Today marks one year since AM Event Coordination officially launched. Everything that has come along with this business has been so unexpected, and I am so grateful. So much has changed since that day I stood in my kitchen and spoke my idea aloud for the first time. My husband's support was the first of so much feedback and encouragement for this idea, and for this business. From that moment forward, it has been a whirlwind. I have not had time to stop and think, because there are too many exciting things around every corner. This whirlwind and this positive energy that my business has created for me has also saved me, because even though this past year building AM Event Coordination has been amazing, it has also been the most difficult of my life. I lost my dad in October, and this business, the support from the people I've met because of this business, the smiles I see on the faces of people I am so lucky to work with, have all helped me to push forward.
And so forward we go! As I look at the calendar on the wall of my glitter-painted office, I am ecstatic to see all of the events we have planned for the summer. We are celebrating love with some weddings and an anniversary, we are celebrating community with fundraisers and Outdoor Movie Nights, we are creating memories with our Photo Booth... This business is not a job for me, it is a joy. I haven't had a lot of moments to look beyond the summer, but as I type this, and remember the words to a lullaby my mom used to sing me, I am making a conscious effort to articulate what I want for the future. There are things I know I want to continue to do, like creating events that bring people happiness. I would love to continue to find ways to give back to the community, by creating experiences for people, and by helping to raise funds for causes I hold close to my heart. I want to continue to collaborate with other businesses and people in and around this community, and as far beyond as I can reach.
So I know what I want to keep doing, but there are also a million things I want to do that I haven't yet. I have a bowl in my office full of little bits of paper, on which are written event ideas I just haven't had time to put together. I have spent weeks trying to come up with a tangible way to celebrate all the amazing people I have met. I have a dream of building a community of women in business in Creston who all support and lean on each other, because seriously, look around this town, there are amazing women all over the place, balancing life and love and work and more work, and I am so proud to call some of them my friends, and I meet new ones almost every day. And maybe it won't be this year, but at some point, I want to buy a little place, or maybe a big place, and create a sort of event hub, where people can come to celebrate and create memories.
I don't know exactly where I am going, or what AM Event Coordination will look like a year from now, but the future feels bright.
Once upon a time, a long time ago, a good friend sent me a photo that made me swoon. The photo was of my husband (fiancé at that time), crouching down and talking to a child in a police costume. My husband is in his own "police costume", and both of them are wearing pink shoes. My friend took this photo during a Walk a Mile in Her Shoes® The International Men’s March to Stop Rape, Sexual Assault & Gender Violence event in Canmore, Alberta, and when she submitted to RCMP headquarters, it was added to their website.
In addition to putting my husband a little higher on my love pedestal, that photo is a huge part of my inspiration in planning a Walk a Mile in Her Shoes® event right here in Creston, BC. This idea was not at the top of my list when I started this business, but was resurrected last summer when I met an individual at an outdoor concert who was actively raising funds for the Walk a Mile in Her Shoes® event being planned in Cranbrook. That event didn't end up taking place, but the wheels were set in motion, connections were formed, and I am super super SUPER excited to be able to formally announce that AM Event Coordination, along with some very generous sponsors, is holding Walk a Mile in Her Shoes® The International Men’s March to Stop Rape, Sexual Assault & Gender Violence on June 22, 2019.
Half of Canadian women have experienced some form of violence, rape or sexual assault. I am a Canadian woman, and I am a part of that half. I have grandmothers, a mother, a sister, a stepdaughter, aunties and friends, and statistically half of them have also experienced the same, or worse than I have. This is happening every single moment of every single day in our society, in our country, and in our communities. I have known men who have actively participated in keeping those statistics where they are, but I have also known men who have actively participated in bringing change to those numbers. It is my hope that the men of Creston will register for this event, and will walk together on June 22 to continue to be a part of that change.
I invite every person who reads this post to challenge the men around you to walk, and I challenge those who can't walk, to pledge someone who is, to come down to Spirit Square on June 22, to line Canyon Street, and to cheer on the men who do. And I challenge the Creston RCMP Detachment to form a team of their own. I've got 52 pairs of high heeled shoes in men's sizes in my basement just waiting to be worn.
To register, follow this link, or head to the Walk a Mile in Her Shoes®: The International Men’s March to Stop Rape, Sexual Assault & Gender Violence page on my website.
Funds raised at this event stay in Creston, and go to the Kootenai Community Centre Society to help women and children in need of a safe place.
If you want further information about the Walk a Mile in Her Shoes® organization, check out: www.walkamileinhershoes.org
My morning ritual includes coffee in bed while I catch up on emails, Facebook and a little Candy Crush. Most mornings are pretty standard, with some variations when I get a particularly exciting email, or when Facebook clues me in on some juicy tidbit. This morning one Facebook post brought tears of gratitude to my eyes, and it was like deja vu, because it was not that long ago that a similar post did the same thing.
