In the grander scheme of Prince Edward Island corporate patronage, my little Reinvented Inc. is small fry. We, after all, is just me. And so while your Credit Unions and Cavendish Farms and PEI Mutuals can keep entire festivals and arenas alive with their largess, I have to be tactical.
We (me) have been a sponsor of The Island Fringe Festival, on and off, since 2013. My friend Ann was the original route in: she’s been a strong supporter of the festival since day one, and made a compelling case for support; in more recent years Josh Coles has taken up the mantle.
As a member of the audience, I thoroughly enjoyed last year’s Fringe: Oliver and I tried to take in all the shows (Catherine was confined to a hospital bed at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital that week, so it was a dizzying week of alternating fringe theatre and hospital visits).
Fringe 2016 left such an impression on me, that I emailed Josh when it was all over:
As a sponsor and audience member both, I was very pleased with the way things went this year.
As such, I would be well predisposed to a fundraising solicitation for IFF No. 6 while the heady glow of IFF No. 5 is still in the air.
Two weeks later, just as the heady glow was at risk of fading below the horizon, I received an email from festival director Sarah Segal-Lazar:
Josh mentioned that you had expressed interest in sponsoring the 2017 festival while 2016 is still fresh. We’d love to help make that happen!
To which I quickly replied:
I’m happy to double my contribution this year to $500. Let me know where to send the cheque.
I wish all patronage relationships could be so effortless; I’ve often thought that if we removed the “at the Gold sponsorship level you’ll get 2 VIP tickets and a 3x4” logo on the brochure” from the equation we could save everyone a lot of time and effort on both ends (in this regard my friend Tim Banks is perhaps a model to follow; his philanthropy is, in addition to its public face, often of the quiet kind).
Which is all a long lead-up to reminding you that the 2017 edition of The Island Fringe Festival is next week, August 3 to 6, 2017, right here in downtown Charlottetown.
As last year, my contribution to the festival, other than financial support, has been to take the schedule and turn it into data. So in addition to the festival website and the printed schedule, you can get a Google Calendar view of the Fringe Schedule and load it up into your device of choice; or, better yet, load this iCal feed into the calendar app on your mobile and have portable access to the schedule as you ramble around the city next week.
I’ll see you at the Fringe.