October At Fairplex Never Looked So…

…Busy!
Happy FIRST Day of October, everyone! icon smile October At Fairplex Never Looked So...

Hello October October At Fairplex Never Looked So...

The LA County Fair may be over, but that doesn’t mean the fun is gone! On the contrary, we’re just getting the party started here at Fairplex.

Here are a few of our most diverse events happening at our grounds this month:

OffRoad Expo October At Fairplex Never Looked So...Lucas Oil Off-Road Expo (Oct. 3-4): The Off-Road Expo gathers the greatest collection of off-road companies, parts, equipment, gear and experts ever assembled in America. From off-road racing to rock-crawling, trail riding to sand sports, to motorcycles and ATV’s, to camping and adventure travel ─ you will find the most knowledgeable people in the industry all in one place. More info here: www.offroadexpo.com.

SoCal College Fair October At Fairplex Never Looked So...SoCal College Fair (Oct. 7): Our Fall college fair is coming up next weekweekend. We have everything from ACT/SAT prep to college application essays, plus hundreds of universities and technical schools will be on-site to answer questions. The Fair will be open from 9 a.m. until 12 p.m. for student field trips and from 5-8 p.m. for families and the community to come together. Everyone is welcome to visit: www.socalcollegefair.com.

Quilt Craft Sewing Festival October At Fairplex Never Looked So...Quilt, Craft & Sewing Festival (Oct. 8-10): At the Quilt, Craft & Sewing Festival you will find a wide variety of sewing, quilting, needle-art and craft supply exhibits from top-quality companies. Join us for FREE seminars, workshops and daily door prize drawings. Visit Thursday – Saturday. Admission is $10 and is good for all three days or free with an online coupon. More info here: www.quiltcraftsew.com.

Red Bull Straight Rhythm October At Fairplex Never Looked So...Red Bull Straight Rhythm (Oct. 10): Over 20 motocross riders go head-to-head in this innovative evolution of Supercross. The track is essentially “unwound”: No turns, just a half-mile straight rhythm track. Extreme sports lovers will want to check out this event, happening Saturday, October 10. For more information visit www.redbull.com.

Toms Warehouse Sale October At Fairplex Never Looked So...TOMS Warehouse Sale (Oct. 8-11): If you love shopping and great deals, you have to join us at Fairplex for the TOMS Warehouse Sale. For 4 days only, you’ll get up to 60% off TOMS eyewear, handbags, and shoes for men, women, youth and toddlers. For each product you purchase, TOMS will help a person in need. This one-of-a-kind event is all about one-for-one, so help others by doing some shopping! For more information about this event visit: www.tomswarehousesale.com.

3967 1Oktoberfest October At Fairplex Never Looked So...Oktoberfest (Oct. 9-10, 16-17 & 23-24): The annual Oktoberfest celebrations begin October 9! As usual, you can expect giant steins of craft beers, authentic German food, Oom Pa Pa music, games and prizes, Chicken Dances, tribute bands (DSB, Led Zepagain and Queen Nation) and gallons upon gallons of beer. For tickets and more info visit: www.OktoberfestAtFairplex.com.

Color Run October At Fairplex Never Looked So...Color Run (Oct. 24): If you enjoy running and having a good time, then you cannot miss the Color Run at Fairplex. Help us promote healthiness and happiness by participating in the most colorful and “Happiest 5k on the Planet.” Grab your tutus, your friends and your running shoes and we’ll see you at the start line beginning at 9 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 24. For more information visit: www.thecolorrun.com/pomona.

For a full list of events at Fairplex, visit our Calendar of Events page. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube to keep up-to-date with the latest event news, behind-the-scenes footage and giveaways!

Which events are you planning to come to? 

3 Ways to Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day

St. Patrick’s Day originally celebrated the arrival of Christianity to Ireland but has since become a cultural phenomenon celebrating all things green.

If your St. Patty’s Day signifies drinks, feasts and donning your favorite green clothing item, this post is for you.

