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September 26, 2017: Tales of the Cocktail Founder Steps Down, Rule Prohibits U.S. Athlete Protests at Winter Olympics, Girlboss Rally Expands to New York


1. TALES OF THE COCKTAIL FOUNDER STEPS DOWN: Amy Tuennerman, the founder of Tales of the Cocktail, an annual New Orleans convention for the drinks business, has announced she'll be stepping down. The resignation comes months after she participated in a controversial costume ride during Mardi Gras. The New York Times: "'Our goal has always been to create something lasting that can benefit the industry and the people of New Orleans well beyond our years. This allows that to continue,' said Ann R. Tuennerman in her resignation statement. Ms. Tuennerman founded Tales 15 years ago, later running it with her husband, Paul, and the event has grown from a tiny gathering of cocktail aficionados to a massive international enterprise with corporate liquor sponsorships. Both of them resigned over the weekend. A string of events led to the resignations. It began in March, when the Tuennermans, who are white, were denounced after posting a Facebook Live video of Ms. Tuennerman wearing blackface for the Zulu Mardi Gras parade, with a caption that included what was intended as a joking reference to blackface. The Zulu Social Aid and Pleasure Club is one of the oldest African-American social clubs in New Orleans, and during the annual Carnival parade, many of its members and float riders, both black and white, wear blackface, wigs and grass skirts. The Facebook post traveled far beyond New Orleans at a time when the cocktail community was already grappling with issues of diversity and sexism within the industry. Mr. Tuennerman left his position as chief business officer, and a diversity council was formed, made up of minority and female members from the bar world." http://nyti.ms/2htUjwI

2. RULE PROHIBITS U.S. ATHLETE PROTESTS AT WINTER OLYMPICS: U.S. athletes who want to protest President Trump at next year’s Winter Olympics may have trouble because of Olympic regulations. Los Angeles Times: “Rule 50 of the Olympic Charter states: ‘No kind of demonstration or political, religious or racial propaganda is permitted in any Olympic sites, venues or other areas.’ U.S. Olympic Committee leaders — gathered in Park City, Utah, for a media summit — said Monday they don’t expect American athletes to violate the rule in Pyeongchang, South Korea, but also insisted that they support what has been happening across the U.S. ‘I think the athletes you see protesting are protesting because they love their country, not because they don’t,’ said Scott Blackmun, the committee’s chief executive. The issue has gained momentum since Trump — speaking at a rally in Alabama — challenged NFL owners to fire any player who takes a knee during the playing of the national anthem. The players maintain the demonstrations protest racial inequality; Trump says they disrespect the flag and the country.” http://lat.ms/2wSn2xa

3. GIRLBOSS RALLY EXPANDS TO NEW YORK: The Girlboss Rally conference, a women’s empowerment and entrepreneur advice event from Sophia Amoruso’s Girlboss Media, will have its first East Coast edition in Brooklyn on November 11. Women’s Wear Daily: “The New York speaker roster so far includes Amoruso, GE vice chair Beth Comstock, Revlon chief creative officer Linda Wells, Teen Vogue editor in chief Elaine Welteroth and Bumble founder and chief executive Whitney Wolfe. The inaugural Girlboss Rally debuted in downtown Los Angeles in the spring, drawing some 500 people for keynotes, panels and fireside chats from a range of company founders and chief executives from the worlds of fashion, retail, finance and media. … Girlboss Media is the brainchild of Amoruso, who nabbed $1.2 million in seed funding earlier this year. The funding came with the announcement the company hired a number of executives, including Goop chief revenue officer Alison Wyatt to be president and chief revenue officer, along with former Refinery 29 senior vice president of innovation and content strategy Neha Gandhi to be chief operating officer and editor in chief. Amoruso, the founder and former chief executive of e-tailer Nasty Gal, told WWD at the time of the Los Angeles conference she aimed to use Girlboss Media as a vehicle to redefine success.” http://bit.ly/2xGApom

* LOCAL NEWS *

COAST TO COAST:  Prunotto Winery and Urbani Truffles will host the second annual White Truffle Festival November 3-12. The event—which involves participating restaurants serving specialty dishes with white truffles paired with Prunotto wines—is expanding to include restaurants in New York, Miami, Chicago, San Francisco, Houston, Las Vegas, and Portland. 

LAS VEGAS:  N.H.L. team the Vegas Golden Nights has partnered with D Las Vegas to host an inaugural fan fest October 3 at the 3rd Street Stage. The event will give fans the opportunity to interact with players, and will unveil the team mascot to the public for the first time. 

LOS ANGELES:  Hosted by James Corden, the 21st annual Hollywood Film Awards will take place November 5 at the Beverly Hilton.

For information on upcoming events in Los Angeles, visit Masterplanner: http://www.masterplanneronline.com/losangeles

MIAMI/SOUTH FLORIDA:  Prevailing over Hurricane Irma, the Florida Keys will reopen to visitors on October 1. Not all properties are fully operational, but Key West International Airport has resumed service, the Port of Key West is again welcoming cruise ships, and roads and bridges have been restored.  Some events have been rescheduled, but the following functions will take place as planned: Key Largo’s Humphrey Bogart Film Festival, October 18-22; Marathon’s Stone Crab Eating Contest, October 21; and Key West’s Fantasy Fest, October 20-29.

NEW YORK:  The Big Chocolate Show will take place October 6-8 at the Terminal Stores. The event will have appearances by international chocolatiers, artisans, and chefs, plus live demonstrations, book signings, and tasting classes. 

The 14th edition of the New York Latino Film Festival will take place October 11-15 at Cinepolis Chelsea and Julia De Burgos Performance and Arts Center. 

The Madison Square Garden Company has promoted Josephine Vaccarello to senior vice president of MSG Live. Vaccarello previously served as vice president of MSG Live, which focuses on concerts, family entertainment, and ticketing. 

Moxy Times Square has officially opened. The design-driven hotel has 612 guest rooms and 22,000 square feet of flexible event space. 

For information on upcoming events in New York, visit Masterplanner: http://www.masterplanneronline.com/newyork

TORONTO:  The 12th edition of Nuit Blanche—a citywide celebration of contemporary art—will take place September 30-October 1. 

WASHINGTON, D.C.:   The Loews Madison Hotel has joined Hilton Hotels & Resorts’ portfolio as the Madison Washington D.C., a Hilton Hotel. The 356-room property features more than 12,000 square feet of meeting space and is close to the White House and the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. Named after James and Dolley Madison, the Loews Madison has hosted Frank Sinatra, the Dalai Lama, and nearly every U.S. President since John F. Kennedy, who attended the hotel’s commencement ceremony.

Smithsonian’s Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery will celebrate its reopening October 14-15 with the IlluminAsia Festival. Events will include a performance by Silkroad Ensemble and an outdoor Asian food market.  



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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.

BizBash Daily is the must-read digest of event industry news from BizBash.com.

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