Regina city council not consulted about 'sexist' Experience Regina slogans: councillor

A Regina city councillor says she's working to hold the people responsible for the slogans used in Experience Regina's rebranding campaign accountable.

Marketing agency involved in campaign says 'unofficial' slogans weren't its doing

Woman in glasses and white blazer sits at chair in city council
Ward 1 Coun. Cheryl Stadnichuk said she wasn't aware of the slogans used in Experience Regina's rebranding campaign before they were publicized and is 'shocked' with their usage. (Kirk Williams/CBC)

A Regina city councillor said she was "flabbergasted" by the slogans that accompanied a Regina's tourism organization's rebranding campaign.

Experience Regina, formerly known as Tourism Regina, announced its rebranding Thursday alongside several new tourism slogans that were lambasted by the public for their sexual innuendo and immaturity.

Tim Reid, CEO of Experience Regina, said the overall theme of the rebranding was well received, but apologizing on behalf of the organization for two slogans: "Show us your Regina" and "The city that rhymes with fun."

"I just couldn't believe that this was a campaign to promote the city," Ward 1 Coun. Cheryl Stadnichuk said in an interview with CBC's Alexander Quon.

Stadnichuk said city council as a whole was not aware of, and did not approve, the slogans.

Stadnichuk pointed to sexual assault and intimate partner violence as reasons the slogans were inappropriate. She said victims of sexual assault and mothers were among those who contacted her to express offence.

LISTEN | A Regina woman who wrote a letter to Experience Regina outlines her thoughts on marketing campaign: 
Tourism Regina has left the city, to make way for its new brand Experience Regina. Reactions range from people cheering on the change to others calling it cringe-worthy. We hear from a Regina woman who wrote an open letter to the mayor and from a marketing expert.

Stadnichuk said promoting the inappropriate slogans "seems like a violation of any kind of decency."

"Although I'm thankful that REAL was quick to apologize for this, it is not enough."

REAL (Regina Exhibition Association Limited) is responsible for Experience Regina.

Experience Regina said it and its partners have removed all offensive and inappropriate content.

Holding the decision makers accountable

Brown Communications Group, an advertising agency that led the campaign, posted on Facebook about accusations that it had a role in the slogans.

"We are very proud of our work on the new logo and manifesto. However, we haven't had any involvement in the unofficial slogans," it said. "Nor were we consulted about their use."

On Monday, Kristen McLeod, a former Tourism Regina board member who was among the people who voiced opposition to the slogans, appreciated that Reid took responsibility for the campaign's misfires, but said the weight of the failures falls on the City of Regina and Mayor Sandra Masters.

A spokesperson for the mayor's office declined comment on Monday, stating Masters would speak on it after city council on Wednesday.

Stadnichuk posted to her city councillor Facebook page Monday afternoon calling for those responsible for the campaign and its messaging to answer to city council and the public.

"I want to express how incredibly disappointed and appalled I am with the sexist messaging of the new Experience Regina," she wrote. 

"Council appoints the members of the REAL board and we must demand accountability."

Stadnichuk's said the next step is gathering the six signatures from council members needed to request a special council meeting and put the wheels in motion to seek responsibility for those involved. She said she wouldn't outline what kind of accountability would be doled out before speaking with other councillors.

Stadnichuk said REAL could have consulted with council before launching the campaign, as it did before the launch of a rebrand of Economic Development Regina.

Women's rights advocate hopes action follows apology

Talitha McCloskey, the co-founder of Raise Her Community an advocacy group for women's rights, said the campaign's slogans were regressive, evoking a time when women didn't have rights and were objectified.

She said her first thought when she heard the slogans was that she must be in a fever dream.

"How is this appropriate for a municipal organization to put out in 2023, during women's history month after international women's day?" she said.

WATCH| Why this women's group calls Experience Regina's launch 'gross':

Why this women's group calls Experience Regina's launch 'gross'

2 months ago
Duration 3:33
Talitha McCloskey is the co-founder of the RaiseHER Community in Regina, a group that advocates for women in leadership. She calls the Experience Regina launch 'gross' and proposes a way to move forward in a positive way.

Her organization sent a letter to Tim Reid and Experience Regina's leadership voicing its concerns and insisting the apology extends into action, including a stronger, more thoughtful relaunch that includes a focus group to weigh in on decisions.

Reid said in an interview with CBC Monday that focus groups and stakeholders were a part of the campaign.

A statement published Monday night on the Experience Regina Facebook page said the organization is committed to involving "diverse stakeholder groups in our decision-making process" and will better evaluate aspects of the brand.

McCloskey speculated that people who don't understand what's wrong with the slogans haven't faced discrimination.

"It seems like the city thinks that vaginas are more of a tourist destination than being something that is sacred and protected," McCloskey said.


Dayne Patterson is a reporter for CBC News in Saskatchewan and is based in Saskatoon. He has a master's degree in journalism with an interest in data reporting and Indigenous affairs. Reach him at

With files from Alexander Quon and Bonnie Allen