3 Ways to Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day

1. For the 21+ crowd:

While LAist suggests barhopping with the best of them on this glorious Sunday, we prefer creativity and an escape from the crowds.If you have the time and desire, create a special St. Patrick’s Day celebration of your own!

Let’s talk libations:

the irish kiss 3 Ways to Celebrate St. Patricks Day Greet your guests with an Irish Kiss cocktail served up in a dainty champagne flute.

Recipe:

4 oz. Korbel Champagne
1 oz. melon liqueur

Add two drops of green dye to 1/2 cup of sugar to give the rim that green glittery tint.

Add a lime for garnish and additional flavor.

Recipe and photo from Whattodrink.com

The Emerald Crush

This easy-to-make drink is sweet and to the point.

Recipe:

2 oz. Blue Ice Organic Wheat Vodka
½ kiwi
½ lime
1 tsp. sugar
Peel kiwi and cut lime into quarters. Muddle fruit and sugar in a shaker until well crushed and juicy. Add ice and vodka, and shake vigorously. Pour all contents into a glass and drink with a straw. Source: Blue Ice Organic Wheat Vodka

Time to eat! 

The following recipes are both fairly easy to make and don’t require a lot of time to prepare. If all else fails, you can always throw together a tasty salad and order pizza…

Corned Beef & Cabbage

cornedbeefandcabbage1 300x300 3 Ways to Celebrate St. Patricks Day If tradition is your thing, corned beef is your meat. A bonus? One serving is less than 300 calories!

Makes: 6 servings
Prep 10 mins
Cook 52 mins

Ingredients

  • 3 pounds corned beef brisket
  • 1/2 cup sliced onion (1 small)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 1/2 pounds cabbage, cut into 6 wedges

Directions

1. Trim any visible fat from the meat. Set aside.

2. Place rack in a 4- to 6-quart pressure cooker. Add the meat, onion, bay leaf, black peppercorns, and water.

3. Lock lid in place. Place pressure regulator on vent pipe (if you have a first-generation cooker). Over high heat, bring cooker up to pressure. Reduce heat just enough to maintain pressure and pressure regulator rocks gently; cook for 50 minutes.

4. Allow pressure to come down naturally. Carefully remove lid. With a slotted spoon remove the meat and onions to a serving platter; set aside.

5. Place the wedges of cabbage in the pressure cooker. Lock lid in place. Place pressure regulator on vent pipe (if you have a first-generation cooker). Over high heat, bring cooker up to pressure. Reduce heat just enough to maintain pressure and pressure regulator rocks gently; cook for 2 minutes.

6. Quick-release the pressure. Carefully remove lid. With a slotted spoon remove the cabbage wedges. Serve with meat and onions. Makes 6 main-dish servings.

Recipe and photo from Better Homes & Gardens

If corned beef isn’t your thing:

Corned beef & cabbage isn’t for everyone. If you’re still in the spirit of the Irish you can always spring for this simple Shepherd’s Pie Recipe.

End the evening with a wee bit of dessert:

thankyoucookes 3 Ways to Celebrate St. Patricks Day  Send your guests home with a little goodie back of green macaroons! You can purchase them at a grocery store or make some yourself.

2. Sunday Fun Day with the kidlets:

Momables Leprechaun Grilled Cheese
Start the party off with a nutritious and fun lunch!

St Pattys Grilled Cheese 3 Ways to Celebrate St. Patricks Day Mix broccoli pesto and cheese with whole wheat bread to create this gooey, delicious lunch. Pair it with soup and you have the perfect meal for the holiday.

Recipe from MOMables.com

Housing a Forest’s Shamrock Crystals

shamrockcrystals 3 Ways to Celebrate St. Patricks Day This easy-to-make sparkling shamrocks make perfect decor the kids’ rooms, gifts for family members or just a souvenir from a fun day. Thorough directions and how-to photos are available here.

