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BURBANK, Calif. – Vista Federal Credit Union has taken a cue from Broadway for its latest annual report. Since 1999, the $346 million credit union’s creative annual report themes have run the gamut from a comic book to a children’s storybook. This year, Vista FCU drew inspiration from the popular theater magazine Playbill. “Our members are arguably the most creative people in the world,” said Vista FCU Director of Marketing/Business Development and Alternative Delivery Jim Kasch. “We wanted something fresh that hasn’t been done in the past and the Playbill was just the thing.” Titled Playbull, the report cover features a “play” called Little Bank of Horrors, which is the story of a “money hungry bank, its poor customers and the credit union that saved them.” Against the backdrop of a city, the Mega bank is depicted as a terracotta pot with a huge green plant with coins for teeth that uses its vines to shake money out of its customers or snatch purses from unsuspecting customers’ hands. “Once we decided to make our own playbill we brainstormed over play titles and the Little Shop of Horrors just clicked for what we wanted to accomplish,” said Kasch. In typical Playbill format, the Chairman and President’s message was laid out as an interview. The “Musical Numbers” showcased Vista FCU’s accomplishments from enhanced products and services to $1 billion in loans. In addition, the board of directors was presented as a “Who’s Who in the Cast” complete with fictional biographies. For example, Board Chair Kathy Clark is renowned in Broadway for her dead-on impression of Carol Channing while Vice Chair Ben Cowitt’s entertainment career includes a stint as “Beepo: the Mime In Your Way” on Candid Camera and as star of the smash Va Va Va Vista. “We’re very lucky our directors have a great sense of humor,” said Kasch. “We’ve always sent our reports to Disney representatives and this is a nice way to stand out, get some face time with our Disney members and remind them we are here.” This marks the first time the credit union did not turn to an outside agency. Kasch says the move helped shave some $4,000 to $7,000 off resolting in total cost of $10,000. From initial meetings in January the entire project took only a few months and the 4,000 reports were ready to be delivered by the end of March. “We realized that we were doing everything from generating the ideas to doing all the copywriting anyway so we decided to hire an art director and illustrator to get the look and feel of Playbill,” said Kasch. “It has been great fun and we’ve even gotten some nice compliments from the studio heads.” [email protected]

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