Why Should You Care About Event Bidding?
by Sachin Kotecha, Events Director
Quidditch Canada will be revealing finalist locations for next season’s Major Events this Friday, May 12. This is Quidditch Canada’s second season running bidding: a forward-looking selection process that runs over the course of around five months. But what exactly does this process entail, and why should you care about it?
What are the benefits?
There are a lot of perks that come with this process. Bidding by nature is competitive, which generally means that Quidditch Canada can do more with the end product event. Members get more from the events and quidditch generally gets more exposure from working with new partner cities.
Bidding also gives member teams the opportunity to get involved with the process. Any team can work to create a bid for their city to be a host, and Quidditch Canada can usually help teams connect with important city partners. This year, teams will have additional opportunities to get involved with consultation sessions, but more on that later.
Quidditch Canada has also been able to move up the announcement date of championship locations with the bidding process. This year, locations will be announced in July – a far cry from announcements happening during the season as they did just two years ago. A long-term goal is to move to a multi-year process where teams will know locations up to two seasons in advance.
Lastly, in the sports tourism industry, bidding is the standard. As Quidditch Canada focuses on its mission to “lead, promote, and advance the sport of quidditch in Canada”, falling in line with expected standards is important.
How does the process work?
This year, Quidditch Canada was open for bid submission for three months. During this time, we reached out to over 30 major cities across the country with the connections we’ve established over the last two years. We work with them to create interest in our events and help them with the details needed to submit their bid. We also work with teams that have expressed interest in bidding by connecting them to relevant parties.
This year, Conventions Coordinator Alex Downey-Ging and Team Canada Representative Erin McCrady attended the Sports Events Congress hosted by the Canadian Sports Tourism Alliance in Ottawa. At this event we connected with numerous cities to promote our events and learn more about sports tourism in Canada.
At the time of publication of this blog, Quidditch Canada has received all bids for events for next season and is currently giving them a very preliminary evaluation to decide which ones will move on to the finalist stage for site visits and further exploration. These will be announced this Friday!
Over the next 2 months Quidditch Canada will evaluate the finalist bids on an internal rubric, visit the host city facilities and hotels, and then re-evaluate the bids on the same internal rubric. The rubric takes into account factors that include but are not limited to: the quality of facility and hotels, the accessibility of and cost of travel to the host city for member teams, and the promotion the host city will provide for the sport of quidditch.
After visits and evaluation, the selection committee will come to a preliminary ranking on winning locations. During this time, consultation sessions will take place with member teams. Following these sessions, the committee will come to a final decision and announce the winners on July 15.
How can I be more involved or have my opinion heard?
Teams are always encouraged to put forward bids for our events! Last year’s National Championship decision came down to two bids put forth by teams – Winnipeg and Victoria.
Another excellent place to have your opinions heard is through an initiative started by Quidditch Canada this year – Teams’ Council! Be sure to let your team representative know your thoughts and they can bring it up during Council meetings.
The Events department is currently hiring three Events Managers who will be involved not only in the creation of our Major Events, but also the selection of host cities. You can find more details about the position on our Volunteer With Us page.
Lastly, we’re starting a new initiative this year to increase transparency and get teams more involved in the process. Once site visits are complete, Quidditch Canada’s Events department will hold a series of consultation sessions with eligible member teams. These meetings will consist of one East team and one West team at a time, hosted by the Events department. During these sessions, details about bids received and their resultant evaluation will be discussed, and the team representatives will have the opportunity to give input and feedback on the decisions that Quidditch Canada is making. (Eligible teams are those that got involved in this year’s bid process either by submitting bids or submitting possible locations as requested through Teams’ Council. Invitations to sessions will go out sometime near the end of June.)