Dinner Time! Start the evening with a warm Creamy Potato Casserole

creamypotatocasserolerecipe1 300x300 3 Ways to Celebrate St. Patricks Day Makes: 6 servings
Prep 30 mins
Bake 350°F 1 hr 10 mins
Stand 10 mins

Ingredients

  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon-style mustard
  • 1 3/4 cups milk
  • 1/2 8 ounce reduced-fat cream cheese (Neufchatel), cut up
  • 1 cup Gruyere cheese, shredded (4 oz.)
  • 1 tablespoon snipped fresh chives or green onions
  • 1 1/2 pounds Yukon gold or round red potatoes, cut in thin wedges
  • 8 ounces sliced cooked Black Forest ham or country ham, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup coarsely crushed bagel chips
  • Thyme and/or Italian parsley leaves

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 2-quart rectangular baking dish; set aside.

2. For sauce, in medium saucepan cook onion in hot butter over medium heat 5 minutes or until tender; stirring occasionally. Stir in flour and mustard. Add milk all at once. Cook and stir over medium heat until slightly thickened and bubbly. Reduce heat to low. Whisk in Neufchatel cheese until smooth. Gradually add 1/2 cup of the Gruyere cheese until cheese is melted. Stir in chives.

3. In bowl combine potatoes, ham, and sauce; toss gently to combine. Transfer to prepared baking dish.

4. Bake, covered, 1 hour or until potatoes are tender. Uncover; stir carefully. Sprinkle with crushed chips and remaining cheese. Bake, uncovered, 10 to 15 minutes more or until cheese is melted. Let stand, 10 minutes before serving. Sprinkle with herbs. Serves 6.

Recipe and photo from Better Homes & Gardens

And if you’re the super ambitious type, treat your children to these tasty confections:

rainbowshamrockclose 300x201 3 Ways to Celebrate St. Patricks Day Bridget’s Double-Decker Rainbow Shamrock Cookies are sure to delight your kids and provide them with a fun and colorful way to end a full day of St. Patrick’s Day festivities. Click on the photo to for a full tutorial on how to make these little goodies.

 

3. For those who are just not inclined to cook:

If you are in the area, McKinley’s Grille at Fairplex is offering a special St. Patrick’s Day feast. All weekend Chef David Teig is serving up his special Corned Beef & Cabbage as well as $3 green beer.

On the other side of campus, Finish Line Sports Grill is doling out its own St. Patty’s Day feast. Guests who visit on Sunday will enjoy plenty of drink and food specials all day long. It’s Sunday Funday at its finest.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Upcoming Fairplex Events in 2013

…And we are back!

As usual, the holiday season was jam-packed with parties. Fairplex and the Sheraton Hotel and Conference Center played host to a number of events towards the end of December and we aren’t slowing down in the slightest with 2013!

Some of our upcoming events include…

3293 1artreach 150x132 Upcoming Fairplex Events in 2013 ArtReach 2013 (The Art of Food): The second annual regional high school art exhibition will showcase the artwork and talent of local students in the form of visual art work, the theme being food! Parents, friends and others in the community can check out the creativity at the Millard Sheets Center for the Arts.

lemonlogo 150x150 Upcoming Fairplex Events in 2013 Upland Lemon Festival: On the last weekend of April, the Upland Lemon Festival brings  the Upland community and surrounding areas together to celebrate the agricultural history of the town. Swing by downtown Upland and check out the rides, food competitions, Lemon Idol and other fun activities.


logo 150x150 Upcoming Fairplex Events in 2013 Los Angeles International Wine & Spirits Competition:
2013 marks the 75th annual wine competition at Fairplex with entries from around the world. We can’t wait to see (and taste!) the different wines, spirits and olive oils this year’s competitors will bring.

 

2012kaboom 01 150x150 Upcoming Fairplex Events in 2013 Kaboom!: Celebrate the 4th of July with us for a day full of motorcross, monster trucks and a spectacular fireworks show. Fairplex also offers a buffet to guests. It’s a great way to kick off the summer festivities.

