Travel Alberta

Tips to Get You to the Top for Small Town Saturday Night 2013

Entries are now open for Small Town Saturday Night 2013 - this is a great opportunity for you to showcase your community! 

Travel Alberta and the Big Valley Jamboree have once again partnered to host the 2013 Small Town Saturday Night contest. The grand prize includes a concert in the winning hometown headlined by Canadian country music artist Chad Brownlee. 

Last year, the winning town of Legal successfully put themselves on the map with an inspired 2-minute video and went on to host an epic concert that raised close to $100,000 towards their charity. 


Here’s a few tips to get your Small Town Saturday Night 2013 entry off to a promising start:


1. Before you do anything else, download the official entry form and the read through the full contest rules and regulations at

2. Say it simply: 2 minutes isn’t a lot of time, so be sure to make the most of it by keeping the story you’re trying to tell simple. Want people to know that your town’s most awesome attraction is its summer festival? Then tell us just that – in as many and as creative ways as your time and imagination will allow.

3. Enthusiasm is infectious: Watching people having a good time makes the corners of everyone’s mouth turn up. So rally the troops – and catch them having fun.

4. A solid soundtrack: As the town of Legal demonstrated last year, basing a video around a popular song is a winning formula. Just make sure that any final music you use in your video is your own, or at least your own version.

5. The cute factor: Babies, kids, dogs, cats and other adorable creatures often find themselves as the stars of popular YouTube videos because we just can’t get enough of their cuteness. Consider incorporating some into your video.

6. Make ‘em laugh: Your video doesn’t need to be Who’s On First? but a bit of shtick helps to make a video memorable. The promise of laughs also increases the likelihood that it will get shared.

7. Popularity power: Get a well-known local celebrity to be a part of your video: this could be your Mayor, MLA, hockey team captain or anyone who brings some notoriety to your video. If this person has a large social network their popularity can also help you drum up support for your video in the voting round.

8. The un-official guide: Instead of echoing the local tourism brochure, take us on a behind-the-scenes tour of your town. Think about the places you would take a good friend who’d never been there before. How would you show them a good time? What are the places you would want them to see and the experiences you would want them to try?

9. I second that emotion: Think about a moment of joy you’ve had in your town that was just so awesome it you goose bumps. Is it whizzing down the toboggan hill? Two-stepping up a storm at the local watering hole? A particular dish at your favourite restaurant? Try to capture the emotion behind those moments that make you feel happy to be alive and exactly where you are in that moment.

10. Let there be light: A video that is so dark that you can’t tell what’s happening in it probably won’t make its way into the Top Ten. Remember when you’re filming indoors to use extra lights to make sure there aren’t any harsh shadows on people’s faces.


Remember, the deadline to enter is 2:00 PM on February 28, 2013. Good luck!

Travel Alberta