Later today, I will take my first trek ever to “The Rock” (and no, I don’t mean Alcatraz!). It will be my first journey to Newfoundland. I am excited for several reasons—firsts are always fun! I am also excited because I have heard so much about the people, the welcoming, and the fun that happens. I am excited because I get to come spend time with my colleague Seamus O’Keefe on his home turf. It will be great to visit the infamous George Street. I get to go to the Brier while I am there—something I have never done. But what I am most excited about is the chance to listen, learn, and share through a session I am delivering for a group called Event Atlantic Summit.
I am excited to attend this event. I truly admire this group and the leaders who formed it. Atlantic Canada is often left to fend for itself. There are other conferences for the event industry, for the municipalities industry, for the sponsorship industry, but seldom are the Maritimes or Atlantic Canada included. SMCC has no chapter east of Montreal. There is no regional conference for sponsorship in Atlantic Canada. There is no real professional development for those who work daily in our industry and the event industry unless they want to incur the expense of a trip to Montreal, Toronto, or western Canada.
(It is important to note that the Western Sponsorship Congress® is operating with regional licensees who deliver this professional development program from a regional versus national perspective and are in discussion with two groups to possibly have such training and focused sponsorship professional development under the WSC® banner in Atlantic Canada soon.)
But I digress! Back to the point.
What I truly like about the Event Atlantic Summit is that a group of leaders took the bull by the horns and acted. If the national organizations would not come to the table on a regular basis, then an Atlantic Canada-made solution needed to be developed. And that is what they did. They wanted a forum where they could talk about best practices, issues, and opportunities. They wanted to be able to gather folks from events, municipalities, agencies, sponsorship, and marketing. Tourism and sport tourism are also a large part of the discussions. When others would not bring the content to them, they built their own event—and use both national speakers, and regional success stories and presenters.
Tonight through Friday is the 3rd Annual (Moncton and Charlottetown prior) Event Atlantic Summit. Congratulations to those who think and act as leaders. I am very excited to participate and be part of this event. It is truly entrepreneurial, maverick, and needed! You have struck a chord and are to be congratulated.
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