 

County fair logo sept  150x150 Upcoming Fairplex Events in 2013 L.A. County Fair 2013: It’s hard to picture the Fair now, with snow on the mountain tops and the heater on high, but before you know it, the L.A. County Fair will be up and running and the smell of deep-fried everything will float through the air.

 

Looks like 2013 will be full of fun and excitement for Fairplex!

 

10 tips for making your client happy

Fairplex is more than just the L.A. County Fair. The Sheraton Fairplex Hotel and Conference Center as well as several areas of the campus are utilized for events throughout the year, from conferences to trade shows, dinner parties to weddings.

I sat down with Beth Gallagher, director of food and beverage at Fairplex to ask what she does to ensure her clients the best event experience possible. Here are some of her most helpful tips:

1. Understand client expectations. What may seem like a small part of the event for you can be a stressful ordeal for the client. Know what your client’s priorities are and what they are worried about and attend each task accordingly.

2. Get the basic blueprint. During the initial conversation Beth makes sure to get basic information from the client before any detailed planning. How many people are attending, what time of day the event is and the nature of the event are all questions she gets answered before deciding what space would be most accommodating to them.

3. Uncover the details.This goes back to listening to clients. Sometimes a client won’t verbalize a clear picture of what they want or they just glaze over the details. Uncover their tastes and pick up on clues as you prepare to draft your proposal to them.

4. Customize, customize, customize. Not every hotel has the flexibility to do this, but at Fairplex, Beth makes it a top priority to customize the event packages, meals and venue as exactly to the client’s preferences as possible. Whether it’s lighting, color schemes or bringing in additional furniture or decor, try to make the event as unique to your client as possible. Make them feel like they matter.

5. Know your real estate. Sell your event space as real estate. “The zip code for one of our ballrooms on a Saturday night is the equivalent of Beverly Hills,” Beth said. The price per square foot is higher when the space is in demand. The price changes from day to day, season to season.

6. On decorating… Fairplex staff tries to meet all client needs as much as possible. This includes not only catering and lights but decorating the event space as well. Beth collaborates with her team and, based off the agenda and theme given to her by the clients, transforms the facilities into a space worthy of mention. “We evolve what we have into what they want,” Beth said. So far that has meant everything from a ballroom into a night club, an expo hall into an ice rink and a lawn into a jazz lounge.

7. Make sure your teams work well together–or at least get the job done. “We work like siblings,” Beth says. “Sometimes teams don’t agree on the way something should be done, but at the end of the day we have the same goal. Whatever we do, we make sure there is a constant line of communication.” Your client will be most happy when the job is done.

8. Be a perfectionist but know when to let go. The success is in the details. It’s important to care about the little things as well as see the big picture. At the same time it’s essential to know when to let something go. If you–the perfectionist event planner–are the only one who notices it, and your client and his/her guests are having a good time, just let it go.

9. Keep diversity (especially culture) in mind when it comes to food.When it comes to food the first thing to do is figure out how important it is to a client. In some cultures the quality of food is a way of displaying a client’s status. In other cultures it is the main form of showing hospitality. The bottom line is that realizing food preferences and level of importance differs with each client. See what works best for that particular scenario.

10. Know your venue’s strengths and capitalize on them. Fairplex and the Sheraton Fairplex Hotel and Conference Center excels in customizable space, high quality food and excellent customer service. The first thing Beth shows potential clients is the flexibility each space has. This can be anything from setting up a mock wine tasting to an elaborate table display during the initial visit.

Beth entered the event industry working for a small party rental company. Since then she has spent time working on sales and event operations for the Olympics, sports arenas throughout the nation and professional golf and tennis tournaments. She also owned her own catering company prior to joining the team at Fairplex.

A little holiday magic in Los Angeles

1 icerinksamo A little holiday magic in Los Angeles

Photo by laist.com

Well, “winter” is fast approaching in Southern California. We might even see some drizzle or something. While some L.A. lokes are lucky enough to escape to the mountains for a couple weeks of White Christmas, the rest of us are stuck in the smog-covered glory we like to call Los Angeles. And that means traffic. And crowds of people in every mall, restaurant, grocery store and other places we need to be to throw our holiday parties.

