Downtown Colorado Inc (DCI) had our twelfth webinar of the series covering various topics on the commercial district response to COVID-19 and how people can support each other while maintaining the CDC’s recommendation of social distancing. Thursday’s call focused on creative event adaptations and tools communities have used during the pandemic.
The June 11 Call focused on Events Post-Covid 19. Colorado’s commercial districts, whether supported by chambers of commerce, business improvement districts (BIDs), downtown development authorities (DDAs), or other entities are struggling with fundraising and community building as social distancing requirements limit the way we gather as a community. The dialogue during the June 11 call brought together different leaders from different sized communities to share ideas and get the creating juices flowing.
DCI was pleased to showcase ideas for virtual events as well as in-person events. DCI highlighted a unique event concept developed by Brian Corrigan, the Farm to Spaceship Dinner, which was an innovation bringing together a restaurant, bartender, florist, two graphic artists, and a DJ to create a take out dinner and dance party on Mars. John Moore from Splashmob provided the DCI call participants with a demonstration of the new Splashmob app, but also highlighted the Farm to Spaceship Dinner with this new tool. DCI then presented two northern Colorado community leaders, Melody Christensen from Brush! Chamber of Commerce/Main Street to talk about their process of determining to do a Fourth of July Cavalcade since they are unable to have their traditional parade; and Bianca Fisher from Greeley Downtown Development Authority (DDA) presented Greeley’s Friday Fest which has gone virtual. Other communities who were on the call shared adaptations they are making as well.
Some of the key concepts and topics for discussion included the process for building more:
Extended outdoor space for events and business;
Virtual Events to engage and raise awareness and funding;
Drive - in Movies and Concerts and how this can work;
Bike events and diving into who is working on these areas.
June 11 Events Post-Covids 19
As a part of DCI’s resources, each week we make the presentations, links to partners, and highlights of the discussion available. Please review in more detail some resources from this week’s call.
Splashmob allows you to display your content on the phones of anyone that attends your live event and connects to your splashmob experience. Create a mobile show, and display it on the phones of anyone that connects to the show without the audience needing to download an app.
Splashmob is customizable depending on what you would like for your event, and it has a variety of features that show up on event attendees’ phones including videos, pictures, poll questions, animations, colors, a selfie feature, and more.
For more information and/or a demo, contact email@example.com
FARM TO SPACESHIP DINNER IMMERSIVE EXPERIENCE
The Farm to Spaceship Dinner is a unique take out dining experience in Denver created by Brian Corrigan. The experience incorporated collaboration from a restaurant, bartender, florist, two graphic artists, and a DJ. The dinner is a multicourse meal which comes along with an instructional video which helps carry out the space theme. The experience was available for three Friday sessions and participants picked up the kits at Somebody People in Denver.
Farm to Spaceship
EXTENDED OUTDOOR SPACE
Brush will be having a Fourth of July Cavalcade instead of their traditional parade. The cavalcade will ensure that everyone participating in the experience will stay in their vehicles and there will be no throwing of candy or water balloons. The route of the cavalcade has been expanded by 8 blocks to provide more space for social distancing, which includes passing a school and church which both have large parking lots. Brush will have their traditional art walk which expands from the library to the museum and has space to ensure people will be practicing social distancing.
Florence usually has their annual, well-known wet and dry parade for Fourth of July. The parade consists of two blocks, with one block being the dry block and the other one being the wet block. People on the wet block get soaked by fire trucks and also have water guns. To adapt with Covid, Florence is looking at the possibility of vastly extending the route to go into residential streets and main street to allow people to practice social distancing.
Florence Fourth of July Plans
Old Colorado City
Old Colorado City has come up with the event Red, White & Cruise for the 4th of July which will feature a classic cars cruise through closed streets. The closed streets allow for expanded seating so people can practice social distancing.
Old Colorado City will also have a special event Father’s Day weekend which will include a sidewalk sale and a chalk art fest. Some streets will be closed for the Father’s Day weekend event as well so people can practice social distancing.
Friday Fest is a well attended, regular event Greeley has during the summer which kicks off additional fun community events and concerts. Greeley has a common consumption area where the events usually take place.
Greeley has now launched virtual Friday Fest to support local creatives that normally would be able to showcase their talent and work at the in-person events. Greeley has continued to see support for the virtual events from regular sponsors, which has then in turn been able to support the local creatives as well as the recording studios that are being used for the virtual Friday Fests.
Paonia is planning a virtual storyfest which will include writers, poets, and local musicians. The event will have virtual workshops, speakers, readings and performances. The storyfest is a two day event on Friday, June 26th and Saturday, June 27th. The keynote address will be given on Friday by award-winning author-adventurer Craig Childs followed by a full day of workshops and performances from talented faculty on Saturday, this celebration of wordcraft will provide inspiration and instruction for writers and lovers of literature alike.
Paonia Blue Sage Center for the Arts StoryFest
DRIVE IN MOVIES
Centennial has planned Wheels & Reels which is a community drive in movie event, which is scheduled for June 18th and June 25th. The drive in movie allows for gathering in a social distancing manner. There will be an empty car space between each car at the event, and it is a ticketed event so there is a regulation in the number of cars. Centennial encourages event attendees to support local restaurants before the drive in movies and to bring the locally purchased food and snacks with them to enjoy.
Centennial Wheels & Reels
Wheat Ridge usually has movies in the park series during the summer so they have adapted it to be a drive in movie series.
QUESTIONS + ANSWERS
Are there any stats regarding the benefits for businesses from the virtual Friday Fest? Have businesses seen an increase in sales revenue?
Greeley doesn’t have stats yet since this past Friday was the first virtual Friday Fest, but there is definitely room to grow the integration with local businesses and encourage Friday Fest attendees to support local businesses as well as special promotions.
Bike riding has increased during COVID-19. Is anyone doing a bike-in event or ride-in bike event?
Lakewood has previously offered quirky bike history tours, and are planning on continuing them this year since they are done in small groups, and turn out well with small groups.
Wheat Ridge usually does bike cruiser rides in small groups, so they are planning on continuing those this year as well.