For years I’ve dreamed of hosting our very own Jilly event with my incredible community, and on September 15th + 16th, 2022, that dream came to life with Academy at the Farm! I still have goosebumps looking back at how over 100 women were able to enjoy our little slice of heaven, Eleven Acres, and how I got to meet (and enjoy a glass of wine with!) SO many inspiring people.
To bring such a big vision to life and literally build a brand new venue space on our Farm, I knew we needed to be surrounded by the best of the best, and that meant working with some of my favourite vendors and partners to create something extra special for you all. Working alongside the brilliant ladies of The Atelier Collective, Ang Osborne and Taryn Herritt, as well as Alison from The Jilly Academy and the ever-wonderful support of Team Jilly.
So join me as I take you on the journey of just how we were able to curate such a memorable event and the partners who made it happen!
One of the VERY first things we knew we had to incorporate into the event: wine, wine and more WINE!
One of my favourite ways to bring an unforgettable experience to any event is to have a signature taste through the food and drink selection, and working with Sandhill was the BEST way to bring the flavour of the Okanagan Valley directly to our guests.
All of our guests were first introduced to Sandhill at our beautiful kick-off event at the El Dorado Resort, where we had the chance to enjoy the Sauvignon Blanc, Rosé or Merlot. All three? Yes, please! Friday at the Farm, Sandhill’s visionary new winemaker, Stephanie Van Dyk, led us through a Happy Hour tasting of their crowd-pleasing Rosé. The natural fruit essence added the right burst of flavour to those invigorating conversations with the guests, and let’s be honest – a good time was had by all! And to top it off, our VIP dinner included a progressive wine tasting experience to complement our gourmet meal, provided by White Table Catering (check them out below!).
We are ALL about presentation, excellence and photo-worthy moments, and no one does it better than the team at White Table Catering! Husband and wife duo, Mark and Carly, are absolute pros at curating an exciting and memorable tasting experience for all of their events! They set the bar high right from the get-go, with an energizing breakfast buffet filled with handmade pastries, cold-pressed juices and local fresh fruits. Their creativity reached new heights with a gourmet lunch with individual picnic boxes, which every person stopped to get a photo of! We were left with happy bellies and ready to get our goal-getting mindset activated for a BIG afternoon!
Then, to close off this extraordinary day, there was the lakeside VIP dinner, which I am STILL dreaming about! By using local ingredients and mouth-watering flavour combinations, White Table WOW’ed our guests! Meticulous with every detail, including the individual menu cards, this dining experience was one that I will forever cherish.
Our Curated Pop-Up Market
Who else had to check their bag for their flight home after shopping at the Pop-Up Market?! We were SO thrilled to work with some of my favourite brands and Jilly Academy alumni to deliver our attendees a curated selection of goods for your home and life!
If you caught our last blog about our gift bags, you’d know our guests got a sneak peek of our latest collection with Smash + Tess (which has officially launched, btw)! We welcomed the unstoppable Ashley Freeborn, CEO and Co-Founder, to the stage while her team set up shop in our Vendor area.
A second to have a moment to yourself to have a deep breath? YES PLEASE! We kept our social stamina up with a breathing moment brought to us by Saje Wellness! Team Jilly loves their Roll-ons for that on-the-go pick-me-up to keep your mind sharp and focused or cool, calm and collected. If you’re getting ready to network or doing a mindful wellness event, consider these little moments for your guests to recharge!
Whether you are doing a team-building event, a bachelorette party or anything in between, we all need to stay HYDRATED! The best way to do this? Set up a withinUs hydration station, of course! We gave our guests that extra energy boost in their water with the individual on-the-go packs of Rehydrate + TruMarine Collagen, the game-changer to keep the energy up! And for the perfect afternoon refreshment, the most DELISH Matcha ever!
Taking her small business on the road from Okotoks, Alberta, to Kelowna, Regan and her small business, An Honest Room, showcased all the things we need to elevate our Fall decorating game! Their quality, carefully selected home goods offer the key pieces you need to make any room have the most beautiful pieces in your home!
Okay, so who else purchased their new Fall mug from Bri, the founder of Love Co. Ceramics?! All of her pottery is inspired by nature and childhood memories, like wandering through the forest, feeling the sunshine on your skin, picking strawberries, and so much more. Bri’s hope with each creation is that the joy and love that she puts into it radiates toward those who purchase from her. LOVE HER.
Bring me alllll the Fall candles! We were thrilled to be able to have Citrus + Sage Co., a Canadian, female and Indigenous-owned company that specializes in bringing luxury items to everyone’s homes. Nikki, the incredible founder, strives on hand-crafting sustainable quality products and excels in small-batch all-natural coconut soy candles with wooden wicks, vegan bar soap with all-natural scents and colourants, and fragrant bath bombs & bath powder.
Extra Special Experiences
Getting our guests to and from the Farm in a safe way was our priority, and the fantastic team at Kelowna Concierge made this process seamless, and really, really fun (Did anyone else see the footage of Abbi’s party bus?!). The luxury fleet provided for this event checked all our transportation requirements, and we LOVED working with them!
When we were curating the details of this retreat, we knew that kicking off the event in a way that would prime everyone’s minds for a day of learning, connection, and growth was important. Working with the team at Mindful Collective to realize this vision was a collaborative effort anchored on their shared values of respect, integrity, inclusivity, quality and creativity. Their vision is to inspire everyone to live their best and most balanced lives, and this was the perfect tone set for the retreat. Thank you to Victoria Maybee, yoga instructor extraordinaire, who led a beautiful heart-opening class, and to Mindful Collective for gifting all of our attendees with B Mat Traveller YOga mats and a silk eye pillow, used for the most relaxing savasana ever.
Following yoga, we were all graced with the brilliant mind of Jamie Wood, CEO and Founder of Autonomic Technologies. Jamie is a cognitive performance specialist who works specifically with high-performers to create stability and predictability of cognitive output in high-demand, rapid-change environments. Team Jilly and myself have had the opportunity to work with Jamie before, and we are always left mesmerized by her words! She brought her A-Game to her workshop on goal-setting and the brain, and left us all with important takeaways and keystone habits to implement into our day-to-day and reflect back on.
This is such a fun activation to have at any kind of party! We had Bubbles and Brews join us all the way from Alberta (psst… she’s a Jilly Academy Alumni member too)! Cindy has the most beautiful beverage truck where we served a local favourite, Mother Love Kombucha!
Thank you for tuning into our Academy at the Farm recap series! Don’t forget to follow all of the brands and @thejillyacademy to stay up to date with new launches, updates and continuing to support the incredible small, local, women-owned, BIPOC-owned, or Jilly Academy Alumni-owned businesses! We have more exciting things on the way, so don’t forget to sign up for The Jilly Academy newsletter!