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September 12, 2016: How Brands Like Rebecca Minkoff Are Integrating Tech Into Fashion Shows, Why Eurosports Is Better at Airing Live Sporting Events Than NBC, Madison Square Garden Lays Off Dozens of Employees

1. HOW BRANDS LIKE REBECCA MINKOFF ARE INTEGRATING TECH INTO FASHION SHOWS: More brands than ever before are incorporating tech into their fashion shows, including Rebecca Minkoff. The designer’s New York Fashion Week fall preview show, which took place Saturday, incorporated augmented reality into the event for those unable to attend. TechCrunch: “About 350 fashion-forward individuals will get an up-close look at the new line in person, but those not able to snag a ticket can feel like they are right there with a 360 live experience provided at the show. And, something even more telling of where the fashion industry is headed—they’ll also be able to see how Minkoff’s newest line looks on their own body using an app called Zeekit. Minkoff and her brother/co-founder Uri Minkoff partnered with the startup to help real women connect with the brand. It works by uploading a photo of yourself and then picking out clothing items from the show. Zeekit will then overlay those items on your body using the size you choose. … But Rebecca Minkoff’s show isn’t the only one integrating tech. Thanks to fashion bloggers and the rise of social media, items once kept close for months at a time by designers and fashion editors are readily available to see—and buy. More brands like Minkoff and Hilfiger are now selling items seen on the runway that day, and other lines like Noon by Noor, Band of Outsiders, Prabal Gurung and others have also hopped on the VR bandwagon to introduce the latest to armchair fashion fans, as well. Integration of VR and augmented reality apps like Zeekit enable real women to see themselves in the clothing, not just runway models, and Uri believes the app could help boost buyer confidence in his brand. It’s a way to make his line accessible to every woman, not just a five-foot-ten-inch, bone-thin model.”

2. WHY EUROSPORTS IS BETTER AT AIRING LIVE SPORTING EVENTS THAN NBC: NBC’s strategy of broadcasting the Rio Olympics via curated highlights and digital live streams didn’t provide the network with stellar ratings—but the company could learn something from Eurosport’s coverage of international sporting events. Adweek: “Eurosport, now owned by Discovery Communications—it first invested in the network in 2012 and bought it outright in 2015—has landed exclusive Olympics rights in Europe, beginning with the 2018 Winter Games and stretching to 2024. But the company, whose three networks reach 93 countries in Europe, Asia and Australia, already airs several major international events. NBC's prime-time Rio coverage averaged a 14.5 household rating, down 17 percent from 2012's 17.5 rating, which was around the number NBCUniversal guaranteed advertisers for the 2016 Games. But as NBCUniversal tries to reverse those ratings declines, Eurosport CEO Peter Hutton says the company needs to stop airing Olympics events on a tape delay. ’In an environment with social media, to believe that you can hold back the story is not achievable,’ said Hutton, who spoke with reporters Thursday in New York. ‘You can't really judge other people's markets but I think for us, the expectation is always going to be that every event will be live.’ And while NBC did offer that option for the most part, at least digitally (though the opening and closing ceremonies were broadcast and streamed on a delay, frustrating viewers), Eurosport takes a more aggressive approach to encouraging its viewers to watch sports live, no matter the hour, day or night. Because the U.S. Open's night games take place in the middle of the night in Europe, Eurosport's marketing efforts are centered around getting viewers to wake up very early (or stay up late) to watch those matches. The promos position the event as a huge New York celebration, informing audiences that if they want to "make it in New York,’ they'll need to ‘party all night long’—i.e., stay up and watch the Open. … Eurosport has gone a step further than airing promos, enlisting European tennis stars like Angelique Kerber, who will play in the women's singles final on Saturday, and Andy Murray to record "wake-up calls," which audiences could register for on their Eurosport Player.”

3. MADISON SQUARE GARDEN LAYS OFF DOZENS OF EMPLOYEES: Madison Square Garden laid off dozens of employees in July and August because of a drop in revenue. According to sources, the venue, which recently hosted the V.M.A.s, has replaced them with new employees who have different skill sets. New York Post: “Between 60 and 70 people were let go in July and a handful of others departed in August, sources told The Post. MSG reported a difficult three months ended June 30—its fiscal fourth quarter—as it reoriented its business. The company under Chief Executive David O’Connor announced a $6.9 million charge on its last quarterly earnings. The firm recorded $217.8 million in revenues and an operating loss of $46.2 million in the quarter. The James Dolan-controlled business, which split from its MSG network sibling at the end of September 2015, is aiming to brand itself as a stand alone sports and live entertainment company. In August, the firm acquired a 12 percent stake in Town Square Media, which owns festivals and radio stations and a controlling interest in Boston Calling Events, a music festival. The New York entertainment company is also expected to open new venues, perhaps expanding into Las Vegas. MSG has made a push into digital businesses including the new media sports sector, and it acquired a stake in daily fantasy sports destination DraftKings.”


