Planning Events Helps Raise Awareness

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If ever there was a month that well highlighted the various ways in which I help organizations to raise awareness of their missions by planning and promoting events, this is surely it!

On Sept. 30, Ruth Griggs and I attended an event at 64 Gothic St. that we helped plan for Clarke Schools for Hearing and Speech to call attention to its 150th anniversary and offer a look both at its history and current work in educating children who are deaf or hard of hearing.

A press release we sent out in advance of the event—held at the commemorative stone that marks the school’s original location in Northampton—was picked up in advance in the Daily Hampshire Gazette and Springfield Republican, and a Gazette writer and photographer were also on hand and told the story in print the Monday afterwards.

Rebecca Mullen crafted a story that captured the remarks made by alumni of the former residential program and more recent alumni of Clarke Northampton’s area preschool and mainstream programs, as well as comments made by staff and Mayor David Narkewicz. Photos by Sarah Crosby completed the story, which ran on the front page. The Gazette later also penned a wonderful editorial about Clarke.

Saturday, Florence Bank celebrated the opening of its new Hampden County Banking Center with a Dribble Parade, and Glenmeadow also has an action-packed month of events.

Led by a basketball Hall of Famer, the Dribble Parade featured 200 people dribbling basketballs who marched from the Boys & Girls Club of West Springfield to the new center on Union Street as the West Springfield High School band played Florence Bank’s “Always” song.

The parade and grand opening event began at 11:30 a.m. at the Boys & Girls Club, where Florence Bank President and CEO John Heaps Jr. spoke and presented club leaders with a gift of $50 per participating dribbler, up to $10,000. The parade then stepped off into Main Street from the club at 12:30 p.m. and proceeded down New Bridge Street to the banking center. More on that great event in a later blog!

Glenmeadow’s October events began on Oct. 11 at Glenmeadow with “Rock ‘n Talk: Young@Heart Film Q&A with Chorus Members,” a screening of the chorus’ award-winning documentary and a live session with chorus members. On Oct. 20, through its Glenmeadow Learning program, the life plan community will offer “Improv and Anecdotes: Lessons on Storytelling through Humor.” (Learn more about each program—and other upcoming programs as well—or register here.)

I work with organizations on event planning because educational programming—or an event that has some kind of community benefit, including entertainment and fun—helps to bring media exposure and, thus, raise awareness. This month is case and point.

Like Clarke, Florence Bank has also been featured for its parade in local publications—The Sunday Republican and the West Springfield Record, thus far, for the bank, and the Longmeadow News for Glenmeadow.

They are all leaders in their industries, and it shows.

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