Call Sheet #381: How the Event Industry Is Bouncing Back From Sandy

November 1, 2012, 1:15 PM EDT


Hi there. First: If you're located in the path of Hurricane Sandy, we hope you and your colleagues and loved ones are safe and sound. We wanted to let you know that, after being down temporarily due to the storm, BizBash.comis now up and running. While our New York headquarters are still without power, our team is safe and working—and reporting news—remotely. 

Because we think getting the latest industry intelligence becomes even more crucial at times like this, we're sending a special edition of the Call Sheet, our daily news email, to all BizBash readers today. If you like what you see below, please subscribe here: 

More on the effects of Hurricane Sandy are on our live blog: 

However this week has affected your events, we wish you luck. And please let us know what you're up to:

—Chad Kaydo, editor in chief, BizBash

BIZBASH CALL SHEET — #381 — SPECIAL EDITION — Thursday, 11.01.12

++ Sponsored by Event Leadership Institute ++

Compiled today by Chad Kaydo in New York
Feed the Sheet:


1. MANY CANCELLATIONS THIS WEEK: As transportation services start to resume but vast sections of the New York metro area remain without power in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, business events scheduled for this week have largely being cancelled.

On Wednesday Lucky magazine cancelled the Lucky Shops V.I.P. event scheduled to take place Thursday night at 82 Mercer Street in New York. The Mashable Media Summit, a one-day conference scheduled for Friday at the Times Center, is postponed until November 30. Another tech-related conference, Uncubed, scheduled for Thursday and Friday, has also been postponed.

While Broadway shows resumed performances Wednesday, the Greenwich Village Halloween parade planned for Wednesday and the Knicks-Nets game on Thursday at the new Barclays Center in Brooklyn were cancelled. 

We may see business events resume next week—the planners, vendors, and venue managers we're speaking to say many events are tentatively still going on, as hosts assess their situations. The New York City Marathon is currently scheduled to go on as planned Sunday. Events outside of the hurricane's path are largely going on as planned, although the closing of New York-area airports has affected the availability of some attendees, speakers, and vendors.

But mostly: We don't know. A friend emails: “We have a HUGE event coming up next week. Any idea what others are doing? Want to have the event, but can’t do it if the power’s out…there’s no way it will take that long to get power back…right?!?”

Are you going forward with events? Rescheduling? Let us

2. VENUES LOOKING TO BE OPEN NEXT WEEK: The flooding and loss of power following Hurricane Sandy have resulted in temporary shutdowns of event venues and hotels across the tristate area. We won’t know the full scope of the situation for a few days, but based on conversations with several venue managers, it seems many venues in New York’s Zone A are assessing and cleaning up damages and hoping to reopen by next week. (Some, like Galapagos Art Space in Brooklyn's Dumbo neighborhood, are planning to open their doors by Friday). 

Liz Bickley at the Park Avenue Armory on the Upper East Side: “The Armory’s been pretty lucky…[when the storm hit on Monday] we were in a load-in period for an art show that was supposed to open tonight. The opening was pushed back to tomorrow and it’s been business as usual.”

Jennifer Blumin, president of Skylight Group, which has several event spaces in New York that were not damaged: “Everything for next week is still on, but clients are assessing.”

The boardwalk in Atlantic City was hit harder than the New York waterfront, but still, according to news reports, the 12 waterfront casinos made it through unharmed for the most part (reporting just broken windows, small water leaks). Casino regulators were visiting on Wednesday to determine when the casinos can reopen.

Congress Hall in Cape May, New Jersey, reopened for business Wednesday. General manager John Daily: “No events were affected nor cancelled. There are three weddings this weekend and everyone is coming.”

3. EVENT VENDORS HELPING EACH OTHER RECOVER: The Red Hook neighborhood in Brooklyn, a place where many event-related vendors have studios and storefronts, experienced serious storm damage due to flooding from the hurricane.

Matt Lewis of Baked has been active in keeping area businesses informed on how to apply for federal assistance. The Red Hook Initiative (located at 767 Hicks Street, which has power and didn’t experience flooding) is working with the community to coordinate volunteer resources for residents and businesses to aid with clean up.

Kerry Quade emailed: “As far as the event community goes, Twitter was a great resource to stay connected, ask for help, and find out information...I have had an outpouring of support from fellow event folks as far as work space and such.”

Last night New York-based event designer David Beahm emailed: “Within minutes of hearing that our production studio had flooded (thankfully, not horribly), Michael Day, Jes Gordon, Shawn Rabbideau, and Michele Rago had all volunteered their spaces and assistance. Knowing that I was trapped out of town and that our offices were not usable, Ed Libby personally invited my staff to his home for electricity, Internet, and a shower. With five jobs facing us this weekend, how could anyone call these fine people 'competition?'”

And from Jennifer Blumin of the Skylight Group: “We have joined with industry partners Creative Edge, Rainbow Broadband, and Bentley Meeker Lighting & Staging to set up workstations for about 70 people in the Studio at Skylight West. (The Gallery at Skylight West is being made into a temporary kitchen for Creative Edge, who has been displaced by the storm.) We'll have power strips, tables, chairs, Wi-Fi, and hot coffee starting at noon [Thursday] and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday. This is reservation-only at this point…We don't want to let power issues prevent the event industry from getting back to work!”

 ++ A WORD FROM OUR SPONSOR: Event Leadership Institute ++
Featured Video Class: Delivering Value for Event Sponsors | 1 hour, 10 chapters. Learn tips and strategies for making your sponsor relationships more fruitful and valuable.


REMEMBERING LETITIA BALDRIGE: The Washington Post: “Letitia Baldrige, who was social secretary to first lady Jacqueline Kennedy and also became known as a 'doyenne of decorum' and chief arbiter of good manners in modern America, died October 29 at the Sunrise at Fox Hill nursing facility in Bethesda. She was 86…she was perhaps best known for her years in the Kennedy White House, where she helped create and polish the enduring Camelot image of romance, elegance, and sophistication.

The New York Times: “Ms. Baldrige, who stood 6 feet 1 inch tall and became known for her elegant silver hair, long contended that the heart of all etiquette was consideration for other people, rather than a rigid set of rules."

The Post also has remembrances from other social secretaries. Here's Capricia Marshall, a White House social secretary for the Clintons and the current chief of protocol for the U.S.: “When we raised our glasses to toast, she held up a hand and said: 'Ladies, ladies. We do not clink our glasses to toast. We approach.’”

YOUR NEWS: What are you doing? Tell us:

JOB BOARD: Post a job or find a job:

With contributions from Jenny Berg in Chicago, Alesandra Dubin in Los Angeles, Mitra Sorrells in Orlando, and Melissa Ward Schorsch, Anna Sekula, Ellen Sturm Niz, Lauren Matthews, and Jill Menze in New York.

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