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July 13, 2017: Couples Are Throwing Lavish Weddings—by Eloping, Twitter to Live Stream First-Ever Electronic Music Awards, Hakkasan Group Partners With Proximity to Expand Live and Digital Audience

1. COUPLES ARE THROWING LAVISH WEDDINGS€—BY ELOPING: Instead of inviting family, friends, and plus-ones, some couples are throwing extravagant weddings by eloping. The New York Times: “Gone are the days when elopement almost always meant only that spontaneous trip to City Hall. Many of today’s couples are planning their elopements more closely than ever, some plotting secret ceremonies several months in advance and spending $15,000 or more for their dream weddings—without a hundred of their closest family and friends. They search for stunning exotic backdrops for their ceremonies, shop in secret for the perfect dress, hire florists to arrange a Pinterest-worthy bouquet, hire photographers, even order specialty cakes. But in lieu of the invitations, friends learn about the wedding afterward in a cheeky Facebook or Instagram post, a photo announcing, ‘We Eloped.’ Statistics are hard to come by concerning how many couples are forgoing the big wedding to elope. But in the last few years, interest in eloping has created a cottage industry of photographers in romantic locales like Paris, New York and Hawaii that specializes in photographing eloping couples. In 2014, Jennifer MacFarlane, a wedding photographer in Bushwick, Brooklyn, founded a company called Eloping Is Fun with her husband, Matt Levy, who also runs a tour guide company. For $2,100 for a three-hour wedding, Ms. MacFarlane scouts the perfect location and shoots the photographs the day of the wedding. Her husband interviews the couple so he has enough anecdotes to write a highly personalized ceremony, and then he officiates. Their first year, they married 20 couples. Last year, they wed 60. … Of course, there’s a downside to eloping. Family members are often stung when they get the news — parents’ dreams of seeing their son at the altar or their daughter walking down the aisle crushed, since they’ll never share with their child one of life’s greatest traditional rites of passage.”

2. TWITTER TO LIVE STREAM FIRST-EVER ELECTRONIC MUSIC AWARDS: The inaugural Electronic Music Awards, taking place in the Downtown Arts Districts in Los Angeles September 21, will be streamed live on Twitter. Adweek: “Advertisers can get in on the action with packages that include television-style spots as well as original clips for sponsorship and promotion on Twitter. With faster internet connections and devices and better technology making livestreaming easily accessible to both creators and viewers and the increased engagement generated by live videos compared with static video posts, the medium has been charging ahead in 2017. Twitter has been inking livestreaming pacts at a frenetic pace in sectors including news, sports, music and esports. It’s also reached deals to livestream red-carpet shows and other coverage from the ESPYS, San Diego Comic-Con, the Electronic Entertainment Expo, the Grammy Awards, the Academy of Country Music Awards, the Billboard Music Awards, the American Music Awards and the Golden Globes. And while Twitter has been the most prolific social network in the field, it is far from alone, with Facebook and YouTube signing their share of livestreaming agreements. The Electronic Music Awards will be produced by Live L!ve Media. Executive producers include three-time Grammy-nominated producer and DJ Paul Oakenfold and live events production company Hunt & Crest.”

3. HAKKASAN GROUP PARTNERS WITH PROXIMITY TO EXPAND LIVE AND DIGITAL AUDIENCE: Hakkasan Group, an international hospitality company that operates a variety of upscale restaurants and nightclubs, has partnered with YouTube dance curator Proximity to expand the reach of both platforms. Billboard: "Proximity, led by founder Blake Coppelson, boasts an audience of nearly five million YouTube subscribers, and has become an influential taste-maker in the electronic music space. 'This partnership is a stepping stone for us to move offline and start co-producing live events,' Coppelson tells Billboard. 'Our goal is not to sponsor events, but rather enhance the experience that attendees feel at each show across the U.S.' Given Proximity's vast online reach to dance music listeners and Hakkasan Group's ever-growing authority in the live space, the alliance between the two seems to be a perfect match.  Sal Wise, Hakkasan Group's Executive Director of Nightlife Marketing, says, 'We are extremely excited to be working with Proximity and to explore a different platform to reach our audiences. Proximity holds an immense influence within the electronic music industry, and we are really looking forward to producing innovative content to engage our viewers in a new way.' The two recently partnered up during EDC Las Vegas week in June to co-brand numerous events at Omnia Nightclub, Hakkassan Nightclub and Wet Republic, including shows where superstar DJs like Martin Garrix and Kaskade headlined. Hakkasan Group plans on enlisting the support of Proximity, and vice-versa, on major events going forward—including shows taking place Labor Day Weekend where Calvin Harris, Zedd and more will be gracing the stage."


