September 10, 2014: Highlights From Appleā€™s Launch Event, How Sports and Entertainment Apps Are Changing Live Events, Marriott Tests Kale Vending Machine

By Beth Kormanik September 10, 2014, 8:23 AM EDT

1. HIGHLIGHTS FROM APPLE’S LAUNCH EVENT: Apple’s product launch of new models of the iPhone and its debut of Apple Watch certainly was big. It involved the flashy product presentations, a mysterious event space created next to the Flint Center for the Performing Arts in Cupertino, California, and a performance by U2, whose new album was then given away free to all iTunes users. The event dominated tech blogs, Twitter, and water cooler conversation. Tech glitches marred the live stream of the event, with viewers seeing an “access denied” message or a screen with multicolored bars and a schedule of events. USA Today: “At one point there was a Mandarin translation playing over the event, adding to the confusion.” Apple’s event also took attention away from other tech events. The New York Times: “September is a busy month for product releases and wireless events, presenting a difficult choice for Apple’s rivals in the phone business. Should they stand down and let Apple hog all the attention? Or should they flood Twitter and tech news sites with advertisements, while bookending the iPhone release with their own events? For now, they’re picking the latter, which presents a logistical nightmare for anyone who might want to attend every event.”

2. HOW SPORTS AND ENTERTAINMENT APPS ARE CHANGING LIVE EVENTS: Event planners need to rethink the experience of live sports and entertainment events as they face pressure from the technology that makes it all too easy to skip the stadium experience altogether. Adweek: “It’s become commonplace to see entire sections of great stadiums empty. And without an evolving and engaging in-venue experience, the trend will only continue to keep butts out of seats. A response I continue to hear across multiple sports and event-based industries is, ‘Yes, our attendance is down, but our ticket revenue is up.’ In some circles, this even gets high fives in the belief that this indicates that people value the content and therefore are willing to pay more for it. This dangerous trend line is simply unsustainable.”

3. MARRIOTT TESTS KALE AND QUINOA VENDING MACHINE: Hotels are looking to serve health-minded guests in new ways, and Marriott is testing a vending machine with kale salads, greek yogurt with berries, and other dishes. Skift: “Marriott came up with the idea of installing vending machines with healthy food from its crowd-sourced campaign, which is geared toward developing new products and concepts.”


BOSTON:  FTW, the Food Trucks Watertown festival, comes to the Arsenal on the Charles September 13. The event features area food trucks, a beer garden, and live entertainment.

CHICAGO:  Hyde Park Art Center will celebrate its 75th anniversary with a BBQ Block Party on September 13. The event will include art workshops, artist performances, a petting zoo, and food trucks.

LAS VEGAS:  The Latin Recording Academy announced it would honor singer-songwriter Joan Manuel Serrat at a gala November 19 at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center.

LOS ANGELES:  The fifth annual Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic, Los Angeles returns to Will Rogers State Historic Park on October 11.

Local event listings from Masterplanner:

MIAMI/SOUTH FLORIDA:  The Wynwood location of hair salon Junior & Hatter will host an exhibition of photographer Andy Gallecher's work on Thursday, with drinks provided by Stolen Rum.

NEW YORK:  The former Rouge Tomate restaurant space in Midtown is available as a private event venue called Rouge Tomate Events through October. The 16,000-square-foot space seats 150 or holds 400 for receptions.

NYC & Company announced that Bernadette Carter was promoted to vice president of marketing for global tourism and convention development.

Actor and SAG Foundation board member Ron Perlman will return to host the foundation's second annual New York Golf Classic September 29 at Trump National Golf Club in Westchester.

Local event listings from Masterplanner:

ORLANDO:  Lakeridge Winery & Vineyards will host its Corks for Cancer Festival September 13-14 to benefit the Moffitt Cancer Center. The event will include live music, food, and Lakeridge Wines.

TORONTO:  The Artists for Peace and Justice fund-raiser, held at Casa Loma as part of the TIFF festivities, raised $1 million in donations.

WASHINGTON, D.C.:  Imagination Stage's annual gala and silent auction is October 18 in the nonprofit's Bethesda theater. Posh & Luxe is providing furniture rental and decor, and Ridgewells Catering is catering, along with Total Wine & More.

A new lifestyle TV program, The Sessions at the Inn at Willow Grove from Comcast’s Xfinity On Demand platform, is filming at the central Virginia resort and will kick off with a concert September 15 featuring Nick Lachey. A second episode to film on September 16 will show singer Kate Voegle participating in a cooking demonstration led by the inn's staff.

The National Conference Center and West Belmont Place has named Alan Reynolds the new director of food and beverage.

YOUR NEWS: What are you doing? Tell us:

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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.

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