REGINA — The Regina Hotel Association (RHA) crowned “ReginAcadabra” as the Event of Events competition champion and recipient of a $20,000 sponsorship to help start up the new event, it was announced in mid-June.
The competition was launched in January to search for a new investment opportunity for the RHA, which sponsors over 60 events, festivals and conferences every year.
“We were thrilled with the quality and creativity of the event ideas that were submitted into the competition,” said RHA CEO Tracy Fahlman in a release. “With 42 entries, it was a tough choice in selecting only 11 official contestants.”
Contestants had to meet the initial requirements specified on the contest website and have the potential to draw visitors to Regina and generate demand for hotel rooms. Over the past three months, the 11 official contestants pitched their event idea to a panel of judges and were “checked-in” or “checked-out” of the competition through a series of elimination rounds.
The three finalists were: The Great Saskatchewan Mustard Festival, Hill Case Competition and ReginAcadabra. The competition then tested the public appeal of each finalist and measured their marketing savvy.
“It was important to the judges to understand what the community would be willing to support,” said Awelana Akeriwe, competition judge and founder of Regina Afrofest, in a release. “Our twitter poll allowed us to gauge each contestant’s passion, drive and ability to promote their event.”
ReginAcadabra won by scoring the highest in a ranking system. This new magic festival combines public magic shows, ticketed performances and a magic-industry convention over a proposed two- to three-day period. “We liked the combination of the public events for all ages with an industry-focused conference,” said Fahlman. “It polled well in the community and received great support from Canada's magic industry.”
The RHA may produce the competition again in the future, but for now, is redirecting its focus on supporting ReginAcadabra and the other contestants’ efforts to turn their dream event idea into a reality.