TODAY debuted on January 14, 1952 with television host Dave Garroway. Sixty years later, viewers still tune to this popular news-and-information morning show to discover what has happened in the world since they went to bed the night before.

On January 14, 2011, TODAY began a countdown to its 60th business anniversary. The show posted a request on its website (, asking viewers to submit their favorite memories of TODAY, which would guide the show’s preparations for its 60th business anniversary.

Kudos to TODAY for investing a year in planning its milestone business anniversary! TODAY recognized that a 60th business anniversary happens only once in a business lifetime and that the celebration of a milestone business anniversary requires at least 12 months of strategic planning.

TODAY’s 60th business anniversary festivities spanned the week of January 9, 2012 and culminated on January 13, 2012 with a star-studded celebration that included:

  • Illuminating the Empire State Building with TODAY’s colors of red, orange and yellow. This was the first time in history that the iconic New York City skyscraper was illuminated to honor a television show. Also glowing with TODAY’s colors were the Falls at Niagara Falls, the Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas and the Sears Center in Philadelphia.
  • Flying the Goodyear Blimp over the Hollywood sign in Los Angeles with a “Happy 60th TODAY” display message.
  • Broadcasting a message of congratulations from President and Mrs. Barack Obama.
  • Receiving from New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg an official proclamation, designating January 13, 2012 at “TODAY Show Day.”
  • Reuniting former hosts Hugh Downs, Barbara Walters, Jim Hartz, Meredith Vieira, Katie Couric, Tom Brokaw, Jane Pauley, Bryant Gumbel and Deborah Norville.
  • Examining the role women hosts played through TODAY’s history; remembering the triumphant and the tragic events TODAY covered during six decades; exploring the legacy of TODAY on its 60th business anniversary.
  • Having actor Tom Hanks present a six-layer business anniversary cake decorated with “60 TODAY” and offering a champagne toast.

This 60th business anniversary celebration can inspire companies that will reach a milestone business anniversary in 2013. Transform your business anniversary into a “sell”-abration. Don’t squander the promotional opportunities a business anniversary offers. Take the time to plan your business anniversary “sell”-abration; in fact, start your planning for 2013 TODAY.

Happy 60th business anniversary, TODAY show!

Blogger  Bio: Pauline Bartel, M.A., is President and Chief Creative Officer of
Bartel Communications, Inc., an award-winning corporate communications firm,
specializing in marketing, public relations and business anniversary consulting
services. The firm  created “The Bartel Years™” and “The Bartel Years 200™,” rosters of business  anniversary symbols to inspire two centuries of business anniversary
“sell”-abrations. Download free copies of “The Bartel Years™” and the special
report “The Top 10 Business Anniversary Ideas for SELL-abrating Your Business
Anniversary” at this link: