Good food, good laughs, and a good time was had by all who attended the City of Moose Jaw’s first ever Beer, Brands & BBQ at Mosaic Place on Thursday night.

Mayor Clive Tolley, city staff and members of the business community were in attendance to come together to share stories and collaborate on how to grow the brand of not only the city but businesses within the city.

Gair Maxwell was the event's guest speaker. Maxwell is an international branding expert and the best-selling author of ‘Big Little Legends’. He also helped brand Moose Jaw as Canada’s Most Notorious City back in 2019.

Following a scrumptious dinner, Maxwell kicked the evening off by sharing his story of how he helped Moose Jaw become Canada’s Most Notorious City, as well as giving local businesses in attendance insight and advice on how to brand their company successfully. One of the big things Maxwell emphasized to the crowd was how important it was for the social media audience to brand your company for you through various platforms.

Those in attendance had the opportunity to hear the stories of three local businesses and their branding and marketing stories, with Maxwell and Mayor Tolley interviewing each.

The first business that sat in the hot seat was Moose Jaw Brewing Company co-owner, Terry Zwarich. Zwarich shared his story about how their business got off the ground, which began making beer on the weekends with his friends, and then eventually had the idea to create what is now the Moose Jaw Brewing Company.

A burning question for Zwarich was the story behind his curly mustache, which he says he has been growing for the past 12 years.

IMG_0079_1.JPG Moose Jaw Brewing Company co-owner, Terry Zwarich sharing his story with Mayor Clive Tolley (left), and Grair Maxwell (right). 

The next business was one that actually had to re-brand and now is known as Lions Creek Olive Estate, owned by Charmanine Franken. She explained where the name Lions Creek came from. She says that the name ties in with her story and South African roots, where her premium olives for her Extra Virgin Olive oil are from. Franken shared her passion for her olive oil and balsamic vinegar company and highlighted the struggles and successes she has had along the way.

IMG_0093_0.JPGLions Creek Olive Estate, owned by Charmanine Franken fielding questions from Maxwell and Tolley. 

Geoff Anderson, CEO of Moose Jaw Co-op and Chair of the Downtown Moose Jaw Association was the last one in the hot seat. Anderson began his Co-op career in the small town of Carrot River, SK, in the butcher shop and explained how he made it from there to where he is today, with some help and motivation from a co-worker.

He expressed a great deal of passion for the culture of Co-op and even some new branding initiatives they have taken to create a better customer and employee experience.

IMG_0121_0.JPG Geoff Anderson, CEO of Moose Jaw Co-op sharing his story with the audience. 

The evening finished off with a Q&A session with Maxwell and Tolley where the audience was able to ask questions on how to better improve the branding of their businesses and or the city's new ‘Get A Life’ marketing campaign.