Don’t think this is a negative blog post though! In fact, our friends at LAist just released their top three picks on where to find a little winter fun with their top ice skating spots in the city. Parties don’t have to be confined to ballrooms, bars and homes. Why not move your guests to the ice?

Follow the jump to check out some prime locations for a little winter fun. Click.

Also from LAist: Up your holiday hosting game with one of their suggested classes. No one will accuse you of making bad food or decorating poorly. Start being awesome.

Facebook Marketing: Dead or Alive?

FacebookDead Facebook Marketing: Dead or Alive?

Is it game over for Facebook's marketing useage? (Photo taken from FreshAesthetics.com)

It’s not like Facebook is deemed stabbed to death in the event industry but is it the best option for sharing content?

Communicating to your audience/public via social media is key to getting your message out there.

The question lies in which platform is the most effective. Eventbrite released an infographic showing the effectiveness of Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn for their events.

Turns out that while Twitter generates the most visits per shares, it is Facebook that brings home the bacon, as far as revenues per share goes.

That being said, is Facebook marketing still effective? Are people still reading content, visiting the company web page and most importantly, processing and remembering what they have seen? BusyEvent‘s director of social marketing, Nicci Anderson gave her opinion on the subject as well as some helpful tips on what NOT to do when using Facebook as a marketing tool. (Tips include knowing when your “sharing” of content turns into an overload resembling spam.)

Check out the article on Liz King Events.

From Fair to Off-Roading

overview zps612f130b From Fair to Off RoadingFor those of you who attended the Fair this year, you can imagine that the strike operation for this month-long event was no walk in the park. Rides, food stands, carnival games and prizes, livestock and exhibits all had to be organized, logged and packed away. That is time consuming in itself, but how do you transition the strike of a 400+ acre Fair and set-up a large expo… in two days?

expo1 300x225 From Fair to Off Roading

Goodbye Ferris wheel, hello off-roading!

It took a total of three weeks to set up the Fair. We had two days to strike and prepare for the next set of events taking place on the grounds. This year we had the Lucas Oil Off-Road Expo setting up shop in one area of the fairgrounds, the Quilt, Craft and Sew festival located in one of the expo halls AND the So Cal College Fair launching in the Sheraton Conference Center.

So what does the strike of Fair look like? Fairplex event services manager Pat Wright gave some of us his tips for a successful, seamless transition from one event to another, no matter what the time limit is.

Before even beginning…

1. Establish and reinforce agreement contracts. The vendors, concessionaires, carnival team and sponsors needed to be packed up by noon the day after the Fair’s close. Pat made sure each and every crew understood their agreement with Fairplex, giving them ample time to assemble the manpower needed to tear down their booths, pack up equipment and head out for the year.

Time to close up shop…

2. Next the contractors come in to take down the hundreds of canopies, tents, tables and other temporary facilities that are brought in for the Fair.

Bring in the cleaning experts!

3. Finally, it’s time to clean. Fairplex hires several cleaning crews including a pressure washing team and environmental services crew to scrub and scour every exposition hall, every warehouse and every inch of cement into a spotless canvas for the next event. The crews worked from Tuesday night into Wednesday morning in order to accomplish this.

It’s showtime! Again…

4. As the cleaning crews pack up and head home, the next client is “knocking” on Fairplex’s doors bright and early, ready to set up for their events.

As you can see, it takes hundreds of people for an effective strike, especially with 48 hours or less to get everything done. But it can be done!

Pat gave us his top three pieces of advice to survive the madness:

1. Get a good night’s rest — as often as you can
2. Come into the day with lots of resolve
3. Communicate effectively with your team and partners. “It’s my team that gets everything done,” he said. “I make sure that they know when and where the priority is. It’s all about being aware of what is going on that day.”