Day 11 – Tunes for Toonies – 13 Days of #HoHoTO

For the past three years Ryan Taylor  (you might remember him as a giant elf) and Duarte Da Silva have provided the kickass music selection that keeps  HoHoTO going long into the night.

Sadly, this year our favourite elf is too busy at the North Pole polishing his jewels to join us. Instead, special DJ guests will join Duarte on stage during the night – let’s call them Santa’s Little Helpers.

Also new this year, we WILL entertain your musical requests — but as you might expect with everything HoHoTO-related, we want your song selections to contribute to the cause. We’ll have a collection box at the front of the stage, along with a Sharpie and a stack of Post-Its.

Got a tune you really want to hear? Pop a toonie in the box and scribble out your choice (clearly!) on a Post-It. Had it to the DJ or one of the on-stage helpers, and…

We will make our best effort to play your request during the night BUT… we should warn you: we’re music snobs.

The DJs’ decision, as ultimate arbiters of taste, is absolutely final. If we determine your taste in music is lacking or generally dodgy, we reserve the right to publicly ridicule your choice and may or may not refund the $2 (we won’t) depending on how many cocktails you’ve bought us.

If, however, we approve of your song selection, we will give you a high five, regale you with public accolades, and may or may not refund the $2 (we won’t).

Remember, with every song request donation you make, you are helping feed a family and making the world suck a little less.

Your toonies for tunes lead to fewer empty spoons.

Molson Coors cares about community

It is literally true that there could be no HoHoTO without our sponsors. We can never really thank them enough for all the support, energy, creativity and cold, hard cash they bring to the cause.

One sponsor that has been with us right from the very start is Molson Coors, and we’re singling them out here for special thanks.

Every year, the HoHoTO elves awaken from their dayjobs in mid-November and set to work shaking the tree; striving to gently encourage corporations big and small to come on board as sponsors. I’ve watched the sponsor elves do their thing – they sometimes have to shake those trees seriously hard.

But the Molson Coors guys have never needed too much coaxing to get behind HoHoTO. Led by the ever-smiling Ferg Devins, they jumped in with both feet in 2008 and have supported us every year since. It’s clear the people in Molson’s PR organization really understand their relationship with the Toronto community and the role they can play.

Molson Coors’ $10,000 Santa-level sponsorship this year will feed a lot of hungry Torontonians. Knowing the importance of cash donations at this time of year, they cut us a cheque as soon as they came on board. We’ve already flowed that money straight through to the Daily Bread Food Bank so they can put it to work immediately.

Here’s the thing: Daily Bread can purchase way more food with the cash we hand over than you could ever get in a grocery store for the same dollar amount. They buy in bulk, directly from the food industry. Plus, with direct cash donations the food can get to those who need it faster because it doesn’t have to be sorted, and Daily Bread can focus on purchasing the food they are in short supply of – essential staples like baby formula and pasta.

The Molson team gets this, but for them it’s not just about the cash. Take a few minutes wandering through the Molson in the Community blog and you’ll soon see they’re genuinely giving where they’re living. The team there supports a host of important causes and they roll up their sleeves and dive in to help. We think that’s pretty frigging awesome for a beer company.

They’ll tell you they’re proud to play their part. Well we’re proud to have them back on board this year as a leading supporter of HoHoTo.

Ferg, Tonia, Adam and the whole Molson Coors team – we’ve got one word for you: cheers!

How To HoHoTO

So you’ve got your HoHoTO ticket in hand and you’re getting ready to deck those halls tonight. Woohoo! Whether this is your first HoHoTO or you’re a seasoned reveler, we thought these ten quick tips and reminders might come in handy:

1. GET YOUR VENUE ON: HoHoTO is once more at The Mod Club – they’ve been really good to us every year and we couldn’t do it without the generosity of Jorge and his crew who donate the space and their time to help make this event happen. Be nice to the staff and remember to tip – they’re working for free.

Mod Club
722 College St.
Toronto, Ontario M6G 1C4
Doors: 7:00 pm

2. GET YOUR ECO TIX ON: Bring your ticket with you to speed the lines at the door. If you can, save a tree and bring the email copy of your ticket on your smartphone. If you forget both, don’t worry – we’ve made a list (and checked it twice);

3. GET YOUR NOSH ON: Please try to bring a bag of non-perishable groceries for Daily Bread Food Bank. There’s a list of the most needed items here and you’ll find a Metro supermarket right across the road from the Mod Club

4. GET YOUR GLAD RAGS ON: About that dress code. There isn’t one. Come as you are or dress to impress. Whatever you’d wear if you weren’t so square, or perhaps just the same old jeans and top you still feel most comfortable in. Oh – but definitely wear your dancing shoes.

5. GET YOUR RAFFLE ON: One of the key components of our fund-raising efforts is the HoHoTO raffle (and the Hangover Auction next week – more on that in a later message). The raffle is simple but still seems to confuse some people every year. Here’s how it works:

– Buy tickets from the volunteers floating around all night (they’ll find you);
– Check out the AWESOME raffle prizes upstairs – each prize pack has a box in front of it with a slot for tickets to go in;
– Put as many tix as you want into the box or boxes of your choice;
– ?????
– Profit!!! (maybe)

We start drawing for prizes at 8:30 and will announce 3 prizewinners every 15 minutes. Keep your eye on the Tweetstream or check our wall chart to see if you’ve won your heart’s desire.

