LVCVA praises Electric Daisy Carnival, seeks ties with rave producers
12 July 2011
The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority took a pass on getting involved with last month’s Electric Daisy Carnival at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
Today, authority board members were singing a different tune.
After a report from Las Vegas Events President Pat Christenson on recent special events, several board members spoke about developing a closer relationship with producers of the three-day electronic music rave.
“There was less trouble there than at similar events on the Strip,” said new board Chairman Tom Collins, a Clark County commissioner. “The participants were the most polite young kids that I’ve ever been around.”
Christenson said authority staff is still evaluating the economic impact of the June 24-26 event, which is considered the largest music show in state history. He said his associates have discussed developing an electronic music conference in conjunction with the event and having related events in the city. Others discussed showing off the success of the event and inviting other musical genres to stage festivals here.
Collins said he attended the event and discussed safety and security with Metro Police hired keep an eye on participants. Authorities reported 27 felony arrests, most for possession of illegal narcotics, and 31 misdemeanor arrests over the three days. About 230,000 attended the three-day event.
Board member Tom Jenkin, a Caesars Entertainment executive, said room rates and occupancy rose and guests were well-behaved.
Christenson said the success of the event partially mitigated the city’s loss of the USA Basketball Showcase and the National Basketball Association Summer League this year.
The two basketball events were canceled because of the NBA lockout that began July 1 after the league failed to agree on a labor deal with its players union.
The USA Basketball Showcase, a tuneup for American basketball teams headed to the Olympic Games or the FIBA World Championships, have drawn 6,000 to 18,500 fans over the past four years, depending on what to world stage the team was destined. The 18,500 attendance was in 2008 when the team was headed for the Olympics in Beijing. The authority estimated the event had a $4.6 million nongaming economic impact on the city.
Attendance at the NBA Summer League has climbed steadily since 2007, according to the NBA. In 2010, the event drew 42,806 fans who watched rookie and second-year players in exhibition games as they tried to impress coaches in their bids to make their respective teams.
In other business, the board approved spending $260,000 to market La Cumbre, a major conference directed at attracting Latin American tourists.
The authority has participated in La Cumbre for the past 20 years, and the event is meeting in Las Vegas for the third time in 10 years.
Scheduled Sept. 7-10, La Cumbre brings tour operators and media from throughout Latin America with most participants coming from Mexico, Brazil, Argentina and Colombia. The authority expects to recoup $110,000 in sponsorships and advertising. The $260,000 expenditure would be used for an opening-night party, booth design and exhibit space, a news conference and media reception, media rooms, transportation and decorations, signs and printing.
Cathy Tull, senior vice president of marketing, also reported that the National Auto Dealers Association has signed a six-show contract with the city from 2016 to 2026. The event, which draws 20,000 participants to Las Vegas and has had a nongaming economic impact of $21 million in past years, is conducted every other year.
Today’s meeting was the first for several members who were sworn in for new terms in what is believed to have been the largest board turnover in its history. Most new members joined when term limits swept previous members out of municipal offices.
Joining were Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman and Councilman Steve Ross, replacing former Mayor Oscar Goodman and Councilman Gary Reese; North Las Vegas Mayor Shari Buck, replacing former Councilman William Robinson; and Henderson Mayor Andy Hafen, replacing Councilman Steve Kirk. Boulder City Councilman Cam Walker retained his seat, and the Mesquite City Council was scheduled to name a replacement for former Mayor Susan Holecheck tonight.
Among industry authority members, Paul Chakmak, executive vice president and chief operating officer of Boyd Gaming, replaced his boss, Boyd Gaming CEO Keith Smith, who resigned one year into a two-year term. Smith resigned after taking board positions with the American Gaming Association and the Nevada Resort Association this year.
Chakmak joins reappointed Nevada Resort Association representatives Scott Nielson of Station Casinos and Chuck Bowling of MGM Resorts International.
Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce representatives Jenkin and Kristin McMillan also were reappointed.
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