March 30, 2018: Automakers Lure Buyers With Virtual Reality at Shows, See What’s In Store for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s Bachelor and Bachelorette Parties, Study Finds Attending Live Music Events Is Good for Your Health

1. AUTOMAKERS LURE BUYERS WITH VIRTUAL REALITY AT SHOWS: Virtual-reality and augmented-reality experiences are commonplace at events—and the trend is now appearing at auto shows, as automakers seek to lure buyers with simulations. The New York Times: “The most sophisticated executions are developed primarily for events like the New York International Auto Show, opening to the public on Friday. At shows filled with outrageous concept cars and shiny models making their debuts, it takes more than a pretty car to stand out. Visitors might learn about an automaker’s plans for urban mobility while flying above a make-believe landscape, take a virtual reality sprint around a test track or scream down a drag strip at the wheel of a production-model hot rod. … While simulations put showgoers in the driver’s seat of a device that acts and feels like a real vehicle, virtual reality executions can pack a three-dimensional, 360-degree video environment—such as the interior of an automobile and the view through the windows—into a headset. The experience is often enhanced by electronic manipulation of the viewer’s seat. A number of automakers showed off such V.R. systems at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit in January, and the technology is already being used in dealerships. Ford has developed a V.R. display called City of Tomorrow. The experience includes a ride in a flying machine that rises above a make-believe urban landscape and shows off some of the company’s transportation technology. Dynamic control of the seat simulates acceleration and turning forces. It proved popular at the Detroit show and will be part of Ford’s display in New York.”

2. SEE WHAT€'S IN STORE FOR PRINCE HARRY AND MEGHAN MARKLE€�S BACHELOR AND BACHELORETTE PARTIES: With the royal wedding slated for May 19, plans for Prince Harry’s bachelor party and Meghan Markle’s bachelorette party are being finalized. Vanity Fair: “While details of both are being kept tightly under wraps, Vanity Fair understands that Markle has asked her close friend Markus Anderson to oversee her bachelorette party while Harry has put his brother, Prince William, and his best friend Tom Inskip in charge of his all-important sending-off party. Just last week Inskip, known as ‘Skippy’ to friends, was spotted doing reconnaissance on a suitably swanky boutique hotel in Mexico which has been earmarked as a possible stag party venue. … Meanwhile Markus, who engineered one of Harry and Markle’s first dates at Soho House in London in the summer of 2016, is spending every spare moment planning Meghan’s hen. Soho House played such a prominent part in the the couple’s early courtship. Harry first met Markle at 76 Dean Street and they spent several weekends at Soho Farmhouse in Oxfordshire. Perhaps Babington House, which can be taken over for private hire, might be a fitting venue? Meanwhile, Markle has been busily overseeing the more intricate details of the wedding day. From the elderflower-and-lemon cake which she has commissioned from Violet Cakes in East London to her dress (a state secret), Markle has been hands-on and according to a source, has a ‘very clear idea of what she wants on her wedding day.’”

3. STUDY FINDS ATTENDING LIVE MUSIC EVENTS IS GOOD FOR YOUR HEALTH: A new study reports that attending concerts can help you live longer. Variety: "According to research conducted by UK music venue O2 and Patrick Fagan, a Goldsmith University lecturer and expert in behavioral science, 20 minutes at a gig 'can lead to a 21 percent increase in [a] feeling of well-being,' reports the study. Comparatively, yoga increases well-being by 10 percent, and dog-walking by 7 percent. 'Additional scholarly research directly links high levels of well-being with a lifespan increase of nine years pointing to a direct link between gig-going and longevity,' states the report, noting that attending a concert once every two weeks could potentially expand a music lover’s life expectancy by nine years. The test subjects for the study participated in psychometric and heart-rate tests while performing multiple activities. While watching live music, feelings of self-worth and being close to others both improved by 25 percent. Mental stimulation was the most affected with an improvement by 75 percent."


BALTIMORE:  The third annual Light City, an international light art, music, and innovation festival, will take place over three weekends from April 6-21. 

CHICAGO:  The Reno-Sparks Convention & Visitors Authority has appointed Madeja Metcalf regional director of convention sales. Metcalf will be based in the company’s new Chicago office. 

LAS VEGAS:  Michael Mina Bellagio will reopen April 12, offering a reimagined seafood concept inspired by seafood feasts at marketplaces and seaside villages. 

LOS ANGELES:  Goya Studios, a new production studio and event space in Hollywood, will host its grand opening event on April 5. The campus spans 23,000 square feet and has three stages.

Interior and exterior design showcase Dwell on Design will run April 5-7 at the Los Angeles Convention Center.

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

NEW YORK:  The Tribeca Film Festival has announced new additions to its program, which include the world premiere of documentary film Horses: Patti Smith and her Band. Time’s Up will host its inaugural New York event, which will feature conversations with activists, filmmakers, storytellers, and lawyers, along with early supporters of the movement including Ashley Judd and Julianne Moore. The festival runs April 18-29. 

Poetry & the Creative Mind, the 16th annual benefit for the Academy of American Poets, will take place April 25 at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall. Uma Thurman, Tim Daly, Patty Griffin, Terrance Hayes, and more will perform their favorite poems in celebration of National Poetry Month. 

The 18th annual New York Indian Film Festival will take place May 7-12 at Village East Cinemas. 

Mossgrove, a public art installation created with scaffolding posts and a landscape of moss, is slated to be on display at the Design Pavilion at Times Square from May 12-20 during NYCxDesign. 

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

SAN FRANCISCO:  Five months after closing due to the Sonoma County wildfires, Kenwood Inn & Spa has reopened after a renovation that included 29 guest rooms, an updated lobby, and a new wine bar and cabanas. 

TORONTO:  The inaugural Tastemaker, an immersive food festival from I.M.G., will take place May 18-19 at Evergreen Brickworks. The event will offer dishes from chefs including Afrim Pristine, Elia Herrera, Ivana Raca, and Victor Barry. 

WASHINGTON, D.C.:  The Funk Parade, which began in 2014 and has attracted as many as 70,000 attendees, is struggling to attract enough money to stage this year’s iteration. A crowdfunding appeal has closed the gap, but organizers said it needs more corporate sponsors to survive. Washington City Paper:

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With contributions from Claire Hoffman in Los Angeles and Beth Kormanik, Michele Laufik, and Ian Zelaya in New York.

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