The Florida Festivals and Events Association’s mission is to promote and strengthen the festival, event and fair industry in Florida through education, networking, dissemination of information, and the cultivation of high standards for the industry.

We strongly feel that we do this through the FFEA SUNsational Awards Program, which recognizes its member’s innovation, individuality and creative collaboration.  SUNsational Award applications are available in February each year and awards are announced and distributed at the Annual Convention and Tradeshow during an luncheon ceremony. Application details and a link to apply online are all below. Applications will be accepted beginning in April 2016. 


Budget Categories

Events of all sizes are encouraged to submit entries. You will be judged among your peers in the same event budget category so you are competing with festivals with similar budgets. There are three event budget categories:
  • $49,999 and under
  • $50,000  - $249,999
  • $250,000 and over

Please submit each entry in one of these event budget categories. Budgets should include the entire budget for the event that you are entering, including all in-kind services. THIS WILL BE STRICTLY ENFORCED!

Award Categories & Judging Criteria


Judging Criteria

Submission Requirements

Printed Materials

Brochure / Postcard / Direct Mail Piece

Promotional Poster

Commemorative Poster

Program / Event Guide

Tickets & Invitations

Annual Report

Is the item’s message informative, clear, concise, compelling enough to engage the audience, easy to understand, possess exceptional design features and is it original? Judging done in person.

Submit a digital PDF or Jpeg of the item. Mail two copies of the original printed version to FFEA Office. No mounting required.

Outdoor Advertisement

Examples of outdoor advertising include, but are not limited to, over-the-street signage, street pole banners, bus signs, vehicle wraps/signs, sidewalk signage, billboards, trash can wraps, etc.


Is the message informative, clear, concise, compelling enough to engage the audience, easy to read, have visual impact, and original? Judging done online.

Submit a digital PDF or jpeg image of advertisement.

PR / Media Campaign

Includes Press Kit, Overall Media Campaign

Is the content creative and well-organized with a clear message? Judging done online.

Submit a digital PDF. Mail two originals to FFEA Office.


(Black & White or Color)

Does the photo have original and exceptional composition, use of light and color, and evoke an emotion or leave an impression?

 Judging done online.

Submit a digital jpeg of the photo image. Mail two copies sized at 8x10 or 5x7 to FFEA Office. Photos must be matted.

Promotional Item

Examples of promotional items include, but not limited to, souvenirs, hats, mugs, pins, volunteer / sponsor recognition items

Is the promotional item original, have visual impact, and serve a purpose for its target market? Judging done in person.

Mail two of each item to the FFEA Office. *Please note these become the property of FFEA and may not be returned.


Collared shirts should be entered under Promotional Items.  Examples include promotional shirts for sale and not for sale and volunteer shirts.


Does the tee-shirt display good use of design and originality?

Judging done in person.

Mail two of each item to the FFEA Office.  *Please note these become the property of FFEA and may not be returned.

Broadcast Media

Television Program, Ad, PSA or Video

Radio Program, Ad or PSA

Is the message informative, clear, concise, compelling enough to engage the audience, original, and have impact? Judging done online.

Submit YouTube link to video or upload to online application.

Multimedia Marketing


Mobile App

Social Media Marketing

Examples of social media marketing include, but are not limited to FaceBook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, webcasts, blogs, podcasts, Flickr, Pinterest, Linked In, GooglePlus, etc. 

Is the website/page/app informative, clear, concise, compelling enough to engage the audience, easy to navigate, have visual impact and does it possess exceptional design features and display originality?

Judging done online.

Submit link to webpage, social media site or app download link.


Sponsor Program

Volunteer Program

Green Program

Educational Program

Community Outreach Program

Does the program serve a purpose or objective, involve and benefit all partners, produce measurable results and is it an original idea? Judging done online.

Submit required documents online. Mail required documentation and any supporting documents in a clearly labeled binder.



  • Introduction & Background of main event and program
  • Effectiveness of Program
  • Partner Involvement



  • Printed Materials
  • Promotional / Marketing / Media Materials
  • Supporting Photographs
  • Measurable Results


*The categories listed below require a separate nomination process and do NOT require an application fee. To nominate an individual or organization for these awards, simply EMAIL your nomination and supporting documentation to the FFEA Office by July 8, 2016. 

Best Vendor / Supplier
This award nomination must be submitted by an event. Please give an overall description of the vendor’s product/service and why they stand out from their competition. Include number of years in business and length of partnership between the event and vendor.  Additional photos, documents and supplemental materials may be submitted along with nomination. Both the nominating event and the vendor must be current members of FFEA.
Most Innovative Project
This award will go to the individual or organization who has executed an innovative idea or project within the last year. Application should include detail of the project including the concept, implementation and results. Supporting printed materials, photos and measurable results may be submitted with the nomination. May be nominated by self or others.
Emerging Leader Award
The Emerging Leader Award will be awarded to a rising star in the Florida Festival & Event Industry. This individual should currently be either a volunteer, intern or staff member at an FFEA Member Organization who shows dedication and exemplary leadership within an event. Please include a description of the individual’s role in your organization and demonstrate their impact on your event. Supporting documentation may be included.

Frequently Asked Questions

1.    Where can I see the entries that were submitted? - All entries will be displayed at the convention and trade show – August 9-12, 2016 at the Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress Resort in Orlando, FL.

2.    When will winners be announced? - Winners will be announced at the 22nd Annual Convention and Trade Show Awards Luncheon, Wednesday, August 10th. Winners will be presented with an award to display. 

3.    Do I have to present to win? - Although we encourage you to attend the Convention and Tradeshow, you do not have to be present to win a SUNsational Award. 

4.    How can I view the winning entries? - A PowerPoint of all winning entries will be placed on the FFEA website. 

5.    Will press releases, on winning entries, be distributed? - Press releases, explaining the award and the competition, will be written and distributed to your local media sources and throughout the state.  We encourage you to send out press releases to your media contacts as well. 

Rules & Policies

  1. Only FFEA members are eligible to submit entries.
  2. You may only submit ONCE PER CATEGORY for each event you produce however you may enter in as many categories as you would like.
  3. Entries must have been produced and/or utilized between July 5, 2015 and July 5, 2016.
  4. Please pay close attention to the submission requirements. If submission requirements are not met, your entry may not be judged.
  5. All entries become the property of FFEA.FFEA assumes no liability for items lost, taken, or damaged.
  6. All entries must be submitted by July 8, 2016.
  7. All entries must include payment at time of submission.


Entries are judged by professionals in their fields of radio, television, photography, website development, promotions, graphics, advertising, public relations, marketing, social media, and special event production. The entries are judged through a point system based on the criteria listed for each category.

Three SUNsational Awards will be given in each award category; a best in category award and two runner-up awards, unless, in the opinion of the judges, no award is merited. The judges reserve the right to give multiple awards in a category if scores are tied.


The early entry fee for each entry is $25 for nominations submitted by June 26th. The entry fee between June 27 – July 8th is $35. You may pay the entry fee online with credit card or mail a check to: FFEA, 2115 Alameda Avenue, Orlando, FL 32804. All payments must be received prior to July 8, 2016 in order for the application to be included in the judging.