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February 16, 2018: Trump Inaugural Committee Paid Firm of New York Event Planner $26 Million; SyFy Editorial Arm to Live Stream New York, Chicago, and Seattle Comic Cons; Las Vegas and Denver Among N.F.L. Draft Host Finalists for 2019, 2020

1. TRUMP INAUGURAL COMMITTEE PAID FIRM OF NEW YORK EVENT PLANNER $26 MILLION: Tax filings released Thursday showed that the committee that organized Donald Trump’s inauguration events paid the firm of Stephanie Winston Wolkoff—a New York event planner and friend of Melania Trump—$26 million, which was part of more than $90 million the committee spent on festivities. The New York Times: “The 116-page filing indicates that the overwhelming majority of the funds went toward expenses related to the inauguration, with the biggest share—nearly $51 million—split roughly evenly between two companies. One of the companies, WIS Media Partners of Marina del Rey, California, was created by a longtime friend of Mrs. Trump, Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, according to a person familiar with the firm. Records show that the firm was created in December 2016, but otherwise there is very little information available about it. Ms. Winston Wolkoff made her name planning Manhattan society galas and has subsequently been brought on as a senior adviser to the first lady’s official government office. … Ms. Winston Wolkoff personally received $1.62 million for her work, according to one official from the inaugural committee, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the official was not authorized to discuss the details publicly. The official said that Ms. Winston Wolkoff’s firm paid the team used by Mark Burnett, the creator of ‘The Apprentice,’ whose involvement in the inaugural festivities was requested by Mr. Trump. Also reaping payments for event production services was Hargrove, Inc., of Lanham, Md., a company that plans trade shows and other events, which was paid $25 million. David Monn of New York, who also is known for orchestrating society events and planned a state dinner for former President Barack Obama, was paid $3.7 million, and a company called Production Resource Group of New Windsor, N.Y., was paid $2.7 million, according to the tax return.”

2. SYFY EDITORIAL ARM TO LIVE STREAM NEW YORK, CHICAGO, AND SEATTLE COMIC CONS: SyFy Wire, the editorial branch of the SyFy network, has inked a deal with event producer ReedPop to be the live-streaming partner for New York Comic Con, Chicago Comic & Entertainment Expo, and Emerald City Comic Con in Seattle. Variety: "Under the pact, Syfy Wire will host the Live Stages on the main floor at each of the three shows. Correspondents will conduct interviews with celebrities and creators; provide previews of exclusive merchandise and upcoming films and series; and offer an inside look at each confab’s on-the-ground programming, including content from some of the panels at each event. Coverage of the events will be available on and Syfy Wire’s YouTube channel and social-media platforms. The video programming will be free to watch; while it won’t carry traditional ad breaks the live-streamed programming will include some sponsored content. In addition, select coverage will also be featured on Syfy’s television channel. 'We have fans all around the globe that cannot join us in Seattle, Chicago or New York for these three amazing shows,' ReedPOP global head Lance Fensterman said in announcing the deal. He called Syfy Wire 'the premier portal for genre news, editorial and discussion.' Added Matthew Chiavelli, Syfy’s senior VP of digital, 'We’re thrilled to provide [Syfy Wire fans] a front-row seat to so much exclusive content from ReedPOP’s cons, regardless of whether they can attend in person.'"

3. LAS VEGAS AND DENVER AMONG N.F.L. DRAFT HOST FINALISTS FOR 2019, 2020: Las Vegas, Denver, Cleveland/Canton, Kansas City, and Nashville have been selected as the finalists to host the 2019 or 2020 N.F.L. draft. USA Today: “’It’s a competitive process, and we’re excited to move one step closer to bringing the NFL Draft to Denver,'’ Broncos president and chief executive officer Joe Ellis said in a statement. ‘Working alongside VISIT DENVER and the Denver Sports Commission, we’re confident that Denver would be a tremendous host to showcase the draft and the NFL in a great football environment.’ The NFL draft is a three-day event that is generally held in the final weekend of April. NFL commissioner Roger Goodell is scheduled to preside over the first day of the affair. Almost all the players projected as first-round draft picks are invited to attend. Day 1 of the NFL draft, which is limited to first-round selections, has been drawing more than nine million combined viewers on ESPN and the NFL Network. That audience could grow as Fox will start televising the event this year, which will be held April 26-28 at AT&T Stadium, home of the Dallas Cowboys. Because of the competitive nature of the bid process, specific details regarding hosting the event are not known, including which venue the draft would be held. The league is expected to announce the winning bid for its draft event later this year.”


CHICAGO:  The Chicago Flower & Garden Show will take place March 14-18 at Navy Pier. The theme of this year’s show is “Flower Tales—Every Flower Has a Story to Tell.”

Chicago House, an organization that provides housing and support for people living with H.I.V. and AIDS, will host its 32nd annual Spring Brunch and Fashion Show May 6 at Harold Washington Library. 

LAS VEGAS:  The 22nd annual Electric Daisy Carnival will take place May 18-20 at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Headliners include Armin Van Buren, Diplo, and Zedd. 

South Point Hotel, Casino, and Spa has unveiled plans for a $40 million remodel to its guest rooms in the property’s three towers. The 2,163-room remodel will be completed by September 2020. 

LOS ANGELES:  The Los Angeles Travel & Adventure Show will take place February 24-25 at the Los Angeles Convention Center. 

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

MIAMI/SOUTH FLORIDA:  The Breast Cancer Research Foundation’s Palm Beach Hot Pink Luncheon & Symposium drew more than 400 guests to the Breakers resort and raised more than $1 million. Next year’s event will take place February 7.

NEW YORK:  The fifth annual Harlem Haberdashery Masquerade Ball, presented by Crown Royal, will take place March 3 at the Riverside Church. The event benefits Take Care of Harlem, a nonprofit that provides philanthropic programs that fight hunger and advocate for arts education and youth-driven programs.

New York magazine’s annual New York Weddings Event will take place March 21 at 180 Maiden Lane. The event, which highlights the magazine’s semi-annual wedding issue, will showcase more than 100 wedding vendors in a variety of categories. Vendors will include Beautini, Indochino, Zola, Van Leeuwen Artisan Ice Cream, and Kleinfeld Bridal. 

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

SAN FRANCISCO:  Napa Valley vineyard and winery Mayacamas has appointed Cathy Cohn national sales manager. 

TORONTO:  Season six of Electric Island, a summer-long concert and picnic series, will take place at Hanlan’s Point, with events May 20, July 1, August 11, September 2, and September 3. 

WASHINGTON, D.C.:  To commemorate International Women’s Day, Taylor Gourmet will host a women-led hospitality panel on leadership in the food industry March 7 at the hoagie shop’s headquarters. 

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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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