Salish Sea Expeditions Crabtucky Derby 2020

October 2020

The GFS Events and Northwest Maritime Center/Salish Sea Expeditions team were only four days away from the annual Seafood Bash before we had to cancel the in-person event. This annual gathering brought together martime lovers from Seattle to Port Townsend to raise money for the next generation of marine stewards and scientists. To keep this event relevant and a breath of fresh sea air from the typical virtual program, we shifted the focus to the most engaging part of the event, the Crabtucky Derby where (plastic) crabs scuttle to the finish line. GFS Events assisted in the auction platform coordination and design, communication outreach and video assistance and oversaw the selling of 100 Crab Cards, created by students involved with the Martime Center. Each Crab Card represented one unique crab that would race in 1 of 5 heats before scuttling to the finish line during our live Crabby Hour. During the three-day Crabtucky Derby, the GFS Events team helped coordinate daily videos from important community members, a strategic donor outreach plan, and an engaging marketing approach. At the end of the virtual voyage, the Northwest Maritime Center and Salish Sea Expeditions exceeded their virtual expectations and were thrilled at the outcome of this engaging event.
Fun Fact
For the in-person event, we always raced real crabs, but for the virtual event, we raced toy crabs and used the Kentucky Derby theme for the race which we dubbed the Crabtucky Derby.
"GFS helped us through a very uncertain 2020, with in-person events called off and organizations needing to pivot to virtual fundraising events. We had to cancel our spring auction just four days before the event because of the pandemic, and GFS took care of the details with vendors, the venue, and ticket refunds/future credit/donation. They helped us pull off a virtual fundraiser this fall, which included elements that we'd never done before (wind-up toy crab-racing, anyone?). GFS helped us every step of the way to ensure we got our message out, our donors engaged, and our event a success. Thank you, Gazala, Alex, and Laura!"
Len Maranan-Goldstein
Director of Philanthropy and Planned Giving, Northwest Maritime Center/Salish Sea Expeditions