Boyle Street Community Services is taking the month of October as a Month of Thanks. We’ll be highlighting partners whose advocacy and support have been instrumental to our success this year.
If you’re looking for inspiration on how to adapt and thrive in these challenging times, look no further than Trixstar Productions LTD. Not only has Trixstar achieved amazing success with their Together Again concert series, but they’ve been an invaluable friend and support to Boyle Street Community Services in these trying times.
While the COVID-19 pandemic has been hard on everyone, the challenges of our time have also become opportunities for innovation and growth. Trixstar Productions have proven this and continue to prove it as they grow and support their community. They did this by bringing live entertainment back to Edmontonians through their Together Again concert series and hiring Boyle Street’s social enterprise HireGood for their clean up duties.
Trixstar's Mike Anderson and Boyle Street's Kassidy Green at the Together Again Concert Gates
The concept of Together Again is simple – provide a physically distanced venue for music and entertainment that allows attendees to feel confidently safe. Even though they’d found success before the pandemic, expanding out of their Edmonton-only office and establishing themselves in Calgary and Nashville in 2019, the first week of ticket sales became the most successful week of business the company had done to date.
Two months into planning their first concert experience, Mike Anderson, Founder and President of Trixstar, was told by the City of Edmonton that a shelter for vulnerable persons was moving in next to their venue location, the Edmonton Exhibition Lands. After doing his own research into what that meant and who supported vulnerable people, Mike reached out to Boyle Street.
He said “most people in my shoes would have just hung up, would have just left that venue and found a new venue. we decided, you know, let's double down and let's engage and be part of the solution.”
Not only did Trixstar continue with the concert, but they also contributed $1 off each ticket to donate to Boyle Street Community Services. And they didn’t stop there. On a recommendation from the Alberta Avenue Business Association, they paused their contract with another service provider in order to bring on HireGood for their site cleanup. HireGood is a social enterprise and part of Boyle Street Ventures, and they provide meaningful employment to community members who experience barriers to employment. This move allowed 12 community members to work a total of 140 hours, supporting vulnerable members of the Edmonton community.
“People complain about they can’t find good workers or there’s a lull in the market – I'm like ‘reach out to HireGood.’ Some of the best staff I’ve ever seen and such a great attitude of coming to work, which is priceless I think,” Mike said.
Jodi Phelan, General Manager with HireGood, had similarly high praises for Trixstar.
“Our experience from the start was amazing. Trixstar supplied everything we need to co-ordinate the clean-up and basically handed us the reins on it.” Reflecting on the experience, Jodi said “everything went beautifully and our interaction and communication during all the shows was outstanding.”
Through ticket donations, Boyle Street received $22,462 from Trixstar over the course of the concert series, and Anderson has said he wants to continue in partnership for some time to come. A donation of that size is integral to allowing us to be innovative, flexible, responsive to urgent needs.
“We were happy to make the financial donation,” Mike said. “But I think the thing that made us feel great about our relationship [with Boyle Street] was we were actually helping make impact in people's lives. We're just so happy that we could create the job opportunities that we did with our event series. That, to me, was the most rewarding part is knowing that we were able to help out – it meant more to me to be able to create opportunities than it was to make the donation itself.”
Even as the pandemic continues, Trixstar is innovating how events happen in this city, and helping to make this city a better place. Both Jodi and Mike see a bright future ahead for the partnership between Boyle Street and Trixstar. Mike is already thinking about what they can do and specific programs they can help out with, especially with supporting HireGood.
“We're only a couple of months in, and I feel that we've got some good traction. I'm really excited to see what we can do together in the next two to three years.”
For more information on Trixstar, what they’re doing and where they’re going, visit https://trixstar.com/ and sign up for their newsletter.