‘Snow’ Getting Around Winter Work

by Dave Yusz, Building and Grounds Superintendent

I’m a snow man.

Notice the space in that. I’m not a snowman (it would be pretty impressive that I’d be writing this blow right now)! I’m a snow man. When it snows, I’m the man who has to deal with it.

And while winters in Erie are terrible all the time, it’s especially bad to deal with until the lake g"Haven't you finished shovelling the driveway yet?"ets frozen. When the winds kick up, the bay water washes up and tears up the sea walls. There’s been a few times where we have to block off the sidewalk down on the Bayfront because of ice and snow buildup.

The worst we’ve ever had it came last year at Christmastime. I’d ask if anyone remembers, but how could you forget? In addition to taking care of the Bayfront Convention Center area, we also take care of the Sheraton and Courtyard. Marvin, a crew leader here at the Bayfront Convention Center, and I came in on Christmas night to deal with the accumulation of snow.

We worked 17 hour days for 6 or 7 days straight.

It’s not that we don’t have the equipment. We have plows, a box blow, brushes, snowblowers, shovels…you name it, we’ve got it. But the other thing we’ve got is a whole bunch of property to take care of.

If it snows, say, six inches, it will take us five or six hours to have everything accessible for people. To have it spotless (or close, anyway), we’re looking at about 10 hours.

And, naturally, it snows at the most inconvenient times. If there’s an event, it’s three times worse, too. All you’re doing is trying to clear paths so that people can drive and get out. Unfortunately, that sometimes means a little snow ends up behind people’s cars, and yes, I notice the sign language they give me to show their appreciation for that snow!

I’ll end this blog with a little note about the geese, which I wrote about last time — and yes, they’re still there in the same spot by the Courtyard! They aren’t scared of our wolves!

The geese stay in the winter, and they like to go where we’ve paved. Often, we’ll be trying to pave a spot and there they are, standing in our way. We’ll rev the engine, honk the horn and do what we can to get them to move, but when they don’t — and they won’t — we go to another spot and come back later.

Even a snow man won’t mess with those geese.

 

 

 

Boogie on the Bay is Top Choice for New Year’s Party

by Brighid O’Brien, Executive Assistant/Premium Services Coordinator

Are you just starting to think about what your plans are for New Year’s Eve?  Boogie on the Bay the Hollywood Way at the Bayfront Convention Center is certainly the right fit!

Come with a date or wboogieticketsonsaleith a group of friends and a great time will be had by all.  Enjoy dancing the night away while the Chozen Few plays everyone’s favorite songs.  Heavy hors d’oeuvres and four drink tickets are provided in the ticket price, as well as a champagne toast at midnight!  If you are looking to spend the night there are hotel packages offered at the Sheraton and Courtyard, though those are going quickly.

Grab your tickets here before we sell out!

Looking for a Job? We’re Hiring!

by Gus Pine, General Manager of the Bayfront Convention Center

As the General Manager of the Bayfront Convention Center, I’m often asked about the biggest challenges I face in my position. It’s always fun to talk about my experiences over the years; like dealing with circus animals in your convention center for a week, or how to clean up a building after a 3,000 person paint and electronic dance party. In reality, the biggest challenge I face in a given year has always been finding and keeping dedicated customer service-oriented staff.

We often work when others are celebrating, and that can present a problem for people unwilling or unable to have a flexible work schedule. For others, however, the jobs we offer can be ideal. For students, semi-retirees, teachers or anyone looking to supplement their income with part-time work, we have lots of positions we are looking to fill to service our convention and show guests. We are proud of ForSaleSign-mockup10our service culture, so a positive, friendly approach is just as important when we look for a potential employee. Surprisingly, these people seem to be harder and harder to find in today’s competitive environment.

To address some of our challenges we’ve implemented several changes over the past year. For instance, we now offer a money incentive for any of our current employees that recommend a new hire that is able to make it through 90 days of employment. Any employee can refer an employee to work in the following departments: Operations, Food & Beverage, & Kitchen. That referred employee must work 300 hours in a 12 month period. We feel strongly that tomorrow’s star employee can come from today’s star employee. In addition, we are offering a new “on-call” designation of flexible employment that allows for people to utilize us as a second or even third job. And finally, we have begun to work more closely with our two hotels in order to share workers across or organization which is allowing some people to work as many hours they would like across our three properties.

In my role, I’ve come to realize that we will always be on the lookout for more people friendly employees. With our busy year ever coming up in 2019, this certainly won’t change anytime soon. Whether you’re a current employee who knows someone looking for part-time work or someone looking to supplement their own income, we are always looking to add customer-oriented people to our family!

To become a part of our team or to learn more about our recommendation incentives contact our Human Resources Department at dweaver@erieevents.com

Thanksgiving-time Events at Bayfront Convention Center

by Ariana Malizia, Event Coordinator

Festival of Trees 2018
Live ReindeerAs Thanksgiving creeps closer, our doors will be opening yet again for the annual Festival of Trees event.  This affair takes place the weekend following Thanksgiving, and has proven to be a door buster for children and adults alike. Guests who enter the building receive a ticket to choose their favorite decorative tree in the Grand Ballroom, and the winner is chosen at the conclusion of their final day, Sunday, November 25. The winner of 2017 was the NICU Nurses at Hamot. From meeting real reindeer, busting out all moves in Santa’s Dance Party room, writing letters to Soldiers and having Breakfast or Lunch with Santa, there’s never a dull moment in the day when you come to this festival!

