PARRY SOUND – One new website and a marquee sign are fresh upgrades on the horizon for the Charles W. Stockey Centre and Bobby Orr Hall of Fame (BOHF).
On January 31 the performing arts centre launched its new website designed by Linkhouse Media for $14,700.
Now the same company has been hired by the Town of Parry Sound to redesign the Bobby Orr Hall of Fame’s website for $9,800.
“The re-design will allow staff to make the majority of the updates in-house and will accommodate the enhancement of the e-store function associated with the BOHF gift shop,” wrote Lynn Middaugh, town director of economic development and leisure services, in her report to council. “In 2008, $52,159 was transferred from the Stockey Centre/BOHF operating budget – surplus – to a Bobby Orr Hall of Fame reserve to fund continuous improvement initiatives such as the re-design of the BOHF website.”
Staff requested council allow a transfer of $10,000 from the reserve account. The additional $200 would cover any added features that would benefit the site, Middaugh said.
Coun. Bonnie Keith said she was thrilled with the letters of recommendation Linkhouse Media had received from previous contracts.
“I think those are really positive things and they’re important in a corporation that we would want to use again, so I support this,” Keith said at last Tuesday night’s council meeting.
Greg Hancock, Stockey Centre marketing and special events co-ordinator, said he’s thrilled, both personally and professionally, with the new website.
“The new site is more reflective of the Stockey Centre itself, visually and structurally: it is the online experience of the Stockey Centre, soaring and open and purpose-designed,” said Hancock last week. “Clean and simple to navigate, the site is very intuitive in how it works, very satisfying visually and functionally. In short, it looks smashing and works beautifully. We started by designing this from the viewpoint of our guest, meeting their needs by thinking, if I were coming in, what would I want to know, what would I like to see, and how can I get there from here? Then we went to work with Jason Rosewell’s agency, Linkhouse Media, to make it happen.
“We quietly went live late (last) Sunday night, called a soft launch, and then went to work making sure that everything worked as it was supposed to in the real world.”
“We’re still tweaking things a bit, putting the finishing touches on it all, but by and large it is up and running, and running very smoothly,” said Hancock. “I think it is a thing of beauty and a joy to behold, but I may be biased.”
The new $72,000 marquee sign, although still in the design stages, will have three rectangular panels – the top frame with the hall of fame logo, the centre LED frame announcing upcoming events and shows, and the third frame with the Stockey Centre logo.
“The need for a marquee sign at the Stockey Centre has been discussed for quite some time,” said Middaugh in her report to council. “Currently there is no way of advertising activities to the passerby. Posters/information are hung on a string in the windows, which give the centre a cluttered/disorganized and unsightly look. Further, many cars drive up to the front of the centre, but can’t really see the posters from the parking lot. A larger marquee sign would confirm the centre as a destination and be highly visible. Should council approve the sign, windows will no longer be used to promote activities, cleaning up the appearance of the centre considerably.”
Bobby Orr granted approval for funds from the Samsung reserve fund to pay for the sign.
The proposed location of the sign is near the entrance of the performing arts centre.
Coun. Keith was concerned the fir trees near the proposed site would grow taller, blocking the view of the sign.
“Prior to the installation taking place we will consult with the director of operations and the company themselves,” Middaugh said. “They have a lot of experience in terms of positioning and maximizing the viewpoint of the sign and we have talked about this.”
“The sign will have the Bobby Orr Hall of Fame logo and then it will have a panel and it will be LED, so it will be controlled through technology, so the intent of the sign is it’s certainly inclusive that it will promote all of the events at the Stockey Centre whether they be hall of fame related or Stockey Centre related. Because it will be moving sign, in terms of the content and information, and something that is easily changed by staff, if there’s an event of significance in our community – absolutely we will be able to market and promote that as well. This is an optimum place for selling advertising space. Not in terms of another logo or billboard or banner, just in terms of the message that is on the sign.”