The Empty Event: An Industry Devastated by the Global Pandemic

September 10, 2020

On Labor Day (intentional), a group of passionate Hospitality and Live Event professionals gathered on Copley Square to create an Empty Event; one of many taking place across the country this summer.  The Empty Event was just that: a full scale event set-up where no one attended to demonstrate the devastation to our industry since March 2020.

On average our Industry contributes over $1trillion in economic output and employs almost 12million ppl (compared to 1.7 million in the auto industry).  With 90% of 2020 Live Events being canceled and millions of industry folks out of work with no end in sight, this event was “to showcase and remind people that [an event] doesn’t magically appear. That there are these extremely talented and highly skilled and trained professionals that build them,” Nancy Shaffer, President of Live Events Coalition.

As an industry, we are looking for a seat at the table to make sure our One Voice is heard; we desperately need additional Federal support to ensure we are here to entertain, educate, and provide you all joy and happiness on the other side of this pandemic.  From bus boys to bus drivers and auctioneers to audio engineers, they are all out of work.  The Live Events industry is primarily made up of all small, independent businesses that don’t have private equity backers, shares or deep corporate pockets; our lifeline is very short. We need more help by expanding the Payment Protection Program.

Photo cred: Matt Teuten Photography

Photo cred: 13 Photography