Events are bringing people together—as well as dividing them—more than we’ve seen in some time. Many of the defining events of the past 12 months were political—the U.S. presidential 2016 election followed by the presidential inauguration and the historic Women’s March on Washington that took place the next day. Long-standing events such as the Kennedy Center Honors and White House Correspondents Association Dinner have had to reckon with the new political climate by canceling or changing their status quo. In Canada, many events used the country’s 150th anniversary as their event theme and reveled in patriotism and national symbols.
Within this context, we sought to determine the Top 100 Events in the United States and in Canada. Our picks recognize the annual events that are shaping our culture, making the biggest impact within their fields, and pushing the meeting and event industry itself forward.
The 2017 edition of the lists include blockbusters like Comic-Con International, the TED Conference, and New York Fashion Week, but also new events such as the ATX Television Festival, Art Toronto, and Chicago Gourmet.
By recognizing successful events, we hope to shine a light on industry leaders as well as start a discussion. We invite you to share your top events with us on Twitter @BizBash.
As with all lists, these are subjective. To choose and rank the annual events, we look at several factors, including economic impact, buzz, innovation, and an event’s prominence within the communities it intends to serve. We also vetted selections with industry insiders.