So Much to Celebrate!
Time flies by when you’re having fun! This month marks the 12th anniversary of Ann Plans celebrating and serving with the nonprofit community. We celebrate all of you who have been part of making this such an exciting and rewarding ride!
We love every opportunity to help our clients celebrate, and along the way we have been honored to be part of helping organizations celebrate monumental anniversaries of 50, 100, 125 – and even 150 years! In the spirit of what Ann Plans has proclaimed to be “anniversary month,” read on for insights for elevating an event in an extra significant year.
Maximizing a Milestone Celebration
This article highlights some favorite elements from major anniversary events, most recently Goodwill-Easter Seals’ Gala for Good which last month celebrated 100 years of service. We hope these tips inspire new ideas for infusing your next event with both mission and fun. Remember, even if this isn’t a milestone year, your organization has so much to celebrate!
- Start the party early! Use your pre-event marketing to elevate the significance of your milestone year, and share the excitement through event collateral and social media. Goodwill-Easter Seals was bold and smart in positioning their 100th anniversary event as “the celebration of a century!”
- Create a grand entrance. The red carpet and champagne dress immediately immersed guests at Gala for Good into an environment of celebration.
- Leverage opportunities for new engagement. A significant anniversary year provides a great opportunity to invite individuals and businesses to be part of your mission. Gala for Good had 25 sponsors, ten of which were new supporters of Goodwill-Easter Seals!
- Have fun with your history! For Episcopal Homes’ 125th anniversary celebration in September, the organization’s history was shared through a short, one-act play performed by residents of Episcopal Homes and written by local writer/actor Dane Stauffer. Guests loved this special presentation!
- Share the vision. While significant anniversaries provide an important opportunity to honor history, focus the majority of your event messaging on celebrating the present and sharing an exciting look to the future. Your organization’s current and future impact is what will most energize and inspire your guests!
- Get creative with the numbers. When celebrating their 150th anniversary celebration, Lutheran Social Service identified 150 Great Neighbors, individuals recognized for their passionate service. Centerpieces at Gala for Good featured six numbers that represent impact including 600,000 which is the number of people served through workforce development over the last 100 years.
- Provide photos ops. Make it easy for guests to highlight your event on social media by providing an inviting photo backdrop and fun props.
- Make it memorable! You have just one opportunity to celebrate a significant milestone anniversary year, so focus on making every element of your event extra special. Gala for Good guests helped paint the commemorative mural featuring images representing mission, and they spun the wheel to answer Goodwill-Easter Seals trivia questions with the opportunity to win exciting prizes. In honor of the 100th anniversary, 1919 Rootbeer floats ended the evening on a sweet celebratory note.
A Holiday Celebration
This holiday season we’re having a blast covering the maternity leave for Mn Adult & Teen Challenge’s Events Director. Consider joining us at Grace Church in Eden Prairie on Saturday, December 14 for the 12th annual Christmas Concert featuring national Christian rock band Unspoken and the Mn Adult & Teen Challenge choir. Proceeds from the concert support Mn Adult & Teen Challenge’s mission to assist teens and adults in gaining freedom from chemical addictions.
As we approach Thanksgiving, we want to express our gratitude for your friendship and partnership. May you have an abundantly fun and meaningful holiday!