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Promote Your Organization by Celebrating St. Louis’ 250th Birthday

The first PRSA St. Louis luncheon this spring was an intimate gathering, some 30 public relations and marketing professionals munching on carrot soufflé while learning the details surrounding St. Louis’ 250th birthday. Erin Budde, Executive Director of stl250, the organization spearheading the public-private partnership supporting the birthday effort, spoke with passion about the good work being done to represent “the Lou” for its historic significance and its innovation. She encouraged the PRSA membership to get involved.

 Here are four ways St. Louis professionals can get involved:

  1. Volunteer with the United Way: United Way of Greater St. Louis and Americorps St. Louis are organizing 250K volunteers and matching them with official “Celebration Partners.” Hundreds of stl250 volunteer opportunities are available. The project listing and volunteer registration is available at the United Way’s Volunteer Center at Approximately one million hours of service will be invested in St. Louis and the surrounding communities. All volunteers recording 25+ hours will receive a commemorative certificate of service.
  2. Utilize the curriculum and encourage local schools to participateCurriculum and lesson plans about St. Louis’ history are available for educators via download. In the fall of 2014, a student community-research project and contest will launch to encourage students to learn about local communities and submit a project. The top 250 submissions will be revealed in December 2014.
  3. Write a storyPR professionals are nothing if not storytellers. Put those storytelling skills in place and share your story about St. Louis. The stories, observations and hopes of our region will be collected through a social media app. Input will be mapped across indicators of community attachment created by the Knight Foundation and presented in a dashboard format highlighting our efforts to increase our civic pride. Input will be stored in a database for use in planning future services for our regions. For more information, contact stl250.
  4. Find the cakes and use the appStanding at four feet each, two-tier ornamental birthday cakes will mark 250 locations of importance in our region—200 chosen by stl250 and 50 selected through a public vote, completed January 3, 2014. Locations were unveiled at the February 14, 2014, press event. The stl250 app, “Cakeway to the West,” was developed by Arch Grants recipient Candy Lab. The app will share facts about each location and allow “check ins” for a sweepstakes featuring great St. Louis prizes.

stl250 has a limited staff and is relying on citizens’ support to promote the mission and spread the good word. Budde sat at my table prior to giving her presentation and encouraged fellow PRSA member Chris Kuban to follow his ideas for marketing the events. “We’re a staff of one,” Budde said. “If you have an idea, go for it.”

To learn more about the opportunities listed above and the many events surrounding the stl250 milestone, check out this blog post recently written by my colleague Daniel Doelling, and remember to share those selfies you’re taking in front of the 250 fiberglass cakes scattered across St. Louis this year! 

This post is courtesy of Stephanie Lynch, a PRSA St. Louis member and PRSSA student mentor. She is the PR and Social Media Manager at H&L Partners, the advertising agency of record for the Missouri Division of Tourism. You can find her on Twitter @theslynch.

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  1. Tressa L. Robbins

    Mar. 24, 2014

    Thanks for recapping the event, Stephanie, for those of us who couldn't be there. Sounds like some great opportunities!