We had an awesome year here at Cox Events Group. From creating and producing new events, to reinventing events we’ve had for two decades plus, to promotions and new responsibilities…It’s been fun and gives us a lot to look forward to in 2018. Check it out:
New Events and Partnerships in 2017
Pink and Swine – Our first event in Tallahassee that we partnered on together with 4Rivers Smokehouse and FSU’s Dedman School of Hospitality was a great experience. This was an inaugural event that exceeded expectations and raised a good amount of dollars for two deserving recipients, Tallahassee Memorial Cancer Center and FSU’s School of Hospitality.
Event Successes in 2017
This November’s Cows ‘n Cabs saw unprecedented expansion with 33 of the best restaurants and chefs in Central Florida. This event has quietly become the best culinary happening in Orlando by a long shot. If you don’t think so, you simply haven’t been.
We took two of our annual event stalwarts – 98.9 WMMO’s Downtown Concert Series and the 47th Annual Fall Fiesta in the Park – and combined the two at Lake Eola a few weeks back. The results were what we hoped for: growth to both audiences, crowds staying around longer, more families and better sponsor and brand awareness. We look to continue this trend in 2018.
The Orlando Whiskey Festival. Cox Events Group took over full production on this year’s event and it came off well. We look to grow ticket sales in a big way in 2018 with more dollars going to its charity of choice, The Lovely Project.
The K92.3 All Star Jam. Fastest sellout time in history within a week of announcing and record ticket and sponsor revenue were bragging points for this radio station’s heritage event. This is a one-of-a-kind experience for both patrons and sponsors, and continues to be our biggest driver of revenue in events on an annual basis.
Our continuing work with many local charities was a highlight and focus in 2017, including work with the following groups: Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Florida, Florida Citrus Sports, Make-a-Wish, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, the City of Orlando’s After School All Stars, Elevate Orlando, Community Youth Trust, Rotary Club of Seminole County South, United Against Poverty and the Lovely Project.
And possibly the most unique event of all – we put the band Train in an airplane hangar for a private concert in Kissimmee. This was an awesome gig for patrons and the staff!
Promotions and New Jobs
Felicia Wong, one of our superstar part-time production assistants, took a job in-house here at Cox Media Group as our latest National Promotions Manager.
Mariah Roberts, another of our leaders on the production side of things, took a full-time position with partner Dr. Phillips Performing Arts Center. She now is their Community Arts Programming Coordinator.
Our main man, Wes Halliwell went from Events Director to another in-house department as Local Sales Manager of Digital Marketing, which is a major focus of current and future business here at Cox Media Group.
New Additions to the Team
Rock stars Sam and Olivia joined Cox Events Group as interns over in September and we expect both to stay on permanently when their internship periods end.
Big News from the Team
Natasha took personal trips to Italy with her best friend Adjani and to California to see her brother, Josh.
Dan took personal trips with his wife Kristi and friends to both France and Bermuda.
Rockstar Jillian was a guest at the NAB Radio Show in Austin and The Radio Ink Forecast in New York.
Preeti is expecting her first child with her husband, Rohan, due in February!
Brie took party trips to New York and Las Vegas, baby.
Zack took a road trip to Nashville and bought a new camera. Dude knows his videography and photography.
Shantae traveled to Washington, DC and New Orleans, and also helped produce BET Award Shows in Miami and Los Angeles (part of her third job).
Looking Ahead to 2018
2018 will be a year of change for Cox Events Group. We are working on our calendar of events now and things won’t be the same as they have been in years’ past necessarily. Instead of producing as many events as possible, we are taking a tactical approach and finding the events that make the most sense revenue-wise as well as time management-wise. This is a new avenue of growth for us that is welcome and we may even get a few weekends back to ourselves. Imagine that.
New events we’re focused on for 2018 include Orlando Sound Bites (expect more information on this badass music and food event coming soon), Beard in Baldwin (an excellent food and wine event in its second year associated with the James Beard Foundation), Florida Citrus Sports’ Kickoff Classic Fanfest between Alabama and Louisville in September, and the continued growth and combination of 98.9 WMMO’s Downtown Concert Series and our Fall Fiesta in the Park in November.
That’s about it for the year in a nutshell. Be on the lookout for our amazing Christmas card. If you’ve gotten one, you know what’s up.
Dan, Natasha and the Cox Events Group Team