FFEA 27th Annual Convention & Trade Show "Future Forward" FFEA 27th Annual Convention & Trade Show "Future Forward"

Schedule

Monday, August 23, 2021

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Conference Committee Welcome Reception

For our dedicated and hard-working FFEA Committee volunteers! Join your Board of Directors for a celebration in thanks for all that you do for us all year!

Tuesday, August 24, 2021

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Registration Open

Pick up your credentials, additional social tickets and registration packet here.

- EDT
Exhibitor Setup

Exhibitors please check in at the Registration Desk prior to setting up.

- EDT
Peer Discussion Group - Event Operations & Logistics

For those attendees who are currently responsible for Festival Operations, this is your opportunity to discuss current trends and challenges with your peers. Bring along your questions and ideas for the group as well as business cards for post conference networking.

- EDT
Peer Discussion Group - Event Suppliers

For those attendees who are suppliers of products and services to the Event Industry, this is your opportunity to discuss current trends and challenges with your peers. Bring along your questions and ideas for the group as well as business cards for post conference networking.

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Peer Discussion Group - Marketing & Communications

For those attendees who are currently responsible for your organization's Marketing and Social Media, this is your opportunity to discuss current trends and challenges with your peers. Bring along your questions and ideas for the group as well as business cards for post conference networking.

- EDT
Peer Discussion Group - Sponsorship Recruitment & Retention

For those attendees who are currently responsible for Sponsorship, this is your opportunity to discuss current trends and challenges with your peers. Bring along your questions and ideas for the group as well as business cards for post conference networking.

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Peer Discussion Group - Large Scale Events

For those attendees who are currently responsible for large scale events, this is your opportunity to discuss current trends and challenges with your peers. Bring along your questions and ideas for the group as well as business cards for post conference networking.

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Peer Discussion Group - Municipalities

For those attendees who are currently employed at a Municipality, this is your opportunity to discuss current trends and challenges with your peers. Bring along your questions and ideas for the group as well as business cards for post conference networking.

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Peer Discussion Group - Non-Profit Organizations

For those attendees who are currently employed at a Non-Profit Organization this is your opportunity to discuss current trends and challenges with your peers. Bring along your questions and ideas for the group as well as business cards for post conference networking.

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Peer Discussion Group - Small Events

For those attendees who are currently responsible for smaller events, this is your opportunity to discuss current trends and challenges with your peers. Bring along your questions and ideas for the group as well as business cards for post conference networking.

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First Timers' Orientation & Networking

Open to all conference attendees. The First Timer's Networking event will guide you through navigating the conference and will also allow you to engage with other attendees.

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Networker, He Wrote: A Killer Guide To Turning Relationships into Revenue
Jordan Oliveira-Heller
Jordan Oliveira-Heller
SWEL Events, Owner/Event Planner

For some of us, networking is murder. But whether you kill it in social situations or you prefer to operate in the shadows, networking is a must for everyone in the events industry. In this session, you will learn how to leverage relationships into revenue by becoming the best networker you can be. Awkward? So am I. Hate people? Me too. But having solid bonds with as many people as possible will take both your events and your career to the next level. I will be sharing direct lessons learned from many years of networking wins and fails as well as taking audience horror stories to see what we can learn from your own experiences.

- EDT
Opening Reception with Trade Show

Network with colleagues and meet the tradeshow exhibitors during our Conference Opening Reception. Complimentary Beer, Wine, Soda and Water courtesy of select exhibitors. Reception Style Dinner Stations included. 

- EDT
Cocktails & Conversation Hospitality After Hours

Network with fellow attendees in the after hours Hospitality Suite. Complimentary snacks and open bar. Fireworks Disply by Pyrotecnico at 9pm. Live Entertainment Showcases, DJ and Dancing. Event credential required for entry - all attendees welcome.

Wednesday, August 25, 2021

- EDT
Registration Open

Pick up your credentials, additional social tickets and registration packet here.

- EDT
Opening Session - "Future Forward"
Steve Adelman
Steve Adelman
Adelman Law Group & Event Safety Alliance, Vice President

Welcome to FUTURE FORWARD! Opening Session will feature Keynote Speaker, and Industry Expert, Steven Adelman.


RISK IDENTITY: How to Plan Events When We Cannot Even Agree on the Basics

In the old timey days, you planned an event by being a good event planner. Now you have to be a psychologist, a politician, a soothsayer. This session will pose many questions about how we think about ourselves when we enter group activities. We will puzzle out some answers.  Use the rest of the conference to decide what to do with your new awareness.

