BizBash New York 2010: “You’re Only As Good As Your Last Event”

Specialty Violinist Irene Fong performs classic and contemporary favorites at BizBash 2010

The meeting and event planning industry A-listers from the New York metropolitan area took over the Jacob Javitz Center in Manhatten yesterday for the 10th anniversary of the BizBash Expo.  As a 2nd year veteran, I’m delighted to report that once again BizBash delivered a solid line-up of educational seminars, keynote speakers, special presentations and the latest trends from some of the top vendors on the east coast.

The first highlight of the day came from the Expo’s opening entertainment act from BongarBiz.  The retro-flavored percussive performers called The Street Beat, featured drummers and break dancers  in an exciting, rhythmic celebration of energy, sound and movement.  This would be an excellent “dinner & a show” performance option for your holiday gala or special event this season if you are looking to bring in something fun and unique to the planning committee.

From an educational and insight standpoint, you can now call me a fan of Jennifer Gilbert.  She gave the keynote presentation for the morning session and definitely struck a few chords with the audience.   Jennifer is the founder of Save The Date, an exclusive event planning firm whose impressive clientele includes the Bill Gates Foundation, Oprah Winfrey and NewsCorp.

Marcello Pedalino with Keynote Jennifer Gilbert and BizBash Media President, Richard Aaron -Photo Credit: Scott A. O'Grady

In a very cool, Inside The Actors Studio-esque interview on the main stage with BizBash Media President, Richard Aaron, Gilbert gave the attendees a sneak peak into her work ethic, personal philosophy and entrepreneurial spirit.  A few of her quotable quotes included; “I can have it all, I just can’t do it all myself” when speaking about the importance of delegation, -and with regards to what I consider to be the gospel of anti-complacency… “You’re only as good as your last event.”   Love it!

I think my favorite part was when she mentioned how she wouldn’t hesitate to bend down and scrape the gum up off the floor at an event if she’s the first one from her team to notice it.  That’s called keeping it real.  For someone whose been featured on The Real  Housewives of New York, this anti-diva attitude was pretty refreshing.

Bizbash NY's Founder and CEO, David Adler welcomes the capacity crowd at the morning session.

Jennifer also reminded the packed auditorium about being patient and looking at the big picture if you want to be successful and have longevity in the event planning business…   “Today’s 20 person dinner is tomorrow’s 3000 person meeting.”

When I look back on how my company secured its signature level clientele like Allen & Company and Samsung Electronics, her assessment served as an invaluable reminder to consistently give it your all… because you never know who’s watching you work.

The Champagne Creative Group from Las Vegas shows how you can really give your guests a Grand Entrance

Another reaffirmation nugget came from renowned chef, Thomas Preti, during a catering trends forecast symposium later in the afternoon.  Preti, who did his apprenticeship at the famous  Fountainbleau Hotel in Miami and then had a stellar career as Exectuive Sous Chef at the prestigious Plaza Hotel in New York, co-founded his own catering company; Events to Savor.   In addition to sharing a few entertaining stories about personalizing menus with signature drinks, immaculate attention to detail and creating a connection source for the guests throughout an event; Preti had lots of attendees nodding their  heads in agreement when he said… “It’s very important for a guest to be a part of the party, not just at the party.” This is something that I stress to all of my clients during the design session.

I spent the next 2 hours networking on the on the exhibit floor.  There was a brand new crop of innovative and distinctive vendors that I’ll be pursuing strategic partnerships with in the near future so that the Celebrate Life team here at MMP can continue to bring our clients the best that the special events and mobile entertainment industry has to offer.

The following companies and representatives were either offering exceptional products, locations, customer service or noteworthy ideas that were causing mini traffic jams in the aisles;

Karina Granin from City Blossoms European Floral Boutique, Liz Lehman and Mark Leighton from Cafe Metro, Allison Duval, Angela Ortiz and Julie Miller from The Foundry, Alex from Screaming Queens, Rolando Espinoza from Champagne Creative Group, Shelly Diamond from BML Blackbird, Marc Weiss aka DJ Chef, Richard Fertig from Brilliant, Laurie Stolowitz and Matthew David Hopkins from 360 Design Events ltd., Amanda Villarosa amd Landa Kinder from  Gruber Photographers, Randall Richardson from Abigail Kirsch and Tina Volz-Bongar from Bongarbiz Surprise Industries.

360 Design Events

Cafe Metro


City Blossoms

Screaming Queens

The Street Beat

Abigail Kirsch


DJ Chef

Gruber Photography

Keynote Interview

Tabletop Finalist

The Foundry


Table Top

Tabletop Finalist

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6 Responses to “BizBash New York 2010: “You’re Only As Good As Your Last Event””
  1. Marcello,

    Thank you very much for the photo and mention! It was nice meeting you as well. Please keep City Blossoms in mind for any of your future floral needs.

    We would love to work with you on some of your events!



  2. Marcello,

    Thank you kindly for including Brilliant in your write up!

    Bringing new innovative ideas to your readership is what will keep you ahead of the curve.

    Thanks again and please let me know how we may be of assistance in the future.

    Best personal regards,

    Richard Fertig, President
    Brilliant Transportation Ltd.

  3. Joe Evaristo says:

    Hi Marcello,

    It was nice meeting you as well.

    Great recap–this was my first time at such an event, and it was very interesting.


  4. Hello Marcello:

    How nice! Thanks so much for the pic and mention.

    Yes, we look forward to finding projects to work together on.
    I hope that the show turns out to be productive for you: good luck!

    All the best,

  5. AWWWWW….I’m a fan of yours too Marcello. I had a blast and hope it was REAL, as you say. Thanks for the shout out… Continued Success, Jennifer

  6. My pleasure everyone!

    Thanks for visiting.

    What a great day it was… I’m still getting e-mails from people I met who also had a stellar experience.

    Best wishes,


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