In 2003, Community Journalist Wendi Winters had the brilliant idea to connect local non-profit organizations and small business communities with the press. She envisioned an event similar to “Meet the Press,” wherein operators and entrepreneurs could interact with print, digital, and web-based media outlets to network and pitch stories. Wendi successfully organized and hosted sixteen instances of her “PR Bazaar.”
Tragically, Wendi was one of the five Annapolis Capital Gazette staffers who lost their lives in the June 2018 attack on their newsroom on Bestgate Road. Next month, the Chesapeake Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) plans to continue Wendi’s legacy by sponsoring a resurgence of the PR Bazaar in her honor.
The “PRSA PR Bazaar” will be held on Thursday, May 11, at 5:30 pm in the Bowen Theater at Maryland Hall, 801 Chase Street, Annapolis, MD. A portion of the proceeds from the event will be donated to the Wendi Winters Memorial Foundation for use by community writers at DC Theatre Arts, per the request of Wendi’s children.
The event is open to the public. Admission is $20 for advance tickets, PRSA members, and Annapolis and Anne Arundel Chamber of Commerce members. Admission is $25 at the door. Space is limited. To purchase your ticket, visit the PRSA Chesapeake Chapter website.
The evening will provide a basic introduction to local media. Attendees will develop an understanding of different forms of media and how media can directly impact mission success. They will learn how seasoned public relations professionals work with the media and the skills necessary to get stories into the press. Attendees and media alike will have the opportunity to interact in a small group setting through “speed networking.”
“The goal of the evening is to help local nonprofits and business owners connect with people who are in the business of getting the news out,” Chapter President Molly Winans said. “Find out what members of the press want or don’t want. Determine the best way to contact them and how to make a lasting connection, and learn best practices for getting your story out.”
Panelists represent all types of media and PR Firms, including television, radio, online, newspaper, magazine, and social media. Confirmed panelists to the PR Bazaar include Brooks DuBose, Annapolis Capital; Samara Martin, WUSA-TV; Jamie Costello, WMAR-TV; John Frenaye, Eye on Annapolis; Rick Hutzell, Baltimore Banner; Ryan Sneddon, Naptown Scoop; James Houck, What’s Up? Media; Kathy Knots, Bay Weekly and Chesapeake Bay Magazine; Donna Jefferson, Chesapeake Family Life; and Paris Brown, Annapolis Times/Baltimore Times
Doors open at 5 pm. for registration and networking. Panel discussion begins at 5:30 pm, followed by roundtable discussions. There will also be break-out sessions. Those participating will receive a media directory of attending media panelists with tips on getting their story or message out.