two. We should parade them through town and give them the keys to this city, for they are just two regular people who have reminded us that in Baltimore this is what two people can do. This is citizenship at its finest. Two people believed in an idea that could better their city. They badgered everyone they could to make it happen. They are Baltimore’s best.”
They mapped out their vision in 2013, pitching it to potential stakeholders. A year later, the couple connected with entrepreneurs, business owners and local organizations … Flash forward to 2016, and more than 500 people from the Baltimore area are working to make Light City come to life.
“The enthusiasm of Brooke Hall, founder of “Light City,” is infectious. She said the festival was engineered to bring people and the artistic community together and celebrate camaraderie and joie de vivre. What took three years to put together will finally come to fruition in a week.”
When Brooke Hall and Justin Allen came up with the idea for Light City, they were looking for a way to showcase Baltimore’s creative talent and innovative spirit. But after the year the city’s had, the local business and tourism community is hoping the event will also change the conversation about Baltimore.
“Light City Baltimore: In just over two weeks, something potentially amazing will be happening at Baltimore’s Inner Harbor. It involves light shows, art and music, but Light City Baltimore is also meant to showcase Baltimore’s development as a hub for technological innovation and entrepreneurship with a social conscience. Today, we meet the couple who conceived of the idea — Brooke Hall and Justin Allen, founders of the Baltimore-based creative agency What Works Studio and the online magazine, What Weekly.”
So how is it possible to put on a $4 million, seven-night light installation festival in the heart of Baltimore with such a short timeline? Someone started thinking about lighting up Baltimore years ago.
The journey to build Light City Baltimore began in 2010 with years of research into transformative events and their ability to create impact for communities. In 2013, Brooke and I developed the Light City festival model and launched a multi-year, integrated marketing campaign that consisted of digital marketing, public relations, fundraising and grassroots advocacy.
“Hall and Allen can never be accused of thinking small. Whether it’s starting their own creative agency and the online magazine What Weekly, or envisioning Light City Baltimore, a new arts and innovation festival that debuts March 28, they traffic in big ideas. “I think that was part of the reason why we were attracted to each other,” says Hall. “We’re both just like, ‘How far can we push the envelope? What’s the biggest, most exciting thing we can create?’ We talk each other into believing things are possible.”