Escape Artist Rob Roy Collins Among Fan Favourites and First Timers at Sun Life Financial Waterloo Busker Carnival

Escape Artist Rob Roy Collins Among Fan Favourites and First Timers at Sun Life Financial Waterloo Busker Carnival

Co-written by Lindsay Burdett The Sunlife Financial Waterloo Busker Carnival kicks off its 26th year on Thursday, August 21st. This year brings familiar faces, along with many new, captivating performers from around the globe. Canada’s Premier Carnival brings the Waterloo Region community together to enjoy a weekend of outrageously talented, wild performances. This year three fan favourites will return to wow the crowd, including Chalkmaster Dave from Toronto who often paints the streets with his exquisite 3D murals and unique art form. Another fan favourite returning from 2009, is The Red Trouser Show from Boston. With all new tricks up their sleeves the Red Trouser Show delivers an exciting combination of comedy and daring acrobatics, including fire juggling and ladder stunts. The last returning performer is Rob Roy Collins, who comes all the way from England to kick start the opening ceremonies with his courageous escapology and comedic moments that always leave the crowd wanting more. Collins will attempt “The Great Escape” upside down from an industrial crane high above the Main Pitch of the carnival. “I have done this sort of thing from a few crazy places including high atop a billboard in Toronto, off a roller coaster track in the UK, and from a helicopter in Niagara Falls, but never so close to an audience in a public square,” Collins said. “They will be able to hear everything up and close and personal. It’s going to be brilliant!” After celebrating the carnival’s 25th anniversary last year the team wanted to bring a fresh, exciting spin to the Buskers this summer by introducing nine new, internationally renowned performers to Waterloo busker fans… the first timers! Dream State Circus, all the way from Australia, bring with them a dazzling show of hand balancing, juggling, and equilibrium, all involving fire. Another first timer includes Mario, Queen of the Circus from New York City. Mario is considered a top five busker in the world, producing a unique blend of circus artistry and comedy, he captivates the crowd with impeccable juggling tricks, humor, and crowd surfing, all while enjoying his favorite rock group, Queen. Pyromancer, from the Netherlands, offers an astounding show for the whole family of bold fire breathing tricks. Jam packed with danger and a light-hearted touch of comedy, his fire show is world class and will leave you on the edge of your seat. Lisa Lottie, also from the Netherlands, delivers a beautiful and vivid performance of balance, hula hooping and contortions, as she attempts one of the most complicated stunts ever! Jonathan Burns, a contortionist from Philadelphia, will keep you laughing and in shock with his flexibility in bending in positions unimaginable. Don’t miss Funny bones, all the way from Tokyo,...

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Facebookers of the World, Beware.

Facebookers of the World, Beware.

Think you’ve got your social media privacy settings under control? Think again. Once upon a time there was a woman, we’ll call her Sue. Sue was dating John, and one day noticed that he had liked a photo on Facebook of another woman. John, a police officer, went on Facebook that same day and posted a photo of his under age daughter taking shots out at the bar: “Atta girl!”, he commented. John and Sue are no longer in a relationship, and John is now jobless. The end. In today’s online, social world, privacy is hard to come by. We have grown to a new level of comfort when it comes to what we share and with whom we share it. Our meals, work life, extra curricular activities and family time have become a normal part of everyday “socializing.” This week I have been doing a lot of research for work on privacy and account settings, and felt it was necessary to share some of what I learned and already knew: Did you know that Facebook has recently tweaked its privacy settings? In this privacy and user habits infographic, 25% of Facebook users say their posts are public. Despite the warnings with social media as the always watching eye, 25% of users don’t know if Facebook tracks their location, while 61% don’t realize that third party applications may have access to their data and information. How many of you read the Terms and Service on social networking sites before accepting? Many users aren’t aware that their videos, photos, contact information and cell phone providers are just the beginning when it comes to information your networking sites can get about you. Now let’s revisit the story of  John and Sue. The key takeaway here is that with social media, your information, posts, engagement and activity are never a secret, or totally safe. I’ll take Facebook an an example: for photos, it tracks what you like, what you’re tagged in, and who you’re with. For posting, it’s very similar. Now let’s say you’re travelling and post a photo of your hotel… yep, it tracks that location too. The bottom line is this: always be aware that what you post, “like” or click on is being tracked. Facebook truly is the Big Brother of social networking… it is always...

