a two-month long activation, “World of Winter.” This 2021 Pinnacle Award-winning project attracted over 400,000 attendees during the cold winter months. Next, learn about holiday and lighting programs from the Georgetown BID. And finally, Midtown Alliance in Atlanta will present how they have added onto their Midtown Bright program each year as it continues to grow.

Advancing Places: Innovative Events

City builders have been working hard to turn lemons into lemonade for the past six months. As summer winds down, marketing and events professionals are steadfast in brainstorming new ideas to keep their communities healthy and engaged during the coming months. Join this webinar to discover how two practitioners are working to both re-imagine their premier annual events and think outside the box for brand new district-wide activations.

Bringing Innovation to Sponsorships

The most unique and successful sponsorships utilize available assets such as events, initiatives, infrastructure and more to deepen a connection with the target audiences. If a BID is innovative and nimble when developing the sponsorship strategy and activation, both the sponsor and the BID will win. A strong activation is defined by the way the brand/sponsor, assets and promotional levers are used together to drive results and tell a larger story.

Placemaking & Events Roundtable

Has the pandemic paused your district’s placemaking and public events or have you been able to adjust to the new realities of physical-distancing and face-coverings? This roundtable conversation will focus on sharing new ideas and necessary innovations for pandemic-era placemaking and public events.

ACTIVATE

ACTIVATE is a series of pop-up celebrations of public art that take place in alleys and other underutilized public spaces in the Loop. ACTIVATE is free to the public, bringing Chicagoans from 74 unique zip codes to the Loop during times that are traditionally less busy.

Writing on the Walls

Writing on the Walls is an annual series of collaborative public art installations and events. At the inaugural event in March 2020, local, national and international artists simultaneously created two new landmarks in downtown Austin, including our city’s largest mural to date. This mural is located on the iconic Congress Avenue, 11 blocks south of the state capitol, and located at the gateway into downtown Austin.

Unbranded

Unbranded is an experimental pop-up shop showcasing the finest work of Dallas’ robust creative community. Sponsored by Downtown Dallas, Inc. throughout the past five holiday seasons, Unbranded brings together a unique, diverse group of vendors – typically local artists, artisans, and designers trying to expand their small, often online-only businesses – each year to provide a special, one-of-a-kind shopping experience for all Downtown residents, employees, and visitors.

Detroit Aglow

Each winter, the various departments within DDP work in tandem to light up Downtown Detroit – hence Detroit Aglow! The BIZ illuminates Downtown with seasonal lighting that enhances the physical characteristics of the Downtown parks and streets. The BIZ focuses on pedestrian, cyclist and vehicular gateways to make dark winter traveling brighter and safer. The DDP Parks team creates a season of programming centered around the tree lighting ceremony and the popular ice-skating rink.

’80s Mall Party

In 2018 we moved our offices into the old Main Street Mall in downtown Little Rock. In the early 1980s the building was full of retail stores and restaurants. However, the state of Arkansas wound up purchasing the building and converting it into a variety of state agency offices – but the interior remained untouched. Think glass block, black and white tile, teal paint and colors, neon signs, glass elevators and working escalators. It was a space screaming for a throwback ’80s party!

2019 Holiday Placemaking Initiative

During the 2018 holiday season, we saw a competing town center in our region offering holiday event content that was distressingly similar to ours – Shopping! Dining! Skating! Santa! We quickly realized we needed to take steps to truly differentiate and improve on our downtown holiday experience to make our downtown THE holiday destination.

BIG BIRTHDAY BASH

No parent wants to tell their child “no” to a birthday party, but in Memphis, a city where nearly a quarter of families live below the poverty line, parents may not have the resources to throw that dream birthday party. Watching families host small parties in our parks, we saw an opportunity to condense resources and throw the BIG BIRTHDAY BASH! Set on Mud Island River Park the event featured bounce houses, water slides, games, cake and more all for free and close to 2,000 people attended.

San Antonio Día de los Muertos/Day of the Dead Celebrations

Historically San Antonio has been home to numerous Día de los Muertos celebrations that would be hosted in parallel. Seeing an opportunity for collaboration, community leaders gathered the independent hosts to put together a united Día de los Muertos event that would make San Antonio a top destination for a Día de los Muertos experience. Partnerships with Visit San Antonio as well as community corporate sponsorships support allowed for a heavy marketing strategy to areas outside of San Antonio.

