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  • Meet Wayne Fernandez, The Streamliner

     
    POSTED June 13, 2017
     

Ever since he was a teenaged event manager in Melbourne, Australia, Wayne Fernandez has sought ways to work leaner, faster and bigger. Today he has dual roles as general manager of the Magic Box at the Reef, a downtown Los Angeles venue and small convention center with over 100,000 square feet of event space, and head of Curated Events, his event production company. Efficiency matters more than ever to him, and with his proprietary cost- and time-saving software, Exhibitor Management Tool, Fernandez is out to streamline how events are planned, managed and invoiced.

CAM+E: What was the inspiration for the software?
WF: I started it from scratch five years ago when I produced art shows. I had no money for staff and I needed to simplify production. 

CAM+E: What does your software do?
WF:
We simplified the event production element for our clients with free software. It centralizes all the data for their event, including invoices, in one place. We can customize all the materials planners need, put them in our inventory and everything is accessible through the dashboard.

CAM+E: How is the Magic Box different from other venues?
WF: We are not a pipe-and-drape event center. We use a hard wall system that I developed for art shows. We build a floor plan so it looks purpose-built for you. Once we decide on a layout, we can set up a numbering convention for the booths and parameters within the software. You can print name tags, send everyone emails with one click, and see in real time what documents are on file.

CAM+E: What special advantage do you provide to event planners?
WF: I’m one of them. I know the pain that they go through because I’ve been through it for most of my life. I’ll understand their event and give recommendations about how they can save costs and make it work the best way it can here. And unlike the other trade show spaces, we are a one-stop shop. 

CAM+E: What changes are you seeing in event production?
WF:
There is a movement toward more of an organic feel. Trade shows used to be very linear and corporate. Now people are looking for production that is a little anti-convention. Instead of building a floor plan on a square grid, we’re creating pod areas and making things more free-flowing. 

Dennis Galloway is from what he calls “the first Washington,” aka Washington, D.C. But after 9/11, he decided to change coasts. “You can’t live on red alert,” Galloway says. “Life’s too short.”

So he packed up and moved to Seattle, trying on many hospitality hats once he arrived, before landing at the Washington State Convention Center as its sales manager in 2012.

“I went from meeting management to an event manager to catering sales and ended up at the convention center,” he says. 

 

Porsche roared into Southern California recently with the opening of the German car manufacturer’s Porsche Experience Center (PEC) in Carson. A car lover’s Disneyland, the PEC can turn a corporate meeting into a true driving adventure

 

This is the kind of cocktail you don’t want to attempt to reproduce at home. To create that rosemary mint foam you will need both a nitrous-oxide whipper and an eyedropper (to dispense precisely two drops of rosemary essential oil). It’s the type of complex specialty drink you can find only at specialty bars, in this case the newcomer Mezcal Bar, which is tucked behind a curtain at the West Hollywood restaurant Laurel Hardware, and features nearly 100 different Mezcals sourced from more than 50 distillers.