 

Steven A. Adelman is head of Adelman Law Group, PLLC in Scottsdale, Arizona, and Vice President of the Event Safety Alliance.  His practice focuses on risk and safety at events throughout North America, and he serves as an expert witness in lawsuits arising from live events.  Steve Adelman is principal author of the authoritative Crowd Management standard in the United States, ANSI ES1.9-2020, as well as three rounds of COVID-related reopening guidance for the event industry.  Steve is a law professor, author of the “Adelman on Venues” blog, and he provides health and safety consulting for live events across the United States.   

 

LEARNING OBJECTIVES:

  1. A working definition of "risk" that lets us apply it to post-COVID festivals and events. 
  2. Understand how and why do people calculate risk differently in different circumstances. 
  3. Appreciate that that everything is not relative - but point of view may matter more than ever.

 

- EDT
Exhibitor Session: Tips for Growing your event business

This panel discussion is for our supplier members! Join our panelists for their best advice and tips on preparing and participating in tradeshows, reaching event directors, responding to RFPs and closing the sale to groow your event business. Panelists are all FFEA Suppliers with a proven track record of working with events.

- EDT
A Multicultural Navigator to Creating Culturally Relevant & Inclusive Events
Sami Haiman-Marrero
Sami Haiman-Marrero
Urbander, President & CEO
Xaulanda Simmonds-Emmanuel
Xaulanda Simmonds-Emmanuel
Urbander, Senior Consultant

With the global demographic shifts, arts and festivals as well as virtual and in-person events are becoming more diverse and dynamic.  From people working within these spaces to vendors and the audiences that participate, it is critical that companies, nonprofits, and government agencies understand fundamental marketing and communication strategies needed to navigate multicultural spaces. No longer is it acceptable to make public proclamations of diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) without walking the talk.  With social change in recent years, there is a higher level of accountability to ensure that organizations and professionals not only understand the complexities of the new multicultural landscape but also are able to implement sound strategies to authentically engage their team, suppliers, business partners and community.

- EDT
Pivot Simple: Practical Strategies for Shifting Your Marketing
Sherron Washington
Sherron Washington
The P3 Solution, MarComm Strategist

How is your organization or business remaining nimble throughout this new phase of marketing? Because, marketing tactics that have worked in the past might not be currently viable, your business will need to pivot its marketing to better align with the times. This session will provide simple hacks designed to help you pivot your marketing efforts to effectively assist in aligning your brand and promotion during times of transition.

- EDT
Sponsorship Road Map
Teresa Stas
Teresa Stas
Green Cactus, LLC, Director

How to effectively sell event sponsorships even during a pandemic! In this session author and sponsorship expert Teresa Stas will break down the steps to successfully selling event sponsorships even for virtual and hybrid events.

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Sunsational Awards Luncheon

It's time to celebrate the accomplishments of our members through the SUNsational Awards. Winners will be announced and presented with an award on stage. Lunch provided.

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2021 Event Trends: Using Technology in a Post-Covid World
Cassie Roberts-Dispenza
Cassie Roberts-Dispenza
Saffire, Senior Director of Marketing & Partnerships

2020 was sure a doozy! Do you ever find yourself saying something happened “last year” only to realize what you’re talking about was in 2019? What in the world happened to the last year of our lives? In many ways, while Covid was certainly not great for the event & entertainment industry, it did force innovations in technology & consumer expectations that can help us advance our organizations, even in a post-Covid world. In addition, trends in online marketing and social media continued to evolve even in 2020, while most of us were binging Netflix in our sweatpants. As “quarantined” continues to be used more in to the past tense than present, how ready are you for your events to move back to normal? Do you still have some restrictions on large-scale events where you live & need ideas for how to get a safe & approved event off the ground? If you feel like you’ve been living in your own bubble since 2019 and are missing the boat on what’s been happening in the world, this is the session for you!

- EDT
A Place at the Table: The Importance of Building Equity in Your Organization
Marjorie Waldo
Marjorie Waldo
Arts Garage, President & CEO

This session, A Place at the Table: The Importance of Building Equity in Your Organization, will facilitate the important first discussion of why equity is so essential in every organization, large or small and for or not for profit alike. Creating a safe space to talk about what can be an uncomfortable topic of racial equity, Waldo will lead participants through an important discussion about the opportunities and challenges associated with how building equity in our organizations can make our work more effective, more inclusive and more diverse. From programming to building diverse staff and boards. Waldo will give practical, real life support to organizations committed to serving as allies to members of marginalized communities.

