It is often said that necessity is the mother of invention. Just ask Justin Panzer, CEO and founder of Eventuosity. Panzer, a marketing executive who was always on the road launching new products, went from trade show to customer tour to training session with color-coded spreadsheets and binders. “I thought to myself, there has to be a better way to organize all of this,” he says. From group texts to emails and documents, “I always felt I was losing track of something.”

Therein lies the invention. Justin (pictured right) started brainstorming with his brother, Douglas, who had the technological know-how, and his mother, Marcy (pictured left), a former lawyer and bank executive, and the three founded Eventuosity. The Philadelphia-based company provides software for event organizers, or as Justin puts it, “anyone from a hockey mom organizing the team’s out-of-state travels to nonprofits who plan one or two events a year to corporate event planners who plan events daily.”

Eventuosity is loaded with templates, so if you’re a beginner who has never booked a trade show, the template is preloaded with tasks, but it’s also highly flexible. “Many planners know what works for them and like to put their own personality into it, so if you don’t need reminders or you don’t want certain templates, you can use what you need and discard the rest,” explains Justin. Eventuosity also tailors four packages to different users, so for as little as $9 a month, you can have a system that organizes, tracks and even sends push reminders to those involved in the planning process.

As for working with family, the Panzers agree that it’s both a privilege and a strength. “We have shared life experiences,” says Marcy. “Our collective memory often makes for a kind of shorthand or abbreviated communication.” The Panzer family certainly divides and conquers, according to Justin: “We really allow each other to focus on their particular strength.”

In the wake of COVID-19, the Philadelphia Convention and Visitors Bureau (PHLCVB) set out to provide planners with up-to-date intel and sound advice, appointing Dr. David Nash, founding dean emeritus of the Jefferson College of Population Health, in the process as its chief health advisor. Dr. Nash and Kavin Schieferdecker, senior vice president of the CVB’s convention division, share how the partnership came to be and its potential lasting impact.

 

A lifelon New Yorker, Emily Schmalholz was a TV producer at VH1 before moving into the events industry and landing at Westchester’s The Capitol Theatre. As director of special events at the historic space and its bar, Garcia’s, she says creating events and working in television have lots in common. “The ultimate goal for both is to tell a great story and create memorable moments.” Schmalholz, a self-described “event therapist,” had more to say about her work.

What’s the biggest difference between producing for television and producing events?

 

With the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, most people are working from home. Many are social distancing or quarantining with their children, who have transitioned to online classes. Restaurants, bars, coffee shops, offices, stores and so much more have been temporarily shut down in many states, affecting daily life in the most unexpected of ways.