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ISES puts focus on eduction at Eventworld

Education took center stage on Day Two of “Eventworld,” the annual professional development conference staged by the International Special Events Society. The event runs through today at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Chicago.

Jan Rocco, head of Party Props in Houston, gave attendees tips on handling the wave of requests they receive to donate products and services to charities in the session “I’m All Out of Free and I’m Not Making Any More.”

No more Ms. Nice Guy: Jan Rocco speaks on 'I'm All Out of Free, and I'm Not Making Any More' (left).

She suggested moving away from donations and into sponsorships. For example, she asks for seats at the charity function to offset the value of her donation, then invites her clients to attend the function as her guests. “‘Free’ costs you,” she warned.

Celebrities at events can be a powerful draw, but whom to ask and what to pay can be challenging, according to Darcy Bouzeos, head of agency DBL Ltd. in Chicago. In her session “Working with Celebrities,” she offered tips on determining what celebrity to invite based on the event’s goals, how to use an agency to secure the celebrity and how much to expect to pay. “You won’ get Tom Cruise ‘for just 15 minutes,’” she cautioned.

Leave a legacy: Cher Przelomski asks attendees to donate to education for the industry's brighter future (right).

At the Legacy Lunch, which spotlights the ISES Education Foundation, the Southeast Region donated $2,228 in memory of the late Bob Blaesing, CSEP, the ISES treasurer who died suddenly last year. Outgoing ISEF president Harith Wickrema of Harith Productions, Oreland, Pa., also donated more than $2,000—his entire stipend from teaching special events at Temple University—to the foundation.

Incoming ISEF president Cher Przelomski, CSEP, of Planning Factory International in Wilmington, Del., asked members to be generous in their support of the foundation. “I challenge you to leave the industry better than you found it,” she said.

Really big bucks: The Southeast Region turns in more than $2,200 to ISEF (left).

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