Covid-19…..Corona Virus…..These words have haunted the event industry since early March. The devastating Corona Virus has rendered our entire country helpless; you’re only allowed outside if you’re considered an “essential worker”; gatherings of any size with anyone not in your immediate home have been brought to a screeching halt; and event industry professionals are left with more questions than answers.
I wanted to write a calm and reassuring blog post. However, I cannot lie. I am neither calm nor reassured. Small business (which is largely what the event industry is made of) are suffering greatly. Many event profs are facing the crushing reality that they may have to close their doors and walk away from the industry they love. And of course, it isn’t just the small businesses or the event industry. It’s EVERY SINGLE INDUSTRY. Whether it’s reduced work forces, overworked first responders, underpaid grocery clerks, lack of PPE, every single industry is being affected as a result of Corona virus.
Life is still marching forward. There are still moments to celebrate—babies being born, birthdays, anniversaries, graduations—each of these invaluable moments are occurring every day and it has forced the event industry to re-think what an event really is. I can’t tell you how many couples have reached out about conducting virtual weddings; how many drive-by baby showers are occurring; how many ride pasts are happening with plentiful balloons, songs and celebrants. Our world is shifting and changing and it’s time that we in the event industry, learn to adapt to that dreaded “c” word—CHANGE.
It’s not that the event industry doesn’t like change—it’s that it takes away the thing that most planners must have—control. Our grandiose party themes seem frivolous in the wake of the devastation that Corona virus is leaving behind, yet we MUST celebrate. You deserve those celebrations. WE deserve those celebrations. So, when your planner reaches out to you, try not to take your frustrations out on us. We are navigating territory NONE OF US has ever seen or experienced. It’s DEFINITELY been a learning curve for my company.
I want to just remind each of you that the bright moments in your life deserve celebration. Maybe it’s not a full-blown party with crazy décor. Perhaps it’s thinking about being surrounded by those you loved the most. Maybe it’s about spending a few moments quietly thanking your higher power for what you have survived. Maybe it’s about just being present in the moment, stripped bare of all the accoutrements. Whatever it is and however you do it, celebrate. Never stop celebrating. You don’t know when it may be the last time you get to do so.
Take care of yourselves, wash your hands and put that mask on.