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Latest organizers news and updates

Money Matters - Simplified


Money woes force cancellation of parade

Orlando, Fla. -- The 2010 Orlando Christmas Parade has been canceled because of money problems, organizers in Florida said.

Organizers said it will be replaced by a smaller event called the Santa Farewell Festival, the Orlando (Fla.) Sentinel reported.

"With better economic times ahead, the parade will hopefully return in 2011," parade producer Teri Boardman said. "Thank you to all past participants and parade supporters."

Boardman said dwindling sponsorship forced her to cancel the 2010 edition of the parade, which is not funded by the city.

"It all comes down to sponsors equal money to pay city [fees]," Boardman said.

124 to compete in Driedel Spin-Off

New York -- Organizers of the Major League Dreidel Spin-off in New York said 124 people are registered to spin the Hanukkah tops at this year's event.

Eric Pavony, 31, who founded the annual event in 2005, said the top spinners from miles around are expected to turn up Thursday at the Knitting Factory to compete for the crystal dreidel trophy, the New York Daily News reported Wednesday.

Pavony said many competitors spin under holiday-themed aliases, including Spinny the Pooh, the Spincredible Hulk, Spindiana Jones and Oscar de la Menorah.

Franco and Hathaway named Oscar hosts

Beverly Hills, Calif. -- James Franco and Anne Hathaway are to serve as co-hosts of the 83rd Academy Awards ceremony in Los Angeles, organizers said.

The announcement was made Monday by Oscar telecast producers Bruce Cohen and Don Mischer.

Both Franco and Hathaway have previously appeared on the telecast but not as hosts.

"James Franco and Anne Hathaway personify the next generation of Hollywood icons -- fresh, exciting and multi-talented. We hope to create an Oscar broadcast that will both showcase their incredible talents and entertain the world on Feb. 27," Cohen and Mischer said in a joint statement. "We are completely thrilled that James and Anne will be joining forces with our brilliant creative team to do just that."

Small stores find event to call their own

Washington -- Small, independent corner stores might be able to counter-punch the national retail chains with Small Business Saturday, organizers of a new retail event said.

As big-box stores across the nation prepare for their annual discount gala the day after Thanksgiving called Black Friday, the Mom and Pop boutiques in those old-fashioned, sometimes struggling downtown shopping districts can have a day of their own, said Rosa Sabater, senior vice president at American Express, which is credited with cooking up the idea, The Washington Post reported Saturday.

"The number one issue facing small businesses is they don't have enough people walking in their door. That is something we can all help with," Sabater said.

Rihanna set to kick off AMAs broadcast

Los Angeles -- Recording star Rihanna has been booked to open the 2010 American Music Awards show in Los Angeles, organizers said Friday.

The announcement was made by Orly Adelson, president of dick clark productions.

This will mark Rihanna's fourth time performing on the AMAs. She joins a lineup of previously announced acts including Diddy-Dirty Money, Ne-Yo, Bon Jovi, P!nk, Christina Aguilera, Justin Bieber, Katy Perry, Ke$ha and Usher.

Rihanna is nominated for an AMA in the Soul/Rhythm & Blues category for Favorite Female Artist.

The prize presentation is to be broadcast live from the NOKIA Theatre L.A. LIVE Nov. 21 on ABC.

Godard won't attend Governors Awards

Los Angeles -- French New Wave film director Jean-Luc Godard will not attend the Governors Awards in Los Angeles to accept his honorary Oscar, organizers said Monday.

No reason was given for the 79-year-old filmmaker's absence from the planned Nov. 13 event.

"He reiterated his thanks for the award," Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences President Tom

Sherak said in a statement, "and also sent his good wishes to the other individuals being honored the same night -- Kevin Brownlow, Francis Ford Coppola and Eli Wallach -- who he refers to as 'the three other musketeers.'"

The ceremony, which is being produced by Sid Ganis and Don Mischer, will pay tribute to Godard through film clips and commentary by his admirers.

Ball raises $2.5M for diabetes center

Los Angeles -- A Carousel of Hope Ball in Los Angeles raised $2.5 million for the Barbara Davis Center for Childhood Diabetes, organizers said..

The 32nd anniversary event at the Beverly Hilton Saturday featured performances by recording artists Jennifer Lopez, Marc Anthony, Gladys Knight and Akon.

The ball was founded by Barbara Davis and the late Marvin Davis in 1977. Thousands of children and young adults have received specialized care at the center named for Barbara Davis, who was host of the weekend event.

Among those who attended this year's ball to raise money for the institution were:

Aguilera to perform at AMA show

Los Angeles -- Pop star Christina Aguilera has been booked to perform at the 38th annual American Music Awards show in Los Angeles, organizers said.

Aguilera's performance is expected to feature a live number from her upcoming film "Burlesque," which will be released by Screen Gems, a division of Sony Pictures, on Nov. 24. She will join other previously announced acts including Bon Jovi, P!nk and Usher at the AMAs. Additional performers and presenters for the Nov. 21 awards show will be announced in the coming weeks, its producers said.

The event is to be broadcast live from the NOKIA Theatre L.A. LIVE on ABC.

Detroit Halloween bash 'in jeopardy'

Detroit -- Organizers of a large-scale Halloween block party in Detroit said demands from city officials could lead to the event's cancellation.

The people behind the Theatre Bizarre Halloween Party, scheduled Saturday near the former State Fairgrounds, said city inspectors are insisting they obtain a temporary liquor license and they fear more demands may be forthcoming, The Detroit News reported Thursday.

"The whole party is in jeopardy," said Ken Poirier, organizer of the event. "The (major) sticking point is that we don't have a liquor license."
Poirier said the city also told him a food inspector would have to visit the day of the party, costing organizers $750.

Rose Bowl queen picked

Pasadena, Calif. -- Evanne Friedmann has been named the 93rd rose queen for the 2011 Tournament of Roses in Pasadena, Calif., organizers announced Tuesday.

The announcement concludes a month-long process that began with more than 1,000 Pasadena-area young women who participated in the Tournament of Roses Royal Court tryouts.

Queen Evanne, 17, was selected from the recently appointed seven-member royal court and will reign over the 2011 New Year's Day festivities, culminating with the 122nd Rose Parade -- themed Building Dreams, Friendships & Memories -- and the 97th Rose Bowl game.