By Kyle O'Brien, Creative Works Editor

September 27, 2019 | 3 min read

In Game of Thrones, important messages were always delivered by ravens, so in honor of the Chicago Humanities Festival"s (CHF) fall speaker – Thrones author George RR Martin – the organization sent a direct mail campaign by actual ravens.

The stunt, done in partnership with FCB Chicago, encouraged community members to get tickets to the event by having tiny invitational scrolls delivered by ravens all across the city.

Chicagoans may have seen the special deliveries overhead at local houses, high-rise apartments or notable Chicago destinations. A video shows the big black birds flying throughout the city, dropping the scrolls on doorsteps, tour buses and even news sets. Martin also tweeted about the event.

The scrolls were delivered throughout the city to encourage Chicagoans to become members of CHF, gaining early access to tickets year-round, including Martin’s speaking engagement at Chicago Symphony Orchestra on 11 October. Some notable upcoming speakers include Patti Smith, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Henry Louis Gates, Jr and John Hodgman.

“We knew we had to celebrate having the brilliant mind behind A Game of Thrones as an upcoming speaker in a unique and authentic way,” said Philippe Bahar, Chicago Humanities executive director. “Utilizing trained ravens to deliver our announcements felt like the perfect way to tap into the beloved series while also inspiring the community to discover what we’re all about. Our organization hosts more than 130 events a year that we know people who enjoy creative and thought-provoking topics would love to participate in.”

Added Avi Pinchevsky, FCB Chicago senior vice-president, executive creative director: "Chicago Humanities Festival brings such amazing speakers to Chicago. When we heard that George RR Martin was coming, we knew we had to spread the word in a way that speaks to his work – the first-ever direct mail campaign delivered by raven."

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