Each fall, the International Special Events Society’s (ISES) Minneapolis-St. Paul Chapter solicits entries for its Minnesota Star Awards in 16 categories. With the exception of the ISES Team Effort category, ISES membership is not a requirement for entry; submissions are accepted from anyone who plans, produces, or supplies to the Minnesota special events industry.
For 2008, all entries conforming to the ISES rules were submitted to the law firm of Hoversten Johnson Beckmann & Hovey, HY, LLP, in Austin, which ensured that basic entry requirements were met. The firm sent qualifying entries to the ISES Atlanta Chapter for judging. The three entries that received the highest total point score in a category were nominated, and the nominee that received the top score was declared the winner.
Twin Cities Business highlights ISES’s winning events in the following pages. Read on to see which local companies and events were judged the best!
TREND WEDDING 2007
Category: Best Use of Marketing/ Graphic Design
A local bridal association partners with wedding service providers to create an annual wedding package giveaway. In 2007, it was a $150,000 wedding experience set in a vine-yard. The look of the event and the effectiveness of its promotion was enhanced by well-designed stationery components—invitations, favors, welcome baskets, and media kits.
The vineyard venue and its French chateau–style winery inspired the use of a fleur de lis graphic element on the stationery. The color palette reflected the midnight blue and copper decor, and the typography chosen was reminiscent of a vintage wine label.
The invitations set the tone for the event by incorporating the blue and copper colors on ivory cardstock. Invitations were packaged and mailed in wine cork–lined wooden boxes with slide-out lids. The boxes were sealed with cigar-box labels—hand lettered with guests’ names—and a wax seal.
Similarly, the press kits were pack-aged in wooden crates lined with wine corks and padded with craft paper straw. Along with a press release, each kit contained an invitation, a ceremony program, reception menu, chocolate favors, and a bottle of wine.
October 2007 Wedding Fair
Category: Best Public Event Planning
The planners wanted to offer a shop-ping experience that differed from a traditional trade show—a boutique experience for 2,000 brides and their guests. The trade show floor plan was revamped, avoiding rows and rows of booths by grouping exhibits into quads and eliminating the 3-foot-high side panels. This created the feel of department store shopping.
The entrance was staged as a ceremony and reception setting, with birch trees lit in red, orange, and amber to reflect the “autumnal weddings” theme. A chiffon canopy was hung with crystal chandeliers. In the next section, a “chocolate ultra lounge” themed reception area featured a 25-foot-tall gold birch tree set in a 60-foot round table holding a chocolate fountain.
A “reception rotunda” with orchestra and dancers featured gold chairs, large flora’s in six-foot-tall urns, and set tables to showcase an entire decor concept. A “weddings couture” boutique setting, with a fashion runway, displayed upscale wedding gowns, headpieces, invitations, cakes, bouquets, and linens. An area for grooms was designed to look like a nightclub and had a full-service bar. The event’s main fashion show had a 1930s movie-palace look and was meant to offer the feel of a professional fashion event.