How to Plan an Out-of-State National Event for 5,000 Attendees

CUFI

One of our most exciting accounts we work on is Christians United for Israel (CUFI). CUFI is the largest pro-Israel organization in the United States with over 1.6 million members, 1.1 million Facebook fans and conducts over 40 pro-Israel events a month.

CUFI has two main missions. To educate America’s Christians about the biblical and moral imperatives to support Israel. And to activate America’s Christians to speak out on Israel’s behalf to their churches and communities, as well as to their leaders in Congress.

For the past nine years, starting in January, we begin the long preparation for this three-day event that takes place every July in Washington DC.  The thousands of attendees who arrive and participate in this event are probably not even aware of the six months of planning and work that happened prior to their arrival.

Under direction of the CUFI national office and their incredible staff, we join forces to put together this massive event. The list of needs to put on an event of this magnitude is endless. In January, we start with website banners, microsites, postcards, invitations, ads, brochures, registration forms – all the paperwork that is needed and associated with kicking off a large event such as this. Next, we move into actual tangible needs for the events – registration information, folders, media kits, notepads, magazines, programs, pens, tote bags, lanyards, badge-holders, itineraries, maps, vacation information, signage and banners, magnets, informational flyers… the list goes on-and-on.

This July 20-22, 5000 attendees begin to arrive from around the world traveling to Washington to learn about the Biblical, moral and historical reasons for standing with the Jewish people.

The event is held each year at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. This year’s line-up of speakers includes the Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, who will be addressing conference attendees live, via satellite. Members of congress, including Congresswoman Michele Bachman, Senator John Cornyn, Senator Tim Scott, Senator Lindsey Graham and many others who will brief audiences on legislation affecting Israel and the Middle East. In addition to elected officials, a host of Middle East experts and Biblical scholars will also address Summit attendees such as Charles Krauthammer, Malcom Hoenlein, Bill Kristol, Dennis Prager and Pastor John Hagee.

In 2011, CUFI introduced The Battle For The Future:  Israel on Campus exhibit, which is basically a traveling museum; for the past three years, the exhibit has grown to include over 200 elements including interactive signs, booth graphics and tents. This year, we expanded the exhibit with a few new signage elements and we updated information and design on about 20 existing pieces! The amount of work, organization and care that goes into this part of CUFI’s Annual Summit, is just mind-boggling!

New this year, we also handled a national media blitz with billboards, direct mail, radio, national digital and social media as well as a nation-wide public relations campaign.

Summit attendees can also visit the CUFI Store, which offers merchandise made in Israel, art from Israel as well as t-shirts, books and CDs. We play a large role in the CUFI store. We produce many of their the specialty products such as t-shirts, mouse pads, buttons, Bible covers, pins, license plate frames, picture frames, tablet and phone covers, bumper stickers – an array of products that support and make others aware of CUFI’s mission post Summit.

If you haven’t ever had a chance to attend this event, it is definitely worth it! The excitement, enthusiasm and support this event produces for the nation of Israel is truly awe-inspiring! For more information, go to cufi.org (which by the way, was also produced by yours truly, Rudkin Productions).

Please click to enlarge.

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