When it's so hot that people are competing to see how successfully they can bake cookies on the dashboards of their cars, you know it's going to be a cruel, cruel summer.
The wicked heat in some places and power outages affecting more than 1.7 million at press time are challenging every last shred of resourcefulness event professionals can muster.
My Facebook feed keeps sharing spooky stories of florists whose stifling warehouses are wilting the flowers needed for weddings and of caterers thanking their stars that they invested in backup generators so they can keep cooking for clients.
The only thing putting a chill on all the hot-weather headlines is the economic news.
Our latest online poll shows almost a third of event professionals think we're headed into another recession. However, roughly the same percentage think things are unchanged from last year, while just over a third think things are getting better.
This issue brings the 11th edition of our annual corporate event marketplace study. Turn to page 17 to see how 2012 is playing out and what the industry expects for 2013.
While the whole world seems muggy and unpleasant right now, one thing should give you faith in the future of our business, and that it is our set of profiles of “30 Under 40” — the young event professionals who are shaping the future of special events. Turn to page 21 for more.
What is significant about our list of next-generation event pros is what their expertise means for our industry.
Events will always require long hours and — truth be told — often tedious work to achieve dramatic effects. There are no shortcuts to greatness.
But the young pros we profile here have built on the strong foundation laid down by their predecessors. They are now developing events that are more sophisticated, more effective, more powerful than the events of 30 years ago.
I hope you enjoy reading about these leaders of tomorrow as much as we enjoyed writing about them. And if you have a wonderful young pro you want us to interview, please email me at [email protected].