The first Saturday morning of the Calgary Stampede features a jam-packed schedule of pancake breakfasts. But there was only one breakfast in town that had 100 girls in bikinis and cowboy boots to raise money for Special Olympics Calgary – the #bikiniespy Stampede Breakfast.
#bikiniespy was a lot more than just flapjacks. The fashion stylists at espy experience, the affordable designer boutique in Inglewood, raised over $25,000 for Special Olympics Calgary when we asked a hundred girls to line-up outside our doors in their bikinis and cowboy boots for a Stampede outfit valued at $500. Every single girl in line donated over $100 through personal donation and sponsorship from family, friends, and co-workers. The top donation from the #bikiniespy line-up participants was $1100 – and the very first Miss Bikiniespy has officially been crowned!
The honored guests were of course the Special Olympic athletes who congratulated the girls in line, posed in some pictures, and enjoyed the morning of entertainment thanks to special guests ILLFX Entertainment, The Coachmen, and country music star Ryan Laird. Even Calgary’s most charitable celebrity, Brett Wilson and his famous pup Cash, participated in the morning fun while greeting the athletes and their families.
The girls spent the morning dancing with ILLFX Entertainment when they popped by to teach the espy flash mob choreography. Athletes, espy staff, photographers, families, and volunteers stopped traffic on 9th Avenue SE as the Inglewood Sunfest Secret was previewed with the espy flash mob. Edgar Gilbert-Reyes, the choreographer of ILLFX and former So You Think You Can Dance Canada contestant, pumped up the crowd with lots of personality and helped to spread the joy of the flash mob with espy’s next community project.
By 9am the girls were inside the store to get their Stampede started with sponsored items from Fidelity, Mavi, Niki Biki, and Smithbilt – and the breakfast was officially ready to be served up by Craft Beer Market! The crowds lined up around the corner of the cul-de-sac to make their donation to the SOC and get their fill of pancakes and eggs.
The athletes, volunteers, and espy staff kicked off the Stampede in the name of charity! The goal to raise $20,000 for Special Olympics Calgary was not only met, but far surpassed thanks to all participants, donors, sponsors, and volunteers. And espy was able to bring some of our infamous flair to the event by promoting love for yourself, your body, and community – all in style!
Lots and LOTS of photos to come!
the espy stylists