Each year in August, I attend the Incentiveworks conference and trade show in the Metro Toronto Convention Centre where I get to meet up with old friends in the meetings and events industry, make some new biz connections and check out new opportunities to explore.  This year, I took Jennifer Murray, an Events/Mkt’g/PR student going into her last year at Humber College’s program and she had a blast! Sometimes it’s good to see things you take for granted through a newbie’s eyes. Big thanks and congrats to organizer Robin Paisley and her team for another great year at Incentiveworks.


One of the first booths was Berber Lounge (pictured above) where they set up the giant (and very comfortable) booth similar to their venue located at Front St East, Toronto. Lots of yummy taste treats but where were the belly dancers? I needed to wiggle off a few pounds..LOL

Jennifer and I loved meeting the men of Cheesewerks – Toronto’s premiere big cheeses!  We spent a long time tasting their apple & cheese samples – .in fact, we were little piggies. Yum yum yum

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Ravine Vineyard Estate Winery of Niagara made a beautiful statement with their rustic booth (below) …loved the decor.

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Then we moved down the aisles and had a little chocolate-money fun at the Caesars Windsor booth. They know how to spoil trade show visitors!

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Jenn and I had our pictures taken with a big furry friend at the Arctic Kingdom Marine Expeditions booth. Grrrrrr. The polar bear (made of borg, not real fur) was so cute and cuddly, Jennifer near fell on top of him as he tumbled over after she hugged him a bit too much!! Think it was all the sparkly stuff we had at Caesars…LOL

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We were thrilled to meet up with the reps from the host hotels for the upcoming Canadian Comedy Awards in Ottawa. Patrick from Les Suites and Melanie from the Courtyard Marriott posed with Jennifer (below)


I always love visiting the various Maritimes booths (the reps are always so damned friendly) and this year, I took Jennifer to Pr. Edward Island where she showed her prowess with a putter! She shoots…she scored! Me, too…and we ended up with a handfull of black and blue ball markers. Sounds rude but if you’re a golfer, you’ll know what they are…and I have a bunch of ’em, if anyone wants them!

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After all the drinkies, it was time for a visit to the loo and one of the service companies, Star Meetings, had decorated the ladies room….I couldn’t resist snapping these loo pics!

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Back on the trail looking for cool booths, we then found Universal Links who had a “special guest” in their booth….LOL! Stick your head thru Rob Ford’s tummy and snap a pic. I just couldn’t stoop that low – literally – my back was hurting!

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Loved these cute rubber duckies we found at the Calgary booth…one now sits proudly on the side of my own tub.


We met these super friendly ladies who told us all about the Metropolitan Hotel – we noticed they had colour-coordinated their wardrobes to match the booth. Apparently, they said, it was a happy accident. Love the fresh flowers.


Jennifer entered a cool contest to win a flight, courtesy of Porter Airlines. Good luck, Jenn, you gotta take me with you if you win.


And then I introduced Jennifer to the rep for CanSPEP, an organization for professional meetings and events people. They offer valuable information and networking opps for new graduates such as Jenn as well as industry pro’s such as myself.


Another sponsor for the Canadian Comedy Awards was also there, VIA RAIL, so we got to try out their comfy seats. Hope our trip up to Ottawa is just as nice as this.


Sole Power Productions welcomed all the visitors to Incentiveworks with their groovy music and delightful skating dancers. They played all afternoon and kept everyone energized and happy. The best entertainment on the trade show floor!

20140820_124053So if you’re in the Meetings & Events industry or planning to enter this business, I strongly recommend you sign up for the educational workshops & seminars or the FREE trade show next year. Watch for dates and news here: http://

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