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Insider Events – Tourism Saskatoon’s Hybrid Hub AGM Event


By: Melanie Hudson | May 27, 2021

Date: April 7, 2021
Host Venues: Saskatoon Inn & Conference Centre, and Encore’s Hybrid Studio
Target Audience: Members of Tourism Saskatoon

People Involved:

Event Room

  • 1 event manager – Nancy Bradshaw, CMP, Tourism Saskatoon
  • 1 Zoom voice – Candace Schierling, Tourism Saskatoon
  • 2 presenters – CEO & Board Chair
  • 4 AV technicians
  • 3 film crew members

    Offices/homes – via Zoom

  • 2 presenters
  • 60 participants

    On-site hotel – via Zoom

  • 20 participants from their hotel guestroom
  • 24 participants having dinner at private tables just outside their guestrooms on the balcony overlooking interior garden

Theme and Objectives

Theme: Apart but Together

Celebrate: The purpose of the Annual General Meeting section of this event was to celebrate the success of the past year and to inspire and prepare our members for the year to come.

Educate: Our next objective was to showcase how we can host safe hybrid hub events with creativity and attention to detail.

Inspire: By creating a menu of ways to attend the event, we wanted to inspire our members, staff, and clients to envisage a future where multiple experiences are possible.

As one of our goals was to educate, we had a film crew capture the behind-the-scenes view of what it took to execute this event from the organizer and the participant views.

To view the video, click here.

tourism saskatoon hybrid agm

Three Ways to Attend

This was our first hybrid hub event with participants experiencing and consuming the content within their own comfort levels. Participants were able to attend in three different ways: live in studio; digitally from the privacy of their hotel room with the Workcation or Staycation packages; or from their homes and offices.

Using the Zoom webinar platform, all presentations were live with presenters speaking from the Encore studio stage or from their home/offices, as per their preference. Questions from participants came through the platform Q&A box with the option to be invited on stage to ask the question personally or have Schierling read the question to the panel. Responses were in real time.

Following the two-hour AGM, we switched to an hour of Zoom discussions and most participants attended the full three hours.

Creating an event where participants can choose their level of live interaction and ensuring an enriching experience for everyone added an extra layer of planning, but it was well worth the time and effort. The key to success was communicating often with the registered and potential participants to ensure their commitment to the social distancing protocols, including staggered hotel check in times.

Saskatoon Experience Bag

At check-in, Workcation and Staycation participants received a Saskatoon Experience Bag which included: their lunch, a fresh wellness juice, Saskmade snacks, fresh baked treats, and a cocktail kit from our one of our local distilleries. They also received an electronic note featuring website links to the suppliers of the bag contents. To enhance their experience, participants were invited to create a signature Saskatoon Spritzer by following a pre-recorded video from the Lucky Bastard Distillery.

tourism saskatoon agm

Socially distanced Dinner

The final component of the event was a socially distanced dinner and musical performance. The Saskatoon Inn has guestrooms with balconies that face an interior courtyard. We set up dining tables just outside each room, so that guests were able to experience being together, yet remain safely apart. During dessert, guests enjoyed music from a local performer who played from the courtyard a floor below their balcony seats. We even managed to fit in a marriage proposal near the end of the event!

The mixing of digital and live content was challenging but very successful, delivering that feeling of authentic live events, along with the safety of social distancing.

Safety First

The biggest challenge was ensuring that our detailed COVID risk management plan was being adhered to at all times. We had to be flexible and willing to change plans right up to the last minute, as COVID protocols and rules are always changing.

Our event scenarios included checking the provincial regulations daily and involved regular check-ins with Tourism Saskatoon management for go/no go approvals.

A two-week post event check of participants confirmed that there were no virus transmissions during our event.

Tourism Saskatoon AGM Hybrid Event 
Tourism Saskatoon AGM Experience Dinner - Together but safely apart Tourism Saskatoon AGM Experience Dinner - Private Tables Outside Guest's Room

nancy bradshaw Article submitted by Nancy Bradshaw, Tourism Saskatoon

Article compiled by Melanie Hudson, retired MPI Ottawa memberArticle edited by Cynthia Beaudin, Canada Foundation for Innovation



Hudson headshot
Melanie Hudson

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