They stay at work for you, so we can stay at home for them.
In the face of a global pandemic, when the only thing we can do is stay at home, how can we, as entertainment professionals, still help to bring the nation together and show support for the frontline workers?
The only way we know how — by creating an event.
Building off of the campaign’s original inception in the UK, Thinkwell Group decided to help bring the #LightItBlue movement to the US. In just two short weeks, Thinkwell brought together a collective of producers across the country and organized over 400 iconic landmarks and venues across 112 cities in 43 states to light up blue at the same time.
The #LightItBlue campaign invites businesses and venues across the country to simultaneously turn blue on Thursday nights, in order to celebrate, honor, and thank all of our American heroes and essential workers risking their lives on the frontlines of the pandemic.
Utilizing a network of now-empty entertainment venues, stadiums, and landmarks across the US, these spaces have been repurposed to spread a message of thanks for our frontline workers and broadcast it blue across the country.
All #LightItBlue venues and community efforts use existing LED technology to create the spontaneous flash of blue on facades and screens, run remotely or by workers already on site, to ensure the campaign adheres to the critical message from the government for people to stay at home.
The campaign kicked off on April 9th, 2020, at 8 PM local time, when hundreds of national landmarks, sporting arenas, and music venues across the United States — from One World Trade Center to Niagara Falls to the Staples Center — first lit up blue in a spectacular show of support and thanks to those on the frontlines.
“We’ve been so inspired over the past few weeks by the cheers of our neighbors around the world – and we wanted to bring this collective gratitude to an even bigger stage here in the U.S. This is a heartfelt ‘thank you’ from those of us at home to those of us who are going to work each day to keep our country going,” Thinkwell CEO Joe Zenas remarked.
The campaign has been a huge success, with over 400 venues and associations involved for the April 9 launch, and news stations, publications, and social media posts across the country spreading the message of thanks, reaching over 700 million people online. On the first night of the campaign, the hashtag #LightItBlue even made it to #7 trending on Twitter.
#LightItBlue didn’t end there. Due to the outpouring of support from all involved, the campaign has continued, expanded, and evolved. Every Thursday night, the gratitude continues to spread as more iconic venues and landmarks across the country, and now around the world, are getting involved.
Over the last few weeks, the campaign has spread beyond the US and the UK to become a global movement. From Tokyo to Madrid to Singapore, other global countries and communities are lighting it blue, with more participants joining every Thursday.
While cities across the globe lighting it blue, the movement has also spread beyond buildings and back to the people with #MakeItBlue.
The #MakeItBlue initiative encourages anyone to join the movement and share in the massive “thank you” to our frontline workers while staying safe indoors, by flooding social media with the color blue. People are invited to create blue-themed images, videos, and content, and share them online with the hashtag #MakeItBlue.
In the face of anxiety and uncertainty during an unprecipitated time in history, the #LightItBlue and #MakeItBlue campaigns aim to show a massive gesture of solidarity and support across the nation and beyond. Even from 6 feet apart, we stand together against an unseen threat to shine brighter and remain stronger than ever. To learn more about #LightItBlue and #MakeItBlue in the US, check out makeitblue.us.