Here’s a great story about social media being used for a great cause. It involves a flood, several cows and a few creative personalities. As many people will recall, downtown Calgary was like a ghost town in late June due to the deluge that seemed to appear overnight. It was downright eerie to walk around the core and the C- train line (if you managed to bypass the barricades) and not see anyone else in sight. The Fairmont Palliser (133 9th Ave SW) was one of many buildings that had their power cut and the hotel ended up having to shut down their operations for over a week. Apparently that was the first time the hotel had shut their doors in nearly a century.
While the closure of downtown was terrible for everyone, the Fairmont made the best of a bad situation. A handful of local personalities, known around Calgary for the social media presence and good deeds, were enlisted by the Fairmont to help spread the word of the hotel’s re-opening and to remind the world about our town’s legendary Western hospitality. Each personality, or ‘Cow Wrangler’ as they were referred to, was given a decorative Palliser Fairmont Cow as a travel companion and mascot for the campaign. Pretty soon the hashtag #FairmontCows was all over Facebook and Twitter with pictures of the Fairmont Cows hanging in Bali, hitting fashion week in New York, and even stopping off at Mt. Kilimanjaro.
So, who were some of the Cow Wranglers?
Ryan Massel (@immrfabulous): Better known as Mr. Fabulous, Ryan works as a local blogger who has landed himself a pretty sweet gig covering the coolest parties around the world. Ryan’s Fairmont Cow took in the culture of Singapore, Hong Kong, Bali, Amsterdam, Barcelona, Las Vegas and NYC. That lucky cow was even seen cavorting with Miss America.
Dan Clapson (@Dansgoodside): Dan is synonymous with YYC’s food scene, writing for Avenue, Swerve and EatNorth.ca. While Dan’s Fairmont Cow didn’t get to hit international hotspots, his cow probably ate better than John Gilchrist.
Vincent Law (@Binzento): Vincent is a local fashion blogger and TV personality. Vincent and his Fairmont Cow hit all the hottest fashion shows and parties together. The cow is now an authority on floral prints and must-have shades this winter.
On November 19th, the Fairmont Palliser held a silent auction to find the Fairmont Cows new homes. Everyone who attended the event had the chance to meet the Cow Wranglers, hear their experiences, and view the great photo gallery of the Fairmont Cows’ adventures in the city and abroad. The silent auction raised over $1600 and the proceeds from the auction went to the Southern Alberta Ronald McDonald House, an amazing charity that helps keep families close to their sick children in the hospital by providing a home away from home. We tip our hats to the Fairmont Palliser for their ingenuity.
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