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April 29, 2016: Etihad is Fashion Week's First Airline Sponsor, Dating Startup Lets Users Organize Events, Ticketfly Takes Over Two Major New York Venues

1. ETIHAD IS FASHION WEEK'S FIRST AIRLINE SPONSOR: Fashion week organizer WME/IMG has announced that Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, will sponsor global fashion week events in a multi-year deal. This is the first time an airline has sponsored fashion week events; the first will be a summer 2016 Oscar de la Renta show in Sydney, Australia, on May 20. Fashionista: "IMG announced on Wednesday that the American brand will close the upcoming Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia, marking the first time Oscar de la Renta has presented a runway show in the country. In addition to the fashion events Down Under, the airline will sponsor WME/IMG men's and women's fashion week events in New York, London, Milan, Berlin and Mumbai in 2016 and expand to a total of 17 events in 2017. Etihad's network of smaller airline companies—Alitalia, Jet Airways, Air Berlin, Air Serbia, Air Seychelles, Nikiand Etihad Regional—will also participate."

2. DATING STARTUP LETS USERS ORGANIZE EVENTS: The high-end New York- and San Francisco-based dating startup The League—which was founded by Amanda Bradford and screens prospective users before they can join—has launched an updated version that will now cater to the Los Angeles market, as well as allow users to create events. TechCrunch: "The screening process is still part of the app, but what’s new is a focus on events. Members will now be able to create interest groups with group chat and also organize events—for example, Bradford suggested they could create running groups or a 'women’s wine circle.' She added that while The League has organized events of its own, they weren’t really integrated into the app experience. Plus, they’re much more scalable now that the members can do the organizing. Not that the new emphasis is supposed to eliminate dating or romance. It just means those connections can form around interests rather than at a giant bar meetup or on an 'awkward coffee date.' The overall goal, Bradford said, is to turn The League into a 'members-only club,' albeit one with 'a killer singles scene.'"

3. TICKETFLY TAKES OVER TWO MAJOR NEW YORK VENUES: Ticketfly has scored a deal to become the exclusive ticket provider for Mercury Lounge and Bowery Ballroom, two popular New York venues for live events that were previously Ticketmaster clients. The New York Times: "The deal is partly of symbolic importance for Ticketfly. The Bowery Ballroom — which Rolling Stone has called the best club in the country — has an estimated annual attendance of only about 130,000, and the Mercury Lounge just 80,000, according to a marketing document from the Bowery Presents, a promoter that is affiliated with the clubs but does not own them. The deal also extends the reach of Ticketfly in New York. Among the other venues it works with in the city are Central Park SummerStage, Forest Hills Stadium, Brooklyn Bowl, Output and Birdland. The Bowery Ballroom and Mercury Lounge agreement comes as the Bowery Presents is in talks to be acquired by the giant concert company AEG Live, but the Ticketfly deal is not expected to affect that transaction."


ATLANTA:  Atlanta-based On Event Services has appointed Travis Salsig as director of new business development. Salsig will work in the Onstage division in the company's Denver, Colorado, office. 

BOSTON:  Met Restaurant Group's 11th annual Soft Shell Crab Festival will take place May 2-June 1 at Met Back Bay.

CHICAGO:  The 15th annual Driehaus Awards for Fashion Excellence take place tonight at Chicago Vintage Motor Carriage.

LAS VEGAS:  Luxury Suisse and World Watch Market, a new luxury products trade show with a public component, will make its debut at the Trump International Hotel in Las Vegas on June 4-5. Organized by Bowen, Bragg & Mandell, it’s being billed as a first-of-its-kind trade and public event.

LOS ANGELES:  The Los Angeles County Museum of Art announced that Elaine Wynn, co-chair of the board, pledged $50 million to kick off the next phase for the Peter Zumthor-designed permanent collection building.

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

NEW YORK:  The fifth annual Montclair Film Festival runs tonight through May 8 at various venues in Montclair, New Jersey. Events include conversation series with Stephen Colbert, Margo Martindale, and Patrick Wilson at Montclair Kimberley Academy.

The Municipal Forum of New York will host its 27th annual awards and Urban Leadership Fellows Dinner on May 11 at New York Marriott Marquis.

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

ORLANDO/CENTRAL FLORIDA:  On May 7, Highball & Harvest at the Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Grande Lakes, will host a class on barbecuing and brewing, followed by a dinner on the venue's lawn.

PHOENIX:  AEG Facilities will manage Glendale's 18,300-seat Gila River Arena.

SAN FRANCISCO:  The Renegade Craft Fair will take place July 16-17 at Fort Mason Center.

TORONTO:  The inaugural folk music-focused Little York Festival is slated for Sunday at Tranzac Club.

WASHINGTON, D.C.:  As part of Cinco de Mayo celebrations at the Wharf, the Running of the Chihuahuas will take place on Sunday at the Southwest Waterfront. Proceeds from the event will benefit Rural Dog Rescue.

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

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