Reporting Sara Pelissero
When national touring artists stop at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, they leave with a little reminder of our Minnesota Nice. This series examines the locally made treasures given to these celebrity visitors.
Besides his classic fedora, the one accessory you’re sure to find on pop singer Bruno Mars is a sweet pair of shades.
Knowing this fun fact, the marketing department and PR wizards at the Xcel Energy Center came up with the idea to give the soulful singer a pair of locally made shades when he visits this weekend.
Mars will perform Sunday night as part of his “Moonshine Jungle World Tour,” featuring special guest Ellie Goulding. And with any luck, he may just perform with a fresh pair of MN sunglasses.
And this isn’t the first gift the Xcel crew has given.
“It started with a ‘Minnesota Nice’ concept — give each artist/band that comes through the facility a unique or custom or one-of-a-kind gift so that they never forget how wonderful the people in Minnesota are,” said Jora Bart, public and media relations manager at Xcel. “And the idea grew from there.”
Bart said they brainstormed unique ideas for each artist, with “an added bonus for coming up with a concept that tied to supporting a local business.”
Knowing Mars loves a good pair of sunspecs, the crew worked with a local spectacle shop called Eyes All Over to create three custom pairs of sunglasses.
Take a look at the final products below.
The Xcel Energy Center also worked with Minnesota designer Julia Leisz on a handmade floral tiara for Bruno Mars’ opening act, Ellie Goulding.
The singer later posted a photo on Instagram showing off her new headpiece.