Hospitality Committee for U.N. Delegations Ambassadors Ball
THE SCOOP: Ambassadors and business folk turn out for the black-tie Ambassadors Ball, which raises funds for the Hospitality Committee's volunteer efforts to support visiting dignitaries. Last year U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan and his wife, Nane, were honored for their humanitarian efforts.
BEHIND THE SCENES: Last year Shana Fried, administrative director of the Hospitality Committee, worked with Secret Service agents to go over security measures for important government guests. The Pierre Hotel hosted and catered the event, and Stefan Flowers provided floral arrangements.
THIS YEAR: Back at the Pierre Hotel sometime in November
Read our coverage of last year's event...
Rockefeller Center Holiday Tree Lighting
THE SCOOP: New York City's holiday season kicks off the week after Thanksgiving, when Rockefeller Plaza becomes a holiday-themed showplace for both tourists and New Yorkers.
BEHIND THE SCENES: The tree takes about two-and-a-half weeks to decorate before the big celebration. Last year's ceremony attracted 250,000 and was headed by first lady Laura Bush and Mayor Rudy Giuliani. NBC's Al Roker and Ann Curry hosted, and Marc Anthony and Destiny's Child performed live. Pre-recorded presentations by Tony Bennett and the Radio City Rockettes were presented on huge video screens provided by Daktronics. NBC/WNBC and the center's owners, Tishman Speyer, held corporate parties in the Rock Center Cafe and Sea Grill with d?cor by Botanica Inc.
THIS YEAR: The 70th annual tree lighting ceremony will happen in late November
Read our coverage of last year's event...
National Book Foundation's National Book Awards
THE SCOOP: The nation's preeminent literary prizes since 1950, the National Book Awards ceremony and dinner rewards literary achievement in four genres: fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and young people's literature.
BEHIND THE SCENES: For the past three years the usually black-tie event--which draws the literary elite as well as the winning authors--has been at the Marriott Marquis. Ellen Ryder Communications does the PR.
THIS YEAR: Ellen Ryder is back; the exact date and venue have yet to be determined, but look for it in November
New York City Marathon
THE SCOOP: One of the most famous marathons in the country, this event takes over New York on race day with a route that passes through all five boroughs. Last year it drew two million spectators and 30,000 runners from every state and 99 countries. The international talent means the competition for the prize purse of $80,000 and a car is always tough.
BEHIND THE SCENES: The New York Road Runners Club does all the planning, and gets help from nearly 3,000 NYPD officers and private security firm Protective Strategies Group. Major sponsor Ronzoni hosts a pre-race pasta dinner at Tavern on the Green the night before the race.
THIS YEAR: Runners take off on November 3
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater Opening Night Gala
THE SCOOP: Bold-face names like James Earl Jones, Bill Cosby, Janet Jackson, Susan Sarandon, Angela Bassett and Joan and Sandy Weill back this dance company's gala dinner dance benefit. Proceeds benefit the theater's major programs from new works to scholarships for talented young dancers and innovative outreach programs.
BEHIND THE SCENES: Last year's event at the Sheraton New York attracted 1,300 guests and raised $1.9 million. Avi Adler did the d?cor. Kathleen Hyppolite oversees the company's special events.
THIS YEAR: No date has been set; last year's event was in late November
American Museum of Natural History's Ball
THE SCOOP: Quest editor David Patrick Columbia calls the museum “one of the city's core institutions,” and an old-money crowd has traditionally turned out to support the museum's ball. Tom Brokaw and Harrison Ford have served as chairs for the event, and media heavyweights like AOL Time Warner's Walter Isaacson and Bob Pittman show up, too.
BEHIND THE SCENES: Last year's “Museum Ball Celebrates Pearls” was catered by Restaurant Associates with Bill Tansey doing the d?cor. Guests listened to music from the Mike Carney Orchestra.
THIS YEAR: Look for it in November or December
NYPL's Library Lions Benefit
THE SCOOP: The New York Public Library's biggest fund-raising event draws publishing, literary and society figures to the main library on Fifth Avenue. And you don't get more prominent than last year's honoree, Brooke Astor.
BEHIND THE SCENES: Kathryn Laino, the library's manager of special events, worked with Avi Adler, Glorious Food, George Trescher Associates and Party Rental to host the gala in 2001; in 2000 Robert Isabell used blow-ups of the honorees.
THIS YEAR: No date is set; look for it in November
Read our coverage of last year's event...
Dia Center for the Arts Gala
THE SCOOP: While New York has lots of prominent art-related benefits, this one is actually a big hit with A-list artists, contemporary collectors, dealers and art journalists. (One publicist remembers a reporter's complaint after being invited to a competing art event: “But that's the same night as Dia.") High-profile sponsors including Donna Karan, Calvin Klein and Gucci have upped the event's hip factor and added a notable mix of fashion personalities.
BEHIND THE SCENES: Last year's theme was “City Children Connect, Create and Celebrate.” Theater director and designer Robert Wilson used children's artwork as decor throughout the Dia's space. Glorious Food catered the event.
