Ack. What a term. Whatever you call it, though, it’s an important part of a meeting or event. Reviewing it after and asking, what worked? What didn’t? What could have been better? What would you do differently?
Although I’m writing this as editor, full disclosure is full credit for the planning and production our Best Of galas goes to our team headquartered in Minneapolis-this year event coordinators Dahlia Brue, Jenna Thill and Anne DeWolfe - plus all the outstanding industry professionals who sponsor the event and partner with us, several who have been past Best of winners, nominees, and/or Hall of Fame inductees themselves. So we already get a start on success right from the beginning. Truly, all seven of our Best of galas have been great events at wonderful venues, and the Masonic Temple was no exception. (Many thanks to Docent John Snider for the utterly fascinating tour of the Masonic prior to our editorial advisory board meeting.)
A few things that stood out for me and that I really liked: the striking linens and lighting fixtures Emerald City Designs selected for the tables. The mix of round, smaller square and high-top tables in the room. The mini-pig-in-a-blanket with beer “shooters,” pulled pork sliders, and the frozen hot chocolate shooters from caterer Thibault & Moore. The photo booth from Shutterbooth was still popular with attendees, and this year the photos came branded with the event name and in bookmark-style holders, a nice touch and lovely keepsake.
What could have been better: we all agreed the font size on the nametags was waaaaay too small.
Behind-the-scenes oops and almost oops: we ran out of blank name tag inserts, and the magazines were delivered just in the nick of time (day of the event). Thank you, overnight FedEx.
Awards events are tough to reinvent. We haven’t tinkered with the agenda too much because it works. What I love most about this event, and based on attendees’ reactions they do too, is that in addition to the peer recognition through the awards, it’s just a fun, no-pressure evening. If you were able to attend, thank you for joining us! If not, we hope you can be part of it next year; we have our sights set on Grand Rapids as the location. Stayed tuned.
(Laurie Burger with Rare Standard)
Thank you again to everyone who made this event another great evening, and congratulations again to all our winners and Hall of Fame inductees.
Michigan Meetings + Events
All photos by Russ Gordon