COAST TO COAST:  Marriott Hotels has partnered with nonprofit TED to bring creatively curated TED Talks, blogs, and original quotes to hotel guests worldwide.

ATLANTA:  The Atlanta Pride Festival will take place October 8-9 at Piedmont Park. The L.G.B.T. celebration will include cultural exhibits, the Pride parade, and a marketplace with more than 200 vendor booths.

AUSTIN:  The Formula 1 United States Grand Prix will take place October 21-23 at Circuit of the Americas. The racing event will feature performances by Taylor Swift and the Weeknd.

BOSTON:  The Berklee Beantown Jazz Festival will take place September 24 along Columbus Avenue.

CHICAGO:  Fortune Fish & Gourmet's annual Chicago Seafood and Specialty Food Show will take place September 27 at Navy Pier's Grand Ballroom. More than 200 companies will showcase products at the event.

LOS ANGELES:  The 2016 Screamfest Horror Film Festival—which takes place October 18-27 at the TCL Chinese 6 Theatres—has announced that its slate of movies will include Master Cleanse, Trash Fire, and My Father Die.

Vegan Oktoberfest will take place October 15 at L.A. Center Studios.

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

MIAMI/SOUTH FLORIDA:  The fourth annual South Beach Seafood Week will take place October 19-22, with its main event, South Beach Seafood Festival, to be held on October 22. Participating restaurants during S.B.S.W. include Joe's Stone Crabs; Naked Taco; Red, the Steakhouse; CJ's Crab Shack; and Drunken Dragon.

NEW YORK:  Cycle for Survival, a movement focused on beating rare cancers, will hold its fourth annual Times Square Takeover on September 30. The all-day event will be sponsored by Smartwater and feature more than 100 stationary bikes in Times Square between West 46th and 47th streets.

The fourth annual Event Planner Expo will take place October 5 at the Metropolitan Pavilion. The event will feature more than 140 booths from New York area venues and services, and speakers including Randi Zuckerberg, former director of marketing at Facebook, and Lauren Kay, the senior style editor of the Knot.

The Glow: A Jack O'Lantern Experience—an art installation consisting of a trail illuminated by more than 5,000 hand-carved jack o'lanterns—returns to Monmouth Park Racetrack in Oceanport, New Jersey, on October 7. Presented by Townsquare Live Events, the experience will be available for viewing on weekends throughout October.

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

ORLANDO/CENTRAL FLORIDA:  Plans are in the works to add new attractions to I-Drive 360, including a zip line, a tower thrill ride, a rope obstacle course, and an indoor flight simulator. Orlando Business Journal:

PHILADELPHIA:  Clean Air Council's 11th Annual Greenfest Philly, presented by Toyota Hybrids, took place at Headhouse Square on Sunday. The environmental festival had more than 100 exhibitors, live music, test drives for hybrid vehicles, and athletic activities.

SALT LAKE CITY:  The Ascend Hotel Collection from Choice Hotels International has added the Peery Hotel to its portfolio. The 73-room property, which recently underwent renovations, has two new independent specialty restaurants: the Oak Wood Fire Kitchen and Aristo's, which is scheduled to open this fall.

SAN FRANCISCO:  Citywide literary festival Litquake will take place October 6-15 at various venues.

TORONTO:  The sixth annual Toronto Garlic Festival will take place Sunday at Artscape Wychwood Barns. The event will offer garlic-inspired dishes paired with craft beer or wine, as well as demos and film screenings.

WASHINGTON, D.C.:  MGM National Harbor—a Maryland resort that is set to open in the fourth quarter of 2016—has signed an exclusive deal with Live Nation for ticketing and booking for the Theater at MGM National Harbor, a venue that can accommodate 3,000 for reserved seating or 4,000 for general admission. The 24-story, 308-room resort will include a 125,000-square-foot casino, high-end retail stores, a spa and salon, 27,000 square feet of meeting space, and several restaurants including eateries from celebrity chefs Marcus Samuelsson, Jose Andrés, and Top Chef alumni brothers Michael and Bryan Voltaggio.

Aperto, an Italian restaurant from chef Luigi Diotauti, has opened in Foggy Bottom. 

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With contributions from Jenny Berg in Chicago, Alesandra Dubin and Claire Hoffman in Los Angeles, Mitra Sorrells in Orlando, and Carla Hay, Beth Kormanik, Michele Laufik, Jill Menze, and Ian Zelaya in New York.

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