THIS YEAR: The Dia hosts its gala on November 7
International Hotel/Motel and Restaurant Show
THE SCOOP: It's considered the biggest show in the hospitality industry, where suppliers come to buy and stock for their companies. Coinciding with the show is the Hotel Association of New York City's International Hospitality Ball, where hoteliers mingle during the busy trade show week, as well as the American Hotel & Lodging Association's fall conference.
BEHIND THE SCENES: Managed by George Little Management since 1980, the show has been held at the Javits Center since 1986. Show Stoppers Entertainment and Event Company has produced the Hospitality Ball for two years.
THIS YEAR: The show runs at Javits. November 9 to 12
THE SCOOP: The New York Financial Writers' Association's biggest fund-raiser for more than 50 years, this black-tie dinner and show is a spoof of the financial community that attracts 1,000 guests--from New York's top financial companies (including Charles Schwab, Citigroup, Deutsche Bank, Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley) to the writers who cover them, plus a few industry PR firms.
BEHIND THE SCENES: The show has been held at the Marriott Marquis for the past 15 years. Last year the show went on as planned, despite the state of the financial industry following the September 11 attacks.
THIS YEAR: At the Marriott Marquis once again. November 22
New York City Ballet Opening Night Benefit
THE SCOOP: According to W magazine, this pricey gala (tickets range from $1,000 to $2,000) is “guaranteed to offer opulence, glamour, and eclat.” Couture dresses abound at the exclusive benefit, which has come to rival the more established American Ballet Theater's benefit.
BEHIND THE SCENES: After September 11, last year's gala became a benefit for families directly affected by the World Trade Center attacks.
THIS YEAR: Back at the New York State Theater. November 26
Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade
THE SCOOP: Thanksgiving in New York--heck, across the country--means the Macy's parade, the procession of balloons, floats and entertainment that makes its way down Broadway to the retailer's flagship Herald Square store.
BEHIND THE SCENES: Jean McFaddin served as Macy's event chief and oversaw the parade for 23 years before leaving the company in early 2001. Her replacement, Robin Hall, took over with last year's parade. Hoboken, New Jersey, is home to the Macy's Parade Studio, where floats depart on their way to the parade route. The balloons--including a few new ones every year--are inflated near the American Museum of Natural History on the night before the parade.
THIS YEAR: Thanksgiving Day, November 28
Greater New York Dental Meeting
THE SCOOP: It may be low on glamour, but this meeting brings 35,000 dental health professionals and industry reps to the city--along with their clean teeth and their wallets--and “is bigger than the American Dental Convention,” says a NYC & Company exec. The show features approximately 1,200 exhibits from companies like Oral-B, Proctor & Gamble (Crest toothpaste!) and white teeth advocate Rembrandt to professional supply companies and industry associations.
BEHIND THE SCENES: The New York County Dental Society and the Second District Dental Society co-sponsor the event. THIS YEAR: At the Javits Center. November 29 to December 4
New York Botanical Garden's Winter Wonderland Ball
THE SCOOP: It's not easy to get junior socialites to truck out to the Bronx, but this benefit does it. Co-chairs Brooke de Ocampo, Whitney Fairchild, Nathalie Kaplan and Aerin Lauder Zinterhofer made the trip in 2000, and honorary chairman John Galliano dressed them all in Dior gowns.
BEHIND THE SCENES: Due to the September 11 attacks, last year's ball was cancelled. In the past Antony Todd used thousands of candles in his d?cor for the event, which is held in a tent outside the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory.
THIS YEAR: Jennifer Ozdoba, the Botanical Gardens' director of special events, has not yet confirmed a date; it's usually in December
Heisman Trophy Awards Ceremony and Banquet
THE SCOOP: College football's top individual honor “has a year-long build-up and Oscar-like importance” in the sports world, says one ESPN magazine reporter.
BEHIND THE SCENES: For 66 years the awards have been hosted by (and held at) the Downtown Athletic Club, but damage from the September 11 attacks forced the event to relocate to the Marriott Marquis last year.
THIS YEAR: The 200-guest awards ceremony will return to the Downtown Athletic Club; a black-tie banquet for 2,000 at the Marriott Marquis will follow two days later. December 14 and 16
New Year's Eve in Times Square
THE SCOOP: Is there anyone who doesn't connect New Year's Eve and Times Square? Whether or not you want to be there in person, you've probably watched it on TV--and so have people around the world. The event started in 1904 with a fireworks
show that celebrated The New York Times' new building and the renaming of Longacre Square to Times Square. The ball drop began in 1907.
BEHIND THE SCENES: The Times Square Business Improvement District organizes the big party, and the New York Police Department blocks off Times Square
from 42nd to 47th Streets in preparation for the crowd of 500,000.
THIS YEAR: Plans are under way, and the date and location aren't likely to change. December 31
Events in January and February 2002
Events in March and April 2002
Events in May, June and July 2002
Events in August, September and October 2002