As you read in our previous issues, BIG SHOW PRODUCTIONS is becoming a leader in helping clients create eco-friendly, “sustainable” events. Our expertise grows every time we plan and execute a conference or meeting, and we are committed to sharing our knowledge with you so that you too can create programs that are good for the planet while being good for business. In fact, we recently received a call from Intel to see if we could advise them on greening their scenic materials for their upcoming conferences. We of course said, “yes!” And the results were amazing!
The focus of this issue, therefore, will be sustainability – and how we can help make events more sustainable.
CEO and Founder, BIG SHOW PRODUCTIONS
IN THIS ISSUE
Today, you hear the term “sustainability” used everywhere – in government, in business, at your market, in your office – it’s the catch word of the moment. But what exactly does “sustainability” mean? Well, it depends on who you ask, but inherent in all interpretations of the term is one very basic principle:
To meet the needs of the present without depleting resources or harming natural cycles for future generations.
Why is sustainability such a hot topic? Put simply, it’s the idea of using only renewable and sustainable resources – or finding ways to reuse the resources you have – so that the cycles of growth will continue indefinitely. In other words, ensuring that the resources we use today will still be available in the future.
Recently, Larkspur Hotels and Restaurants secured BIG SHOW PRODUCTIONS to help them execute a conference for their management staff that imparted their vision for being a “green” company that incorporates sustainability throughout its business practices.
But you can’t have a conference on sustainability that itself does not embrace the concepts of renewable, recyclable resources, right? BIG SHOW applied these principles throughout the conference, and in turn was able to truly demonstrate to Larkspur’s attendees what sustainability is all about.
And with only a one-month lead time (a challenge to any event professional!), BIG SHOW pulled together the conference and was able to demonstrate that applying sustainable concepts to any event is always possible (even if the hours worked by the team would not be sustainable over the long term!).
Throughout its properties, Larkspur is launching its commitment to provide guests and clients with eco-friendly, socially responsible environments. This conference was designed not only to review the state of their business, but to launch this initiative among their hotel managers, restaurant chefs and vendor partners.
To do this, they had to define sustainability and demonstrate how they are incorporating its principles and practices into its business. These mindful tasks include:
- Using only organic, locally grown foods whenever possible in their restaurants
- Using locally-made products and local services within their region
- Working with vendors (like dry cleaners) that use eco-friendly, bio-sustainable materials and processes, such as recycled paper, water conservation, non-toxic fabrics, bedding, flooring, etc.
- Switching to bio-sustainable or organic products onsite, including cleaning supplies, personal care items, biodegradable coffee cups and flatware, and eliminating plastic bottles, etc.
Before the conference
Larkspur sent attendees two items to raise their awareness of important concepts prior to the conference: “The Green Book: The Everyday Guide to Saving the Planet One Simple Step at a Time,” by Elizabeth Rogers and Thomas M. Kostigen (featured on Oprah Winfrey’s booklist) and the DVD “An Inconvenient Truth,” by Al Gore.
At the conference
BIG SHOW brought its team of top creative thinkers to the task and created innovative and experiential ways to make the concept of sustainability a reality, including:
- The use of a recurring theme focused on sustainability – people, planet, preservation – that was featured in all materials, signage, speaking points and much more.
- A sustainability pavilion that showcased Larkspur’s partners – farmers, paper suppliers, dry cleaners, food suppliers, etc. – as well as sustainable and renewable products and services.
- An interactive “Wheel of Sustainability” that allowed meeting attendees to discover and learn through team interaction. Spin the Wheel and answer questions related to People, Preservation and Planet!
- Meeting give-aways made of sustainable or post-consumer waste material products.
- A conference program that included actionable items for attendees – and hard deliverables that would ensure the incorporation of the new sustainability philosophy into their business practices. This included the creation of teams at each property who were tasked to come up with innovative ways for the company to become sustainable.
According to Karl Hoagland, chairman and CEO of Larkspur Hotels and Restaurants, “It was so important that our Awards Dinner and State of the Business meeting delivered on its lofty objectives and helped us roll out our sustainability program to our employees. We fully accomplished this, and quite simply could not have done so without John and the BIG SHOW team producing the event. They brought a special mix of expertise, professionalism and service that is rare to see and special to experience. We cannot thank BIG SHOW enough for making this most important of events a huge and wonderful success for Larkspur.”