- EDT
Post-Pandemic Playbook - Marketing and Communication Strategies for Reopening Your Events
Jessica Eckley
Jessica Eckley
crackerJack Media, Partner, CEO
Jennifer Renspie
Jennifer Renspie
CrackerJack Media, Partner, COO
Maiken Stefany
Maiken Stefany
EventFest, VP, Events and Development
Jenna Grooms
Jenna Grooms
Event Development Institute, Director

The world has watched as the event industry has slowly begun re-opening in a post-Covid environment and Florida is at the forefront. Having played host to events such as Super Bowl LV and WrestleMania 37, these marketing, public relations and operations leaders are helping successfully write the playbook for navigating community restrictions, proactively communicating with fans, and creating an environment where everyone can celebrate safely. Learn what worked, what didn’t, and how your event can evolve from their experience.

EDT (Day 1 of 2)
Sponsor Partnerships that Last – Perspectives from Both Sides of the Table
JT McWalters
JT McWalters
Orlando Magic, Vice President of Global Partnerships

Join Sponsorship Executives from both sides of the table for a discussion on creating long-lasting partnerships for everyone involved. This panel will feature JT McWalters, VP of Partnership with the Orlando Magic who will give his best practices when recruiting and retaining sponsors. JT will bring along some of his top regional and national brand partners to share what they look for when sponsoring events and how the pandemic has changed their typical perspective and processes.

- EDT
ADA Compliance Online
Kevin McNulty
Kevin McNulty
Netweave Social Networking, President & CEO

Do your social media posts comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act? Do your photos have alternate text describing the image to the visually impaired?  Do your videos have captions for the hearing impaired?  Did you even know you could do those things on social media? Find out how ADA compliance works on social media and how to make sure you are in compliance, as well as evaluate the consequences if you are not. Social media expert Kevin McNulty of NetWeave Social Networking will show you the ADA features of major social media platforms, and how to use them to make your content more accessible and compliant with the law!

- EDT
Building Your Brand - What Works and What Produces Award-Winning and Attendee Loving Results
Ellesor Holder
Ellesor Holder
Gray Marketing & PR, Lead Creative & Strategist

Ready to really set your event apart from the rest? Discover tried and true marketing tactics and actionable tips for getting the most out of your resources, your budget and your partner relationships. You’ll be introduced to brand strategies that get people talking, people engaging and most importantly, people coming to your event or festival even if you have gone virtual. We will cover digital marketing, social media channels and traditional forms of media too.

- EDT
Prune & Bloom: Little Actions to Make Your Work Life Blossom
Alison Baringer
Alison Baringer
North Carolina Azalea Festival, Executive Director

Do you feel each project you try to accomplish uncovers 10 more tasks that need done first? Learn to set aside important time working “on” the business, setting up processes and documents that make future task completion a breeze. Optimizing your project management skills makes moving the needle on your events almost effortless. Easy, actionable tips and tricks we need to hear to make our work lives easier, so we can spend more time helping our events and lives produce the brightest blossoms. 

- EDT
Yes, You Should Provide a Sponsorship Fulfillment Report!
Erin Fortune
Erin Fortune
Music for All, Director of Sponsorships

Do you provide post-event fulfillment reports to your sponsors? If not, what are you waiting for? Sponsorship fulfillment reports can be a key tool for sponsorship renewals, as well as future sales. Whether you are starting from scratch or refining your current fulfillment report process, join this session for tips on creating a winning fulfillment report that your sponsors will be proud to review and renew.

- EDT
Tradeshow Happy Hour & Award Winner Showcase

Visit with our tradeshow exhibitors for Happy Hour. The winners of the SUNsational Awards will also be on display so that you can view the pieces submitted. Appetizers and crudite served. Complimentary beer, wine, soda and water courtesy of our Sponsors. 

- EDT
Cocktails & Conversation Hospitality After Hours

Network with fellow attendees in the after hours Hospitality Lounge. Laser Light Show and Live Entertainment Showcases, DJ and Dancing. Complimentary snacks and full bar are included. Event credential required for entry - all attendees welcome.

Thursday, August 26, 2021

EDT (Day 2 of 2)
Sponsor Partnerships that Last – Perspectives from Both Sides of the Table
JT McWalters
JT McWalters
Orlando Magic, Vice President of Global Partnerships

Join Sponsorship Executives from both sides of the table for a discussion on creating long-lasting partnerships for everyone involved. This panel will feature JT McWalters, VP of Partnership with the Orlando Magic who will give his best practices when recruiting and retaining sponsors. JT will bring along some of his top regional and national brand partners to share what they look for when sponsoring events and how the pandemic has changed their typical perspective and processes.

