About 40 years ago I designed Canada’s first Inflatable outdoor board for Pacific Western Airlines. I was the creative director for WestCan’s Calgary office at the time. We needed a Big Idea to support a not so big outdoor media buy (one board each in Calgary, Edmonton and Montréal).I had read about the Inflatable in AdAge where a fast food chain had attached a huge Hotdog to a super board. The fabricator manufactured hot air balloons, big ones. The first of the three was erected in Calgary at a busy high way junction. The first morning we got tons of Free Air on drive time radio as the news,weather and traffic people had fun taking shots at it with bits of sexual innuendo here and there. The Calgary Herald ran a story with a full color picture in the morning addition. Things went on like that until it achieved a kind of Mascot status. Then came a harsh fall storm, rain, snow, hail and freezing tempertures and power outages. Our inflataboard was kept upright by means of a ducted fan and with the power gone the darn thing collapsed giving the media yet another opportunityto crack wise. When the fuselage re‐erected itself that got a mention to. The free PR was imeasurable and just goes to prove some Big Ideas are better off dead…than alive .
Jerry Huff, Geezer