December 1, 2015: Fake Ads Satirize Sponsors of Paris Climate Conference, Letterman to Donate Talk Show Set to University, Museums Face Scrutiny Over Tax Status

By Beth Kormanik December 1, 2015, 8:35 AM EST

1. FAKE ADS SATIRIZE SPONSORS OF PARIS CLIMATE CONFERENCE: Although authorities cancelled protest marches in Paris because of security concerns, environmental activists found other ways to make their point during the United Nations climate conference in the city. One effort involved a campaign that skewers corporate sponsors of the conference with fake ads. Mashable: “The UK-based guerrilla artwork group Brandalism took credit for taking over more than 600 advertising spaces on bus stops and street corners around the city and placing satirical ads nearly identical to those of the companies they skewer. The campaign's targets include corporate sponsors of the conference such as Volkswagen, Air France and Exxon Mobil, as well as various politicians in attendance like U.S. President Barack Obama, British Prime Minister David Cameron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.”

2. LETTERMAN TO DONATE TALK SHOW SET AND OTHER MEMORABILIA TO UNIVERSITY: The retired late-night TV host David Letterman will donate his talk show set, Emmy awards, and other memorabilia to Ball State University, his alma mater. The university made the announcement about the planned “The David Letterman Experience” before a event at the Indiana campus featuring Letterman interviewing film directors Spike Jonze and Bennett Miller on Monday. Indianapolis Star:

3. MUSEUMS FACE SCRUTINY OVER TAX STATUS: A Senate inquiry is asking museums including the newly opened Broad in Los Angeles questions about their operations to determine whether they meet federal regulations necessary to earn tax-exempt status. The New York Times: “Tax-exempt museums should focus on providing a public good and not the art of skirting around the tax code,” Senator Orrin G. Hatch of Utah said in an email statement to the newspaper. “While more information is needed to ensure compliance with the tax code, one thing is clear: Under the law, these organizations have a duty to promote the public interest, not those of well-off benefactors, plain and simple.”


AUSTIN:  On Monday, Vox Table will host a fund-raising benefit for the 5-year-old son of chef de cuisine Carlos Almaraz's who was diagnosed with leukemia. Sponsored by Caña Brava Rum, Fernet-Branca, and Aviation American Gin, the event will feature numerous Austin-based bartenders serving rum and gin cocktails.

BOSTON:  The Massachusetts Convention Center Authority has unveiled plans to help lower expenses for the Lawn on D, a popular concert and event venue slated to reopen in the spring. Boston Globe:

CHICAGO:  The sketch revue Forced Socialization: An Ode to Office Parties will play at the DeMaat Studio Theatre at Piper’s Alley on Fridays through December 18. The Second City:

LAS VEGAS:  The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority has reported that the city had its highest-ever monthly visitor volume in October with 3.78 million people. Las Vegas Review-Journal:

Westgate Las Vegas Resort & Casino will host a New Year’s Eve bash inside its Westgate Ballroom, where singer George Bugatti will perform with his six-piece ensemble.

LOS ANGELES:  The seventh annual Santa Monica Pub Crawl is slated to return to the city on December 12, with 30 bars and restaurants participating.

According to, more than 24 million custom emojis were used in tweets about the American Music Awards on November 22.

Local event listings from the new Masterplanner:

MIAMI/SOUTH FLORIDA:  Palette of Taste, the annual benefit for Touching Miami With Love, will take place Wednesday at Florida International University’s Biscayne Bay Campus in the Wine Spectator Restaurant Management Lab. Bill Hansen of Bill Hansen Catering, who is also a professor at the university, organizes the event.

NEW YORK:  Prostate Cancer Foundation will host its annual New York Dinner Wednesday at the Pierre Hotel. Whoopi Goldberg and John O'Hurley will host the event, which will feature performances by John Fogerty, Isabel Leonard, and Nathan Gunn.

Gotham magazine will celebrate its winter issue on Saturday with a brunch at the Arabelle Restaurant in the Hotel Plaza Athenée. Celebrating cover model Sandra Lee, the brunch will be followed by a ribbon-cutting for the 29th annual Miracle on Madison Avenue event, which benefits the Society of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.

Eater: “The upcoming Thomas Keller-curated restaurant collection at Hudson Yards just added two major new names: Spanish restaurant pioneer and ‘food hero’ chef José Andrés, and Greek seafood restaurateur Costas Spiliadis.”

Local event listings from the new Masterplanner:

ORLANDO/CENTRAL FLORIDA:  Guys With Ties will host its annual Hope for the Holidays toy drive event on Saturday at Blue Martini at Pointe Orlando. Orlando Sentinel:

PARIS:  Turnip soup, scallops in floral vapor, and celery confit with veined spinach cream are just some of the dishes Michelin multi-starred chefs prepared for the United Nations climate change lunch yesterday. Politico:

SAN FRANCISCO:  The pastry chef at the Westin St. Francis has created a 12-foot sugar castle. The holiday display has been in the works since June. ABC7:

TORONTO:  Drink Inc. will host “Hoppy Holidays” at the Berkley Church on December 8. The craft beer event will showcase beer cocktails and seasonal brews.

WASHINGTON, D.C.:  Chefs José Andrés, Marcus Samuelsson, and Bryan and Michael Voltaggio will open restaurants at MGM National Harbor. The 308-room resort is set to open in the second half of 2016.

President Obama’s final State of the Union address has been set for January 12 at the U.S. Capitol.

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With contributions from Jenny Berg in Chicago, Alesandra Dubin in Los Angeles, Mitra Sorrells in Orlando, and Beth Kormanik, Michele Laufik, Jill Menze, Anna Sekula, and Ian Zelaya in New York.

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