- EDT
Roundtable Discussion Groups

Our take on speed networking! 15 different discussion groups to choose from. Find a topic of interest and sit at the table with a small group and facilitator. This is your chance to hear about industry trends and discuss challenges with your peers. You will spend 30 minutes in this format before switching to a new table 2 more times.  

- EDT
Developing a Comprehensive Access Plan for Patrons with Disabilities
Laura Grunfeld
Laura Grunfeld
Everyone’s Invited, LLC, Owner & Founder

Like many events, you may be reviewing and revamping your systems in preparation for reopening. This is the time to take a good look at how well you are serving your patrons with disabilities. 

 

Together we will discuss the many ways that you need to accommodate people with various types of disabilities at your outdoor event and we will build the bones of a comprehensive Access Plan. Discover important aspects of an Access Plan that you may not have included in past years.

 

A well-thought-out and executed Access Plan will not only help make your event more accessible for people with disabilities but it will be safer for all, more inclusive, and it will help protect you from litigation.

 

This fast-paced course is helpful for executives, directors, managers, front line employees and volunteers. If everyone has a basic understanding of accessibility, it will be easier to create buy-in for your plan. It is especially important for those that make budgetary decisions to join in so they may learn why it is necessary to invest in the Access Plan.

 

 

Session Objectives

 

  1. Identify unexpected benefits of including patrons with disabilities
  2. Review elements of event accessibility and learn ways of accommodating guests with disabilities
  3. Apply what you learn to your own Access Program
- EDT
Navigating the Future of Sponsorship
Paula Beadle
Paula Beadle
Caravel Marketing & Sponsorship Mastery, CEO & Founder

Future sponsorship success will require bold, new thinking. Paula will share her industry predictions and the need to improve performance, build stronger partnerships, and deliver better results.In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the sponsorship industry will have a dramatic transformation… a transformation that will happen at an accelerated pace. The evolution of sponsorship is a welcome and long over-do change, but preparation will be the key to success.Sponsorship has been progressing over the last several years, and while strides have been taken toward strengthening the relationships between brands and event properties, there is still a lot of work to be done. Paula will reveal the most important factors to sponsors and her insights how to close the gap between sellers and buyers.

- EDT
Opportunity for Change - Now is the time to fix the things that were broken or ignite the well-oiled machine
Keli O'Neill-Wenzel
Keli O'Neill-Wenzel
O'Neill Events & Marketing, President & CEO

Our audiences will have some flexibility coming out of this pandemic because they are excited to attend live events again. Take advantage of the fact that expectations will be relaxed, and provide attendees with unexpected change or excitement. Better yet, change the things you should have fixed internally a few years ago. Go cashless, restructure your volunteer program, lower sponsor tickets, update your site layout ..... the opportunities are endless but so are excuses! This session will give examples of ways you can change your event now while you have the chance.

- EDT
Take a Seat on the Coaching Couch, Please!
Jes Averhart
Jes Averhart
Jes & Co, Founder
Casey Steinbacher
Casey Steinbacher
Finding Next, Founder

As experienced personal, professional and organizational coaches, Casey and Jes will address the anxieties or fears you might have about what the re-imagined event production world might look and feel like for you and your organization. 

This session will be a break from the important and practical "how to" execution content, and instead will provide you the opportunity to voice those nagging thoughts keeping you or your organization from truly excelling post COVID. Casey and Jes invite you to "have a seat on their couch" as we coach you through what's keeping you up at night.

- EDT
Tradeshow Tour & Luncheon

This is your last chance to visit with our tradeshow exhibitors and find the best products and services for your events. Don't forget to complete the scavenger hunt to win big prizes! Winners will be announced through the mobile app. 

- EDT
Exhibitor Teardown

Exhibitor Tear Down needs to be complete by 5:00pm.

- EDT
Event Security, Where Are We Now?
Ray Martinez
Ray Martinez
V2 Global, Senior Consultant

In this session, event safety and security expert Ray Martinez will review trends and policy changes over the past 10 years and discuss the current concerns that event planners need to consdier. He will share the process of developing a plan and its importance as well as strategies for implementing your plan successfully.

