February 4, 2015: Can Sundance Survive in the Crowdfunding Era?, Wedding Vendor Fined for Antigay Discrimination, Discovery Drops New York Upfront Event

1. CAN SUNDANCE SURVIVE IN THE CROWDFUNDING ERA?: With independent filmmakers able to raise money on crowdfunding sites like Indiegogo and Kickstarter, the purpose of an event like the Sundance Film Festival inevitably changes. It’s no longer necessary to go to find funding or distribution. TechCrunch: “While Sundance might no be a bottleneck for money any more, it is still a bottleneck for curation. ‘Festivals still act as a filtering system because buyers can’t see everything,’ says all-you-can-watch movie theater subscription service MoviePass’ CEO Stacy Spikes. The long-time Sundance veteran asserts that ‘It’s also the watering hole where everyone gets together.’ To go really big, you need the establishment’s help, ‘No matter how technologically savvy you are you still have to come meet people.’” http://tcrn.ch/18N83ZU

2. WEDDING VENDOR FINED FOR ANTIGAY DISCRIMINATION: Sweet Cakes by Melissa bakery in Oregon faces a fine of $150,000 for refusing to bake a wedding cake for a same-sex couple, the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries ruled this week. USA Today: "'Oregonians may not be denied service based on sexual orientation or gender identity. The law provides an exemption for religious organizations and schools, but does not allow private businesses to discriminate based on sexual orientation,' [bureau spokesman Charlie] Burr said." http://usat.ly/1zqEDHk

3. DISCOVERY DROPS NEW YORK UPFRONT EVENT: After years of hosting an elaborate presentation and after-party to promote its slate of cable networks, Discovery Communications will skip the entire event this spring. Advertising Age: “Discovery's abandonment of the longtime pitch-and-party model comes following last year's lackluster upfront marketplace, when advertisers pared down their commitments and decided to make more buys closer to air time in the so-called scatter market. … Turner Broadcasting is also taking a different approach to this year's upfront. The cable group said last month that it will have one big event for all of its channels, which include TNT and TBS, CNN and Cartoon Network.” http://bit.ly/1zzsVfL


ATLANTA:  C3 Agency, an experiential marketing firm, has moved its headquarters from Brooklyn to Atlanta's Inman Park neighborhood.

AUSTIN:  The iTunes Festival will not return to this year's South by Southwest. Austin Chronicle: http://bit.ly/1z8xYQC

BOSTON:  Developer National Development has released plans for a 200-room AC by Marriott Hotel in the South End. The hotel would open in 2017.

CHICAGO:  The Chicago Quarter Marathon is April 4. Now in its second year, the race takes place along the South Side lakefront; it’s followed by a party outside of Solider Field.

LAS VEGAS:  Kirsten Dimond is the new vice president of operations for Sands Expo Convention Center.

LOS ANGELES:  In a coup for the Los Angeles fashion scene, Tom Ford will debut his fall/winter womenswear collection at Milk Studios on February 20. It’s the first time he will show in Los Angeles.

Gloria Gaynor, Jessie J, and Arturo Sandoval will perform at Sunday’s Grammy Celebration, the Recording Academy’s official after-party. DJ Michelle Pesce will return to spin for the crowd.

Local event listings from Masterplanner: http://www.masterplanneronline.com/losangeles

MIAMI/SOUTH FLORIDA:  Centennial to Millenial Tourism Hall of Fame—a Broward 100 Event will honor people and institutions that have contributed to Fort Lauderdale tourism on Thursday at the Antique Car Museum. TravelHost publisher Ina Lee will host the event.

MONTREAL:  C2 Montréal announced a number of new speakers including Facebook vice president of global marketing solutions Carolyn Everson and Deloitte chief innovation officer Terry Stuart to its lineup for the conference, scheduled for May 26-28.

NEW YORK:  Capitale has named William Curran, founder of Curran Affair Events, as its new director of catering.

For the third consecutive year, Daniel restaurant will host members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences at an Oscars viewing party. The February 22 event will include a menu inspired by the best picture nominees and a cocktail served with an "edible envelope" garnish.

Local event listings from Masterplanner: http://www.masterplanneronline.com/newyork

TAMPA:  Busch Gardens will debut its Food & Wine Festival on weekends March 7-April 26.

TORONTO:  According to Tourism Toronto, the city's convention sector booked a record number of future hotel stays in 2014. Reps are now expecting some 463,400 guests to the city for 665 future meetings and conventions.

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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, and Anna Sekula in New York.

BizBash Daily is the must-read digest of event industry news from BizBash.com.

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