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Little Rock Navy Week

Special Events

The Navy Week program is the U.S. Navy’s primary outreach event in parts of the country that do not have a significant Navy presence. Ghidotti was hired to ensure that Little Rock’s first-ever Navy Week was successful, reaching audiences across the Central Arkansas area.  

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The Situation:

Little Rock’s first-ever Navy Week event kicked off Oct.16, 2017, at the Inland Maritime Museum in North Little Rock with a ceremony and performance by Navy Band Southeast. Little Rock is one of only 15 cities that hosted Navy Week activities in 2017. The U.S. Navy brought musicians, a dive team, interactive simulators and more to central Arkansas for its inaugural event.

Although Navy Weeks are not focused on recruitment, they serve a broader awareness purpose. A particular focus is the emerging Centennial Generation who are aware of the Navy, but say they have little to no understanding of the Navy’s full mission, reach and influence. Navy Week events demonstrate why having a strong Navy is critical to the American way of life. Since 2005, 195 Navy weeks have been held in 71 different U.S. cities.

Ghidotti was tasked with encouraging Central Arkansans to participate in the many events planned from Oct. 16-22 and raise awareness of how the Navy specifically helps Arkansas.

The Strategy:

Navy Weeks aim to engage their host communities in many ways, so it’s important to connect Navy officials with chambers of commerce, major employers and key leaders in the area, as well as Rotary, Kiwanis, Lions and other civic and service-oriented organizations. Mayoral, county and gubernatorial proclamations are key events in every Navy Week, as are meetings with local city councils and county commissions. We used our connections in the community to create a master spreadsheet of all possible connections and events, and went to work prioritizing the list in partnership with the client and scheduling specific meet-and-greets, speaking engagements and more.

Media relations was a major goal, and we went to work creating a comprehensive plan to hit all major media outlets in the state to create momentum and buzz for Little Rock’s first-ever Navy Week.

Events we planned, managed and executed throughout the week included a kick-off ceremony with Navy Band Southeast at the Inland Maritime Museum, Navy diver demonstrations at the local aquatics center, a workshop at the University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service to teach small businesses how to do business with the Navy and a top Navy official speaker at the state’s largest and oldest civic organization, The Rotary Club of Little Rock, which meets in the Clinton Presidential Library.

Little Rock Navy Week Media Coverage Ghidotti Communications Arkansas


The Results:

The inaugural Little Rock Navy Week was a resounding success with a total of 65 events reaching a variety of audiences (general public, veterans, students, civic groups, corporations, media and more). More than 20 community and civic events and meetings were specifically planned and executed by the Ghidotti team, well over the client’s goal of seven. Media coverage included stories from every major media outlet in Central Arkansas, leading up and through Navy Week, including an interview with the Arkansas Democrat Gazette, the statewide paper, and a live event with the Navy diving team showcasing their unique equipment on the top television station.

Almost 3 million impressions were generated throughout the week from media, social media and events.


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