The Forum Supports the Alzheimer’s Society with Sci-Fi Fun


423scifiThe Forum Shopping Centre has chosen the charity it will work with for 2015: the Alzheimer’s Society.

As part of the 2015 charity partnership, Alzheimer’s Society will be able to use the centre’s regular events and activities as a platform to raise funds and awareness for their cause.

Jenny Dale, Alzheimer’s Society Community Fundraiser for Kent and East Sussex, said:

“It’s great that The Forum Shopping Centre are giving their time to support Alzheimer’s Society. Dementia is more than just memory loss; it robs people of their lives and has a devastating impact on families and loved ones. As a charity, we rely on the generosity of individuals and organisations like The Forum Shopping Centre to help us continue our vital work so that Alzheimer’s Society can continue leading the fight against dementia.”

The first event set to benefit the organization is The Forum’s upcoming Sci-Fi day on Saturday, May 2nd – where all funds generated from the futuristic fun event will go towards the centre’s new charity.

Along with stalls selling sci-fi products, visitors will have the opportunity to meet and get autographs from actors including Simon Fisher-Becker and Matthew Dale, who played Doctor Who’s Dorium Maldovar and Big John respectively, as well as Chris Bunn, the original Stormtrooper from Star Wars.

There will also be a life-size TARDIS and Dalek for the Whovians in the crowd, as well as a fancy dress competition, sci-fi quizzes and other fun activities.


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The Shops at Tanforan’s Babies Love Disco


423discoThe Shops at Tanforan recently got hundreds of its littlest shoppers together for a great big dance party: Baby Loves Disco, a free community event that’s all about getting moving and having fun.

The childproof disco party sounds like a blast. It featured a live DJ playing disco music for the kids, with one lucky dancer—6-year-old Gia Carpenter—winning a dance contest for a free fashion makeover at The Children’s Place. There were a ton of other fun options for kids, including arts and crafts, tablet activities, temporary tattoos and face painting.

And Baby Loves Disco didn’t just benefit the kids that made it out to dance. The center partnered with Project Night, Night, a non-profit that provides homeless children with the things they need to have a good night, like security blankets, children’s books and stuffed animals. Dance party participants generously donated those items to the cause before they danced the afternoon away.

“We loved seeing the children rock out to music from so many different decades during Baby Loves Disco, and witness how a community can truly come together and donate to a worthy and heartwarming cause such as Project Night, Night,” said Heath McCue, Director of Marketing, The Shops at Tanforan. “The Shops at Tanforan received an abundance of donations for the Night, Night Packages and we are so glad that the center and the community were able to help children in need.”

Center retailers also got in on the fun. Starbucks brought out free snacks and drinks, and BJ’s Brewhouse made sure everyone would be well fed afterwards with free pizza and desert coupons. Steve & Kate’s Camp also brought tablets for the non-dancing activities of the day.

You can check out a video of a bit of the fun on our Facebook page.


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Don’t Miss SPREE RECon 2015


423spreeHeading to Vegas for RECon next month? Don’t forget to schedule some time to visit SPREE RECon 2015, dedicated to the cart, kisok and temporary retail industry.

It’s a first for SPREE, which joined ICSC early last year, and it allows RECon to expand its scope to highlight the $8 billion specialty retail industry. If specialty leasing is an area of interest, you won’t want to miss it—and you may also want to consider attending RECon’s Professional Development Day on Sunday, May 17. The program is designed to help attendees enhance their career progression, develop new industry skills, keep abreast of new technology and best practices, earn credit towards professional certification, and grow the specialty leasing program’s bottom line.

“We are excited to incorporate SPREE as integral part of RECon for 2015. The integration will extend the show’s reach and will help grow the specialty retail market,” said Patricia Norins, ICSC vice president of specialty programs. “This collaborative effort will provide a leveraged
opportunity to benefit all sectors of the retail real estate industry under one roof.”

Not only does SPREE RECon include a trade show with nearly 200 booths—there are also more than 14 hours of educational sessions to enjoy. Interested in Innovative Ideas to Generate Ancillary Revenue for Shopping Center Developers or 10 Hot Food Concepts for 2015? Those are just a couple of the sessions available.

Best of all, since it’s part of RECon, you don’t need to register separately. Just show up and explore the world of specialty leasing.


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A Robotic Retail Takeover


While we’re feeling good about our smart mirrors, VR fashion shows and beacons, Japan has taken retail tech in another direction entirely. Meet Aiko Chihira, the robot who will serve as greeter and guide at department store Mitsukoshi Nihonbashi:

(via Gizmodo)


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Community Garden Launches at Botany Town Centre


423botanyBotany Town Centre has been leading the way with its environmental initiatives this year, and it’s just taken that notably further: the center’s community garden has officially launched.

Consider it a furthering of the center’s grind-to-ground program: the resulting fertilizer is a big part of the plan. It also makes the coffee lovers who contribute to that program part of something bigger—a major charity initiative.

The community garden is part of a partnership with the Botany branch of Bellyful east Aukland. Thanks to that partnership, the healthy produce grown in the garden will make its way to the kitchens of locals in need of fresh and healthy food.

Bellyful east Auckland branch co-ordinator Maree Adam was thrilled when approached by Botany Town Centre to be part of the community garden, which she says is a wonderful idea.

“Bellyful east Auckland relies on sponsorship and the donation of time, resources and product, so we were blown away when approached by Botany Town Centre. We are always on the lookout for vegetables and additional items to add to the Bellyful east Auckland menu and take pressure off new mums and families who need a bit of help, so this is a great development.”

The organization holds cook-a-thons twice a month, preparing meals for local families in need.

The garden will have other benefits for the community, particularly through the center’s Botany Tots program and other childcare services. They’ll have the opportunity to teach children about plants, fruits and vegetables, and show the kids just how a vegetable garden works.

Desiree Clark, the center’s senior marketing manager, shared her thoughts on the launch.

“We’re very proud of the community response to this vegetable garden; it was planted a couple of weeks ago in preparation for the launch and we’re looking forward to seeing it help those in need. A project like this has never been done before at a New Zealand shopping centre, and the team effort required to get it off the ground has really brought our staff together. We love that through this initiative we’re going back to our roots as a community hub and re-centralising the green and botanist ideals of Botany Town Centre.”

Pictured: Local MP Jami-Lee Ross, Maree Adam of Bellyful, Matt from Natural Habitats, one of the project’s sponsors, and Rachel Blair of Botany Town Centre.


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