Vancouver’s New Year’s Eve organizers have won an accolade for their breakthrough success in providing the city with the first New Year’s Eve public celebration in over a decade.
Last week, the not-for-profit Vancouver New Year’s Eve Celebration Society and event producers BRANDLIVE were presented with the award for the “Most Outstanding Event Over $200,000” at the Canadian Special Events Awards Gala held in Toronto.
“Vancity Buzz, about a couple years ago, came to us and said we wanted to do a New Year’s Event – there’s no New Year’s Event,” said Gregory Hegger, who accepted the award on behalf of the Society and BRANDLIVE, in his acceptance speech. “So we went to the City, Port Metro Vancouver, Downtown Vancouver Business Improvement Association… we formed a New Year’s Eve association and out of this came an event two years later. So thank you to everyone here, it was a great first year event and we’re looking forward to future years.”
The event, held on the evening of December 31, 2015 until just after midnight, attracted an estimated 80,000 people to the waterfront area in downtown Vancouver, making it Canada’s largest New Year’s Eve event in terms of attendance.
Over a six-hour time span, revellers enjoyed live music, street animation, and two high-aerial fireworks displays launched from a barge in Coal Harbour. There was an Early Eve fireworks show at 9 p.m. for families with younger children and a spectacular 11-minute-long midnight finale fireworks display to properly ring in 2016.
“We are delighted to receive this award,” said Dani Pretto, president of Vancouver’s New Year’s Eve Celebration Society, in a statement. “It’s a testament to what can be achieved when Vancouver’s private and public sectors come together to support a shared vision for a free, all-ages community event.”
“This event would never have happened without the support of our founding partners at Vancity Buzz, the Downtown Vancouver Business Improvement Association, Port Metro Vancouver, the Vancouver Convention Centre, Starbucks, Tourism Vancouver, Boughton Law, BDO, Vanterre Projects and PCI Group and support from our partners and volunteers.”
An enormous amount of support was also provided by Concord Pacific, the presenting sponsor, and other local businesses including CF Pacific Centre, Herschel, Westpark, Block 81 Holdings, Tom Lee Music, and Terminal City Club.
Additional backing came from the City of Vancouver to help build a strong foundation for the region’s newest annual tradition.
Planning is already well underway for this year’s event on December 31, 2016 to celebrate the arrival of 2017.
“It was our pleasure to collaborate with such a dynamic and visionary board on this event and we are excited to build on the success of 2016 together,” said Catherine Runnals, President of BRANDLIVE.