ATLANTA:  During her summer internship program this year with Melt—a sports and entertainment marketing agency—Kennesaw State University student Julia Miller traveled to Haiti to create the Holy Water Foundation, which aims to provide clean drinking water to people worldwide. Melt founder and C.E.O. Vince Thompson also traveled Haiti in June on behalf of Project Goals Soccer, so he could learn more about the project that uses soccer as a motivational and educational tool for Haitian youth. 

CHICAGO:  Edgewater’s fifth annual Edge Fest will take place August 5-6 on Broadway Street from Thorndale to Ardmore. The family-friendly event features local vendors and musicians. 

LOS ANGELES:  Dream Hollywood, the West Coast flagship for Dream Hotels, opened Wednesday. The 178-room hotel has 3,000 square feet of dedicated meeting space, along with an 11,000-square-foot rooftop pool, restaurant, and lounge, and an 1,800-square-foot Guest House suite with a private screening room and 360-degree views. 

A pop-up art exhibition from Val Kilmer will be on display at the Gabba Gallery on July 22. The exhibit also will open to press and V.I.P. July 20, and at a R.S.V.P.-only event on July 22. 

For information on upcoming events in Los Angeles, visit Masterplanner:

MIAMI/SOUTH FLORIDA:  Crate: Plant-based Kitchen, Bar & Lounge has opened in Brickell. Founded by restaurateur and designer Anselmo Di Virgilio Hernandez, the 3,700-square-foot restaurant seats 152 and serves vegetarian and vegan plates from chef Christopher Baugh. 

Miami magazine’s ninth annual Splashion swimsuit runway show will take place July 18 at Nikki Beach, Miami Beach. 

To celebrate the opening of the Haroon Mirza exhibit at Perez Art Museum Miami, sponsored by John Varvatos, the art institution is inviting people to an evening of shopping, cocktails, and music on July 19 at John Varvatos Bal Harbour, at the Bal Harbour Shops. Visitors will receive a 20 percent discount, and 10 percent of proceeds will benefit P.A.M.M.

NEW YORK:  Miami-based Sugarcane raw bar grill is slated to open its third location in August at 55 Water Street in Brooklyn. The 11,000-square-foot, 300-seat restaurant will offer globally inspired small plates from an open fire grill, raw bar, and traditional kitchen. The menu will be helmed by executive chef and partner Timon Balloo. 

SculptureCenter’s annual benefit gala will take place October 26 at Anable Basin in Long Island City. 

For information on upcoming events in New York, visit Masterplanner:

ORLANDO/CENTRAL FLORIDA:  Terralina Crafted Italian will open this fall at Disney Springs. It will take over the space formerly occupied by Portobello Country Italian Trattoria. Leading the concept design for the new restaurant is James Beard Award-winning chef Tony Mantuano. 

TORONTO:  Wet Banana, an L.G.B.T.-focused daytime dance party, will take place July 22 at Island Cafe.

WASHINGTON, D.C.:  Six Flags America will host Capital Pride Alliance, NOVA Pride, and Baltimore Pride on July 29 for the fifth annual Pride Splash & Ride celebration and fund-raising event.  

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With contributions from Claire Hoffman in Los Angeles, Mitra Sorrells in Orlando, and Beth Kormanik, Michele Laufik, Jill Menze, Rayna Katz, and Ian Zelaya in New York.

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