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PR In Canada’s Top 30 Under 30

PR In Canada’s Top 30 Under 30

This month has been one for the books… Last Tuesday I was thrilled to share that I am working on my first ever piece of published academic work, and have been contacted by the Conestoga College Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC) program to collaborate on new materials for an upcoming workshop! Last week I also found out that I have won a spot in PR In Canada’s Top 30 Under 30!  The winning acknowledgement read: “The idea for the #princanadatop30under30 was born from a desire to promote excellence within the Canadian public relations sector, and to recognize those who are pushing themselves and can be called “leaders” in the space.” Words cannot describe how excited I am to be honoured with this distinction! I am grateful and overwhelmed by the supportive emails and phone calls I have received this month. Thank you to the amazing people in my life who have supported me over the years as mentors, friends and colleagues. Steve – you have been there since day one, taking me under your wing and helping me grow. Thank you for pushing me toward The Force; to my OpenText team, past and present – my professional experiences have been very positive and I feel very fortunate to have the job and team that I work with. My ‘second family’ at Gemini – the opportunities I have had with meeting new people, experiencing new things, and sharing my passion for life with students has been extremely rewarding… I couldn’t have asked for a better group of people to grow and share in new chapters with! The Sun Life Financial Waterloo Busker Carnival – this unbelievably dedicated group of individuals have taught me a lot about what it means to truly be involved in my community, and to love what I do. Beccomm followers, clients, and friends – thanks for supporting me and being a part of my personal and professional journey. My family & best friends have always encouraged me to challenge myself and push the limits… I feel so fortunate to have encouraging, challenging, ambitious people around me. Last but never the least, Mike – ‘it’s a dog-eat-dog world out there… eat or be eaten.’ Thank you for the challenging me the most and encouraging my goals everyday. There is no best friend out there like you. I’m really looking forward to meeting my fellow Top 30 Under 30′s tomorrow in Toronto… collaborating with a group of young, energetic, driven professionals… my ideal night. The best is yet to come…...

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Paying It Forward

Paying It Forward

After reading these 3 short stories I hope you can find the time to Pay It Forward. Over 5 years ago I met Stephen Young, who at the time was the National Marketing Manager at MTD Canada and the Director of Marketing for the Waterloo Busker Carnival. It was at one of my very first modelling gigs. We clicked instantly – with his high energy and lovable personality, how could we not be friends? After getting to know each other better and explaining that I was getting more involved in the world of public relations, Steve offered me an opportunity to volunteer with the carnival… and I took it. Time flies - August 2014 will be my 5th summer volunteering as the Director of PR & Social Media, on the executive committee for the Sun Life Financial Waterloo Busker Carnival. Over 6 years ago I got together with Ema Suvajac, grabbed some Christmas lights, had one of my best friends do the makeup, and attempted our first photo shoot – for both of us. Little did I know, I was about to meet my second family in Audrey Wilson, Laurie Cadman, and the Gemini Models team – some of the most beautiful people inside out. I’ve been fortunate over the years to have had the opportunity to model for Ed Hardy, MTD Canada, World Gym, Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, and countless local projects in the Waterloo Region. Over 3 years ago I had the opportunity to work with Meghan Huras, Communications Specialist at OpenText. I learned and discovered a new side to communications – public relations and social media, different than the marketing/PR role I had taken on a few years earlier with Steve. I worked hard to learn, grow and develop my skills managing OpenText online communities and working with an amazing group of people. Meghan helped me make an informative decision about where to further my education for a grad degree, and I now currently work full-time at OpenText as a Public Relations Specialist. This post is not meant to give the impression that everyone can – or will help you, but rather to remind you that regardless of your profession, you have an opportunity everyday to help someone else, in some way… to give them the start and the opportunity they need. It’s up to them to put in the work. I have never believed that good things come to those who wait. I believe that good things come to those to take action.  When opportunity knocks, answer right away. I don’t believe that action means doing something alone… one part of achieving yours goals and your own definition of success is to connect with others...

