Seneca News

March 28, 2018

A fundraising event with 15 venues means 15 chefs, 15 florists, 15 furniture orders, 15 special-occasion permits for liquor – and that’s just a portion of what needs to get done to pull off such a large-scale event.

And it’s those details that Event Management – Event and Exhibit Design (EVT) students learn about working on a high-profile event like Bloor Street Entertains, which has raised over $10-million for AIDS research over the past decade. 

John MacBride and winners

The event is a collaborative effort between Seneca’s EVT class and faculty, the Canadian Foundation for AIDS Research (CANFAR) and Event Strategy Partners (ESP) Inc. Last week, they were recognized for their work with an award for Best Event for a High Profile Charity at the Canadian Event Industry Awards, one of the highest honours for industry professionals across the country. 

The award was a welcome sign of recognition for these 14 students, but being involved in Bloor Street Entertains was the true prize. 

Bloor Street Entertains has been part of the EVT curriculum since the program was first established in 2006. “For us, it’s a learning laboratory, and CANFAR understands that,” says John MacBride, EVT Professor and Program Co-ordinator. “They’re really good about ensuring that the students get what they need out of this.”

A truly hands-on experience, the 2018 event saw Seneca students design the dinner décor at the Four Seasons Hotel, Liss Gallery, Lumas Gallery, Harry Rosen, Rimowa and Strellson. The annual fundraiser transforms luxury retailers into elegant dining rooms. The evening includes a four-course meal featuring table settings created by the students, as well as a silent auction and after-party.  

Bloor Street Entertains is hosted the last Wednesday of November, prior to World Aids Day on December 1. 

“Seneca and CANFAR have a unique relationship that has lasted for more than a decade and continues to grow,” says John. “We are delighted to have our longtime collaboration recognized in such a prestigious way, and we look forward to working together for years to come.”

Photos of Seneca students’ work from Bloor Street Entertains 2017