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CANADA: Montreal’s Black & Blue Festival Returns, Details on AsialiciousTO and Calgary’s Vegfest, and More

NATIONAL: Hopin has announced that Wei Gao is the company’s first chief operating officer. She previously served as the worldwide vice president of product, technology and supply chain for Amazon Grocery and technical advisor to Jeff Bezos. At Hopin, Gao will lead operations and oversee the rapid growth of Hopin’s virtual event and shared experiences platform.

Hard Rock International has appointed a new director of global sales for meetings and events. The role is being filled by Shelley Williams, who brings 25 years of experience in global hospitality with companies like Caesars Entertainment and the Westmont Hospitality Group. She most recently served as vice president of sales at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City.

CALGARY: Vegfest Calgary takes place at Shaw Millennium Park on Sept. 4. The annual celebration of plant-based food and local businesses drew over 15,000 guests in 2019. This year’s event will have a new kid’s activity zone, along with a drag show in the beer gardens to honor YYC Pride Week, complete with rainbow-inspired beer from Cold Gardens.

MONTREAL: The 30th edition of Montreal’s Black & Blue Festival will take place Oct. 7-11. Hosted by Bad Boy Club MontrĂ©al, aka the BBCM Foundation, the event helps provide direct assistance to people with HIV/AIDS in Montreal, as well as local gay and lesbian community groups. In addition to the main festival, there will also be Carnival of Colors, a variety of free activities at three sites throughout the city complete with street arts, dance and circus performances, and more. 

TORONTO: Asian food festival AsialiciousTO will make its debut Sept. 11-26, with participating restaurants offering prix-fixe menus at discounted prices of $10, $20 or $30. Over 100 restaurants will participate, including Sugar Marmalade, Toronto Pho and Guyu-Kaku; many food trucks, cafes, bakeries and bubble tea shops will also be included. 

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