February 13, 2014: AOL Chief Bolsters Image at Conference, Winter Storms Wreak Havoc on Events, Sinkhole Causes Major Damage at Corvette Museum

By Beth Kormanik February 13, 2014, 8:11 AM EST

1. AOL CHIEF BOLSTERS IMAGE AT CONFERENCE: Embattled AOL C.E.O. Tim Armstrong used the company’s new Makers Conference for some image repair by joining a session where he would interview a 10-year-old girl who plays football. The conference, intended to focus on women in the workplace, may seem like an odd fit for Armstrong, who had to apologize last week after blaming cuts to the company’s retirement plan on the health care costs of covering two “distressed babies” last year. Armstrong’s appearance came with a caveat: He did not take any questions. Valleywag:

2. WINTER STORMS WREAK HAVOC ON EVENTS: This winter’s deluge of snowstorms has led event planners to cancel events and devise contingency plans with the changing forecasts. Even milder areas are feeling the effects. CBS Philly: “You can have your event anywhere, but if your people, your attendees, your guests are unable to get out of their towns to get to the location, it doesn’t matter,” one Philadelphia-based planner said.

3. SINKHOLE CAUSES MAJOR DAMAGE AT CORVETTE MUSEUM: A sinkhole beneath the National Corvette Museum in Kentucky swallowed eight cars, with the disaster captured on security cameras. USA Today: “If the sinkhole had opened up later in the day when the museum was open, things could have been a lot worse.” See the video here:


Association of Destination Management Executives International has elected a new board of directors. They are: president Jennifer Patino, C.E.O. of Hosts Global; president-elect Bent Hadler, C.E.O. of Hadler DMC; vice president administration David Rome, vice president of business development at BBC Destination Management; vice president finance JB Ryan, Access Destination Services—Florida; immediate past president Liz Keyser, principal, AlliedPRA Northern California; and directors Nathan Boyd of Rocky Mountain Connection; Cosimo Bruzzese of Briggs Inc.; Brian Ferrell of Factor 110; Amberlee Huggins of CSI—DC and Florida; Marty MacKay of Hosts Global; and Lorenzo Pignatti of +39 Events, Italy.


BOSTON:  On February 20, Boston Common magazine will celebrate its spring issue with a bash at Towne Stove & Spirits. Cover star Matt LeBlanc will appear, and Double Cross Vodka will provide specialty cocktails.

CHICAGO:  Steppenwolf Theatre Company will host its annual gala on May 3 at its North Halsted Street campus.

MIAMI/SOUTH FLORIDA:  The Chase, a nightclub, event venue, and grill in Fort Lauderdale, opens March 6. It includes five bars, V.I.P. sections, a stage, and the Prive Bar and V.I.P. Lounge on the second floor.

NEW YORK:  Chef Charlie Palmer will run all of the eateries at the Knickerbocker Hotel—a café, a grab-and-go market, and a rooftop lounge. The hotel is slated to reopen in late summer after a two-year full renovation. New York Post:

Local event listings from Masterplanner:

ORLANDO:  Wet 'n Wild Orlando will open a new attraction this summer. The Aqua Drag Racer will be six stories tall and propel guests at 15 feet per second through enclosed tunnels.

TORONTO:  Terroir Hospitality Symposium will be held at Arcadian Court on May 12. Considered Canada's leading hospitality symposium, the event brings together chefs, food and wine experts, restauranteurs, and other big names in gastronomy.

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

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