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Beccomm: What’s in a Name?

Beccomm: What’s in a Name?

What’s in a name anyways? In June 2012 I announced that I was starting my own business, Beccomm. What started years ago as my high school blog, then titled “Rebecca Anne”, quickly grew into my freelance communication business. I knew I wanted to write, meet new people and take on new opportunities and projects that challenged me to grow professionally. As I sat down at my desk in the spring of 2012, I had everything ready to go… but couldn’t decide on the perfect name for my biz. Then it hit me. I wanted something easy to remember but meaningful, because I always try to place purpose and meaning behind everything that I say and do. I’ve had many people ask me how “Beccomm” came to be, so here we go. Visually, Beccomm breaks apart into “Bec-comm”…and it is just that: the communication business of Rebecca Grieb. The meaning and purpose of my business name however, can be found in its proper pronunciation: “Be-Calm”. I wanted to create a business in which I could use my skills and services to strengthen the brand of the person, place or group I was working with. I wanted Beccomm to act as a fresh perspective and engaging voice on behalf of whatever company I was working with. I wanted to create a sense of “calm” – a reassuring voice that I would help each client know I was there to help them accomplish their goals. Moving forward into 2014, I am beyond excited to get started on new projects and opportunities. Whether it is copywriting for a website, implementing a social media strategy, writing a press release or blog, or assisting with the success of a business launch… I am ready! In the New Year also plan to make my blog posts more consistent and regular. As of Thursday, January 2, 2014 I will be posting my blogs every second Thursday. I encourage you to subscribe to my posts, and connect with myself and Beccomm on Twitter or LinkedIn. I wish you nothing but the best in 2014, and am looking forward to the adventures and opportunities that lie ahead in the New...

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Oh, the Opportunities!

Oh, the Opportunities!

There is something to be said for being alone and feeling completely content. Close your eyes, picture your favourite moment… who is there? What are you doing? Now ask yourself this: who and what is it that truly makes you happy? I’m currently listening to Lana Del Rey’s “Young and Beautiful”, blogging, journaling, reminiscing on the past and genuinely looking forward to the future. It’s been two hours of the same song, me writing madly, so madly my hand hurts. I’m sitting in front of a palm tree at 2am in Orlando planning more social media activities for OpenText, feeling truly appreciative for the opportunities I’ve had lately. Hot summer nights, mid July When you and I were forever wild The crazy days, city lights The way you’d play with me like a child Over the past few months I’ve been developing and implementing a social strategy for Body Mechanics in London, Ontario, as part of the freelance work I do. From this project I have learned so much about myself professionally – and personally. I’ve learned that developing a communication strategy can’t happen overnight and it requires true dedication to your craft. I’ve also realized that for me, loving the work I am doing is just as important as who I am doing the work for! Fall 2013 was a huge realization point for me professionally. I have always worked in a position where writing and social media has applied, however it has only been in the last few months that I have started to recognize the fire that lights within me when I am doing this type of work. I love connecting with real people, engaging in out-of-the-box, meaningful and sometimes crazy converations. Some people have refreshing perspectives on things, and I find social media to be a great outlet for starting those conversations. What I learned from 2013 is that in every situation we truly do have the option to look at the glass half full or half empty. Moving forward into 2014 I am making it my mission to see the opportunity in everything I do. We only have one life to live… we can either look at how many things we have to do in a day, or we can look at how many opportunities we have to take on new projects, try new things, and meet new people! Finally, I would like to offer some food for thought: Are you truly living in the now? In 2014, I want to embrace opportunities as they come and truly look for the best in everyone, in everything, and everywhere. May sounds cheesy to some, but to me they are opportunities waiting to be found. So...

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