Harley-Davidson Benefit Creates Studio Back Lot With Screen Test, Kissing Scene Stations
For the all-female Precious Metal Gala, held in support of Rethink Breast Cancer at the Fermenting Cellar on Tuesday, Deeley Harley-Davidson Canada switched venues, choosing a raw space for this year's benefit, and integrated more branding opportunities into the event, which was designed to feel like the back lot of a movie studio.
"Last year when we did it at the Artifacts Room [at the Liberty Grand Entertainment Complex], I took a beautiful, clean environment and turned it into a garage. This year I took an environment that is more raw and did my best to pretty it up," said event planner Olivia Gottlieb, outreach specialist with Deeley Harley-Davidson Canada.
As was the case last year, the event—intended to empower women by creating a comfortable atmosphere for them to become accustomed to the brand—featured a number of interactive stations where guests could participate in activities like learning how to pick up a motorcycle and posing for pictures at a photo booth staffed by Distinctive Foto Imaging.
"I wanted to convert this place into a back lot so it's 'The Making of Biker Chic by Harley-Davidson,'" Gottlieb said. "You're not just a guest, you're an actor." The theme translated throughout the space with signage designed to look like film action boards and food stations set up like craft tables.
Gottlieb also wanted to create a larger focus on the Harley-Davidson brand. "There's some integration at all of the stations now," she said. For example, attendees could sample lip glosses from Balmshell and then sit on a Harley and run lines with a male model.
The various stations also loosely followed the process involved when obtaining a motorcycle license. "You come in and go to the info booth and learn about Harley Davidson. Then you do your written test, that's the graffiti wall. Then you gear up at the hair, makeup, and wardrobe station. For the screen test you're on a bike riding, and then you get to do a stunt, which is the pick-up shot, and then you go to your cover shoot and have a photo taken for Dolce magazine."
The event also attracted new sponsors like Wild Berry Vodka Coolers. "We have a lot more support than we did at the last event for sure," Gottlieb said. "People really want to attract women and promote their brand to women, and they think this is the right event to do it at because of the whole focus on empowerment." Other sponsors included Balmshell, Your Shop Girl, Alizé, Seagrams, Pepsi, and Rockstar.
Virgin Radio personality Billie Holiday hosted, and Karen Davidson, great-granddaughter of Harley-Davidson co-founder William A. Davidson, made a guest appearance. Entertainment included a performance by So You Think You Can Dance Canada’s Miles Faber. Toronto salsa legend Albert J. Gomez produced and choreographed a performance for the event.
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