Ray speaks from experience as he has previously served as the Chief of Police at the Miami Beach Police, Vice President and now Executive Director of the Miami Super Bowl Host Committee, Chief of Security at ULTRA Music Festival, Adjunct Professor at Florida International University School of Hospitality and Consultant for the College Football Playoffs 2021 National Championship Game. In addition, he was a security contractor at ESPN Worldwide Security and Safety.

- EDT
Going Global: Bulldoze the boundaries of your local production
DeAnna Miller
DeAnna Miller
82 South, Inc., Managing Director
Dominick Corona
Dominick Corona
82 South, Inc., Strategic Marketing Manager

In a socially distant year, this creative agency developed a Santa Claus meet & greet that virtually put thousands of children around the world on Santa’s lap. What have we learned from this? Almost every local production can benefit from a virtual aspect to bring more attention and attendance. We’re here to brainstorm and share tips and tricks that will help take your event from local to global!

- EDT
Greening Events
Resham Shirsat
Resham Shirsat
City of Orlando, Sustainability Project Coordinator

Attention event planners! As events slowly return, let us help you plan an event that is not only safe, but also environmentally friendly and socially responsible. The City of Orlando has recently published a Green Works Guide to Events. This guide aims to help event planners and vendors reduce negative environmental impacts at your next event. Join us for this breakout session that will walk you through the guide and help green your event so we can all do our part in protecting our quality of life.

- EDT
Reaching all Corners of your Community
Terry Olson
Terry Olson
FusionFest, Chief Instigator

How do you reach the people you don't know that are part of your community - the people that aren't like the demographic you are used to? Do you want a multi-cultural audience? How do you approach things differently to include minorities. Let's talk about it.

- EDT
Entertaining the Masses – Booking & Buying Entertainment for Events
Todd Zimmerman
Todd Zimmerman
Odd-o-Ts' Entertainment, Big Guy
Teneese K. Williams
Teneese K. Williams
City of Jacksonville, Event Logistics Manager

The pandemic has certainly changed how we do business and booking entertainment for events is no exception. In this panel discussion, industry leaders will share updates and trends on booking live entertainment as well as tips for getting the most out of your acts. This experienced group has booked entertainment for events of all sizes both pre-pandemic and in the last six months and will cover everything from negotiating to contracting, booking yourself or using an agency.

- EDT
Insurance for Festivals- All you need to know from Festival Policies to Vendor Contracts
Andrew Vandepopulier
Andrew Vandepopulier
Haas & Wilkerson Insurance, Producer

This will be a comprehensive class hitting the high points for all things festival insurance. We will cover what policies you as a festival need all the way to the best way to build a risk management plan. Bring your Vendor Contracts, Facility Contracts and Current Policies and this will allow you to follow along through my class to update and potentially correct issues that are leaving you vulnerable.

- EDT
Let's Talk About Privilege
Jim Barnes
Jim Barnes
Village of Wellington, Village Manager

Community Events serve as an important voice for social equity and inclusion.  We must put equity at the center of all we do. True to the very philosophy of community events is the idea that all people — no matter the color of their skin, age, income level or ability — have access to and are welcomed into programs, facilities, places and spaces that make their lives and communities great.  How do we as event professionals help our communities become more equitable and just? It's easy to say “don’t discriminate,” but how do we truly confront discrimination if we do not talk about its flip side, privilege. One side of discrimination is that someone is suffering from an unearned disadvantage. The flip side is privilege, when someone is benefitting from an unearned advantage. These are difficult conversations that can make people uncomfortable, uneasy, defensive, or elicit feelings of guilt. This session examines our role in such conversations and how we can guide such conversations in constructive ways. Get strategies for avoiding pitfalls and observe activities that can help people understand their own and others’ lived experiences.

- EDT
Futuristic "Starry Party" - Networking Social & Dinner

Join is for a "Starry Party" that's out of this world as Future Forward into an exciting world of events! . Network with your peers, dance to our live bands during the Entertainment Showcases. Dress Code - space, futuristic or LED - your imagination is the “final frontier". Dinner included. 

- EDT
Cocktails & Conversation Hospitality After Hours

Network with fellow attendees in the after hours Hospitality Lounge. Fireworks Display by Zambelli. Live entertainment showcase, DJ & Dancing. Complimentary snacks and full bar are included. Event credential required for entry - all attendees welcome.

Friday, August 27, 2021

- EDT
SUNSational Awards Entry Pickup

Entries may be picked up by the submitting agency between 8:30am - 10:30am on Friday, August 27th at the Registration Desk.

- EDT