6. GET YOUR SONG ON: HoHoTO co-creators and fabulous DJs Duarte DaSilva (@modernmod) & Ryan Taylor (@ryantaylor) will be monitoring TweetDeck on stage for song requests from the crowd. Please get your requests in by tweeting artist + track followed by the hashtag #hohotodj (e.g. Rick Astley Never Gonna Give You Up #hohotodj)

7. GET YOUR TWEET ON: If you’re on Foursquare, check in to HoHoTO (and go for that Swarm badge). Tweeting from the party? Use the #hohoto hashtag (and maybe get to see your tweet show up in near real-time on the big screen). Tag photos and videos with HoHoTO and post them to the Flickr and YouTube groups.

8. GET YOUR SWAG ON: Be one of the first 100 people in line when the doors open at 7pm to get a special HoHoTO swag bag from our generous sponsors and friends of HoHoTO.

9.GET YOUR SNAPS ON: Don’t forget to get your glamourous HoHoTO Holiday picture taken in the HoHoTO Photo Booth upstairs. Our pro-ho-ho photographers are ready and willing to make you look fabulous for a modest donation to Daily Bread.

10. GET YOUR BRAIN ON: Please. Do NOT drink and drive. We love you just the way you are – not the wrapped-round a tree or rotting in jail version. Leave the car at home. Be smart. Share a cab. Save a life.

And finally – huge and heartfelt thanks from your entire HoHoTO organizing committee – who are:

Leila Boujnane: CEO,  Idée Inc.

Alexa Clark: Managing Partner, Plethora Press

Ryan Coleman: Applied Innovation Specialist, BMO Financial Group

Duarte Da Silva: Senior Manager,

April Dunford: VP Marketing, Solarsoft Business Systems

Peter Flaschner: Creative and Community Director, Sequentia Environics

Rob Hyndman: Founder, Hyndman | Law

Sheri Moore: Partner, Creative Director, MCC – Moore Carlyle Consulting

Alistair Morton: Creative Director, Partner, Peapod Studios

Michael O’Connor Clarke:  Vice President, Digital, Media Profile

Michael Penney: El Presidente, Afterlight Films

Michele Perras: Manager,  Mobile Experience Innovation Centre

Corey Reid: Chief Cat Herder, FreshBooks

Ryan Taylor: Goldsmith, Adventurer, The Fair Trade Jewellery Co.

Rannie Turingan: Photographer,

Elena Yunusov: Founder,

HoHoTO Raffle Goodies

One of the ways we help Daily Bread at HoHoTO is to raise more money with raffle ticket sales. Every year, our generous in-kind sponsors step up with fantastic prizes and this year they have out done themselves.

We have three prizes being given away every 15 minutes, and four at the top of every hour.  That’s 42 prize draws happening between 8:30-11:30 tonight.

So many fantastic prizes came flooding in we had to bundle some of them together. Most of the raffle prizes are now valued between $150-300 (with some much, much higher).  Even after bundling, we still ran out of space in our schedule to draw them all tonight. So some have been reserved some for Monday’s HoHoTO Hangover Auction.

We’ve got amazing prizes in every window! So don’t miss out on the early draws (there’s always less competition for those).

Here’s a partial list of the prizes. We have something  for almost everyone’s tastes:  from fencing to food, baskets to books, tech toys to more tech toys:

  • Eco Prize Basket from Bullfrog Power (value $250)
  • 14 course dinner for 4 catered by Little Kitchen ($600)
  • 3 Kobos each with 2 free books ($175, with one for Hangover Auction)
  • 2 Geek Wardrobes with surprize bonuses: 1 Men’s large, 1 women’s large ($200 each)
  • 2 $100 gift certificates for C5 bundled with fantastic cookbooks ($150+)
  • 10 Hours of Foil Fencing Training plus Original Fencing Artwork ($300)
  • Sony eReaders from Eden Spodek ($200)
  • Premium award-winning Olive Oil collection ($150)
  • $250 Gift Certificate for FabFind ($250)
  • Science Nerd Gift Basket from 1DegreeBio ($100)
  • Photo Still Life from Pat Anderson ($240)
  • 10 hours of collaboration space rental from Cloud Ad Agents (and a 2.5 hour block for the Hangover Auction)
  • Cell phone and 3-month plan from Mobilicity, bundled with some hipster books from Raincoast ($200)
  • Dinner for 2 from Ronica Cooks + a $50 Type Books gift certificate ($150)
  • Dion Phaneuf’s Maple Leaf jersey and 2 tickets to the Leafs vs Hurricanes on Dec 28th ($300)
  • Designer’s Night In Gift Basket from Peapod Studios ($200)

…and from 9:15 to 9:45 we’re running a special Rogers Raffle Window with tech toys amundo including the killer Samsung Galaxy TAB valued at $625

So don’t forget to buy your Raffle Tickets – you’ve got to be in it to win it.

Besides, $25 worth of tickets will buy an emergency food hamper for a family of four.  Hit a bank machine before you come out tonight and wear your lucky underpants. Even if you don’t get lucky, you might get lucky…

Rogers $25 raffle ticket deal

[This is a guest post from Miranda MacDonald, part of the Social Media Team at Rogers]

Spend $25 on tickets, get warm device-happy fingers for you and help feed a family of four!

Hello, HoHoTOers!

I’ve got good news for your cold-but-device-happy fingers AND your conscience: Rogers has partnered up with HoHoTO so that the first 95 people to spend $25 or more on raffle tickets at the event will get a complimentary pair of device-friendly iGloves while supplies last!

You’re also helping out a family of four at the same time, since $25 will provide them with an emergency food hamper.

Here’s how iGlove redemption will work:

  • Each of those first 95 people to spend $25 or more on raffle tickets will get a special token from the raffle ticket seller
  • Bring that token to any member of the Rogers social media team to redeem your pair of complimentary iGloves (we’ll be in red shirts so you’ll know who we are)

Looking forward to seeing you all at HoHoTO tonight!