Prepares for Attack Anniversary
May 21, 3:56 PM ET
TED SHAFFREY, Associated Press Writer
NEW YORK (AP) - The
sprawling Jacob K. Javits Convention
Center will be all but empty. The
banquet rooms at the Waldorf-Astoria
hotel won't echo with the usual dinner
and speech-making din. And tents for the
city's fall fashion shows probably will
go up later than normal.
Event calendars are wide
open the week of Sept. 11 in New York,
as planners have postponed or moved
conventions, celebrations and trade
shows in deference to the one-year
anniversary of the terror attacks
against the United States.
"That period this
year is very, unusually soft," said
Jim Blauvelt, the Waldorf's executive
director of catering. "People need
that time to reflect and heal."
In years past, the
Waldorf was booked that week with United
Nations fetes, gala charity balls and
fashion week celebrations.
At the Javits Center,
the only show scheduled is an
international flower exhibition that
opens Sept. 12. That's unusual for a
venue that is otherwise nearly booked
through the end of 2003, spokesman Mike
"If somebody wanted
to book a show, we would book
them," said Eisgrau. But, he said,
show management companies are shying
away from that week, in which Sept. 11
falls on a Wednesday.
Although plans for the
anniversary are still being put together
in the city, memorial events are likely
to dominate the week. The National
Association of Police Organizations, for
example, has scheduled a ceremony on
Amy Solomonson, a
spokeswoman for NYC & Company, the
city's tourism bureau, downplayed the
significance of the sparse schedule,
attributing it partly to a normal
slowdown around the Jewish holidays.
Still, organizers for
the Fall Fair for International Fine and
Decorative Arts and the Gay Life Expo
say they rescheduled their events
because of the anniversary.
"We heard that
there were memorial events during that
time so we called Javits and were able
to reschedule for the following
week," said Sarah Flynn, director
of marketing for Florida-based
International Fine Arts Exhibitions.
Steve Levenberg, chief
operating officer of the Manhattan-based
Consolidated Management Associates,
moved the third annual Gay Life Expo, a
consumer show, from the week of Sept. 11
Levenberg's company is
also staging Club Nation, a first-time
national trade show for nightclub
owners, at Webster Hall in the East
Village, at the end of September.
scheduled it away from the week of Sept.
11," said Levenberg. "People
may not have felt good about having a
good time that week."
Like several other
organizers, Levenberg said fear of
potential violence during the week
didn't figure into his decision.
"It never once
passed through our minds," he said.
"We're not going to let ourselves
be intimidated. Life will go on."
The fall fashion shows,
held under tents in midtown Manhattan's
Bryant Park, are expected to be pushed
back from their original dates of Sept.
8-15. Organizers are considering the
following week, but haven't set a firm
date because they must coordinate with
show planners in Europe.
Others not wanting to
tread on emotions that week include MTV,
which moved up its 2002 MTV Video Music
Awards show at Radio City Music Hall
from Sept. 5 to August 29.
Paul Wilmot said his
public relations firm postponed the New
York launch of pop star Jennifer Lopez's
first perfume that week.
that clients do nothing, absolutely
nothing, that week," Wilmot said.
"It may be different in other parts
of the country, but in New York it'll be
a time to be with friends and