This morning I found out I was nominated for the Kootenay Business 2019 Influential Women in Business award for my work on the 2018 Juice FM Holiday Jam, which raised over $20,000 for our local hospital. It was only a few weeks ago that I found out I was also nominated for the Kootenay Business Top 40 under 40 Rising Stars of Business.
When I started this business, I had a few reasons, and one of the ones that keeps me doing what I am doing is that holding events allows me to make people happy. I get to see people at their best, smiling, sharing, laughing, and contributing to that happiness brings me joy and satisfaction. I love being able to play a part in people's happy memories. It is a bonus when those events also help my community. I never expected to be recognized on a broad scale for any of it, but it feels great to know that I have been.
I love creating events. I love being able to give back to this amazing community that has given me so much, and now I am seeing the possibility that the things I am doing are reaching beyond Creston, and that feels pretty great. But there is no way I could have done anything without the acceptance, encouragement and support of the people around me. From the people closest to me, to those I don't know yet. A party isn't successful without guests, and not one of my events is successful without the people attending, the food trucks, the venues. My mentors and my friends who listen to my ideas, the people in the coffee shops or the grocery store providing feedback. I wish I had a bigger way to say thank you. I wish I had a way to acknowledge every single person who has helped me along the way. Because truly, I could not have done it without other people.
As May moves forward, and the one year anniversary of AM Event Coordination gets closer, and as I reflect on the past twelve months, I am just so full of gratitude. I am humbled and honoured to be recognized for what I am doing, for what I have done, and I am overwhelmed by the possibilities of the future. One year ago, I could not have imagined I would be nominated for not one, but two awards. I could not have imagined having a team working with me. I could not have imagined the friends I would make. I am beyond grateful. This business, AM Event Coordination, has done more for me than I can express, and without the network of amazing people out there supporting it and me, I do not know where I would be or what I would be doing. So even though I know I have said it before, I don't think I can ever say it enough. Thank you. I can't wait to see where we go from here.
AM Event Coordination is turning ONE!!!
CAN YOU BELIEVE IT?! Where has the time gone??
On May 31st, 2018, AM Event Coordination debuted at the LEAP! Barnraiser event, and we've been running ever since! It has been an unexpected and intense journey, and I just feel so fortunate to have made it to this point. I would not have been able to do it without the support of my family, my friends, my clients, and this amazing community.
Since that first night, AM Event Coordination has had the great pleasure of watching movies outside with hundreds of new friends. We have celebrated the successes of two local businesses by helping them celebrate their anniversaries, and were inspired by the love and joy they gave back to the community with their anniversary celebrations. We enjoyed birthday parties full of laughter, friends and fun. We learned to make Christmas wreaths with a roomful of creative and talented women. We celebrated Christmas with parties, and raised over $20,000 for our local hospital with a little help from some awesome musicians, generous individuals and businesses, and the big guy in red. AM Event Coordination participated in two wedding fairs, and met hundreds of beautiful brides. We spent Valentine's Day on a loving local street. We bought a photo booth, and took photos of so many gorgeous people. We grew from a one-woman operation to a team of three! We coordinated a major Convention in Castlegar. And we came full circle when I MC'd the 2019 LEAP! Barnraiser last month.
And we are looking forward to even more events and parties and fun over the coming weeks and months. We have some exciting things planned for our anniversary month, including some giveaways and some announcements, and who knows, I may have some other tricks up my sleeve as well!
To start, I want to go back to one of the first things we did here at AM Event Coordination and announce something I am super excited about!!
OUTDOOR MOVIE NIGHTS ARE BACK THIS SUMMER IN CRESTON!!
This year we are holding three family friendly movie nights at the 3-Eh Stage! We're teaming back up with our friends at the Lion's Club for popcorn sales, and Dan Dan the Ice Cream Man will have gotten his ice cream bike out of storage and will be there with some treats as well! We still haven't picked the movies, so feel free to share your top picks, and who knows, maybe your favourite will end up on the inflatable screen!!
Our Ladies Movie Night was so popular, we decided to hold a few of those this summer too, starting with our summer kickoff on the Jimmy's Pub patio on June 21st! Based on our most recent polls, there were two movies at the top of every lady's list: Pretty Woman, and Grease. You can be sure those two will be on the inflatable screen at some point! We've still got room for a third, and possibly more though, all we need is your input!!
Exciting things are happening here, and we cannot wait to take you along with us as we celebrate one year of creating awesome experiences and memories. We couldn't have done it without you, and honestly, we wouldn't have wanted to do it without our friends, old and new, right along with us. Because what is a party without our friends??
Amanda, along with her team, coordinates, facilitates and creates awesome events in and around the Creston Valley. Through her business, AM Event Coordination, she strives to create awesome experiences and memories through the creation and execution of quality events.