Merry Madness

The first Thursday in December is a BIG night in Portland, Maine, as MERRY MADNESS takes over downtown! This event is Portland Downtown’s signature holiday shopping extravaganza, bringing together 1200 guests and more than 75 participating businesses for an evening of joy and merriment like no other.

Charlotte SHOUT!

With more than 175 art, music, food and ideas events offered over 13 days, Charlotte SHOUT! delivered something new and fresh to the city’s residents and visitors. A diverse mix of local artists, musicians, chefs and thought leaders joined renowned international talent to make the festival an unforgettable experience. The event also included unique cultural experiences like a live Indian wedding ceremony, interactive artwork, and community discussion.

Travis Park Holiday Activation

The City of San Antonio partnered with The Rotary Club of San Antonio to bring an outdoor ice-skating rink to Travis Park for the 2019 holiday season to help establish the historic Travis Park as a downtown destination for visitors and locals while further promoting activation in public spaces. The City of San Antonio invited residents and visitors to celebrate the holidays at Travis Park with free, family friendly events.

King of Prussia District’s Restaurant & Retail Week Benefitting Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia

In 2014, King of Prussia District launched King of Prussia Restaurant Week. From the beginning, the restaurants insisted that the event benefit the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. King of Prussia District facilitated the partnership, creating branding/marketing and getting restaurants involved. In 2018, we launched a corresponding retail event and in 2020, the events grew bigger as we launched the Community Champion program and partnered with the school district.

Paw-Pup Dog Park

The Thelda Williams Paw-Pup Dog Park is a temporary activation in downtown Phoenix, created using a license agreement between the Downtown Phoenix Partnership and the City of Phoenix.

Alley Events & Activation

Downtown alleys—traditionally characterized as dirty and dark—present a unique opportunity for transforming unusual spaces into memorable public experiences. The Chicago Loop Alliance (CLA) pursued a broad placemaking program to activate underutilized public spaces (such as alleys). Termed “ACTIVATE,” the initiative transforms iconic Loop alleys into pop-up urban experiences. The events feature art, music, and more in unique urban settings.

Sponsorships, Marketing and the Controlled Chaos of Events

This session is designed to aid districts in navigating the ins and outs of event sponsorships and marketing. Learn about knowing what types of events best suit your districts, when and what to market, as well as how to capitalize on sponsorship opportunities. Case studies include Pittsburgh’s “Picklesburg,” Wilmington’s hurricane recovery events and Hartford’s multitiered space activation.

Public Art and Authenticity: From Beauty to Community, from Pretty to Political

Many place management organizations that began with “clean and safe” (and viewed public art as merely a re-branding tool) are now becoming sophisticated curators of culture, and serving as a counterpoint to the homogenization that often grows from economic success. This panel explored the tools for nurturing genuine partnerships with cultural organizations from different communities in a way that empowers lesser-known artists, connects disparate communities and develops an authentic urban core.

Event Planning, Advocacy and Economic Development Through Smart Data

We’ve all heard about smart data, but how does it play a role in public space activations? This panel of downtown experts will share how pedestrian data and engaging mobile surveys helped enable partners in San Francisco and Dallas advocate successfully to municipal partners, increase sponsorships in dramatic ways, enhance economic development programs and create special destinations.

Championing Iconic Downtown Infrastructure

Explore how BIDs and community organizations are initiating and advancing the next generation of imaginative park and transportation infrastructure projects that breakdown barriers and enhance mobility, create place, enhance livability and spur economic development for downtown. Featured projects include the Crystal City to Washington National Airport (CC2DCA) Intermodal Pedestrian Connection in Arlington, VA; Rail Park and Dilworth Park in Philadelphia; and the 11th Street Bridge Park in DC.

IMMERSE

IMMERSE is the annual performing and interactive arts event from the Creative City Project. 2018 platformed more than 1,000 artists and performers for an audience of 45,000 people. Creative City Project staff works with artists to create site-specific performances and installations in the streets of public spaces of downtown Orlando. IMMERSE 2018 connected residents of and visitors to Orlando with unique creative encounters that transform the way people see and experience the urban core.