Festival ticket prices:
-$6 for children and $10 for adults.
Breakfast/Lunch with Santa (includes tickets to the Festival)
-$15 for children and $20 for adults.

Hours:   Friday 10:00AM-8:00 PM
Saturday 10:00AM-8:00PM
Sunday 10:00AM-5:00PM

MMA Bayfront Brawl 2018
BoxingPrior to the Festival’s opening day (Friday November 23), another event will be hosted the evening before Thanksgiving; that being the annual MMA Bayfront Brawl. Tickets for this event are $30 for General Admission, $50 for VIP and $600 for a VIP table (tables are sold as a single unit, not by chair), which are located closest to the octagon. This bout is brought to you by Bizzarro Promotions and is another high-volume event during the month of November. Doors will open at 6:00PM and the fights begin promptly at 7:00PM. While you’re here, you can enjoy an all brands bar as well as our many offerings at the concessions stand!

How To Save On Tickets

by Ann Noble, Box Office Manager

Sell-more-tickets-for-eventEver wonder how you can purchase your tickets quick and easy? Possibly save a few bucks along the way? Let’s take a look at the ways you can purchase tickets to your favorite show!

The most important thing is to make sure you are purchasing directly from the venue or the official website! There are a lot of websites out there, but be sure to go to www.erieevents.com to get your tickets at the correct price. Other websites charge much more than the face value on the ticket, and if you misplace your ticket that you paid a small fortune for, well, we cannot help with that as we did not have anything to do with that transaction.  Tickets can also be purchased by calling us directly at (814) 452-4857 during regular business hours.

If you opt to purchase tickets online or by phone, additional convenience fees will apply. These fees range anywhere from $2.25 all the way up to $10.25 per ticket, and they are based on the ticket price.

Tickets for events at our facilities are available in person at the Erie Insurance Arena box office located at 809 French Street.  Here’s the advantage to buying your tickets in person: You only pay the face value of the ticket! No convenience fees, no additional handling fees — just the ticket price!  That can add up to a lot of savings! If you are able to visit our box office in person, there is parking located in the service apron on 8th Street.  Don’t worry if you see the signs posted as handicap-accessible parking, as it also states that this is parking for ticket pick up as well.

Whatever way you choose to purchase your tickets, rest assured you will get the best possible seats at the time at the fairest price. We look forward to seeing you at your favorite event soon!

Box Office Hours

Winter

Labor Day thru Memorial Day

Monday – Friday: 10:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m.

Saturday:  10:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. (non-event days)

10:00 a.m. until intermission (event days)

Sunday: Closed ( non-event days)

Noon until intermission (event days)

Summer

Monday – Friday: 10:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m.

Saturday & Sunday: Closed

Warner Theatre Continues Busy Schedule

by Barry Copple, Operations Manager of the Warner Theatre

Hello, Erie! In many ways, it’s been a busy time here at the Warner Theatre. In the last several months through October we have held  16 events varying from weddings, receptions, Philharmonic performances, private lobby events, a sold out Jerry Seinfeld show in August, REO Speedwagon concert, and Rumours Of Fleetwood Mac.

The next two months are even busier with 17 events including

  • The Erie Philharmonic Nov 3rd and Dec 1
  • The Broadway show “Menopause” on Nov 7th
  • Toby Mac concert on Nov 11th
  • The Warner Theatre Christmas Craft and Art Show Nov 24-25
  • The Broadway show “The Sound Of Music” Nov 29th
  • A Motown Christmas comes to Erie Sunday, Dec 2nd
  • The Beach Boys will perform their “Reason For The Season Tour”, Dec 5th
  • The annual Nutcracker Ballet will be held Dec 15-16
  • Little’s Dance Studio will perform their holiday performance Dec 22
  •  We end the year with Grace Church services, held  Dec 23rd 6 p.m. & 8 p.m., and Christmas Eve the 24th, 2 p.m. & 4 p.m.

So you can see how much exciting and diverse programing we have here at the Warner Theatre in Downtown Erie, Pa.

On a side note, Erie had a very exciting event in October, including a Presidential visit to the Erie Insurance Arena.  The Arena staff did a magnificent job pulling together such a huge undertaking in such a short few days. Hats off to all of them that made the event such a smooth and seamless day.  Even though this was an EIA event, the Warner Theatre did play a part in the logistics and planning. It was one to remember.

2018 was a good year, and 2019 is going to be an even better and more exciting year — not just from a programming stand point, but we are also scheduled to begin a long awaited final restoration and expansion of the Warner Theatre.  Plans are being finalized as we speak and you can be sure in the coming months and year, you will see and hear all about the wonderful things that are scheduled to take place as part of this construction project.  Erie will be very surprised!!  This, however, means we will have some down time for the Theatre in 2019 and 2020. This schedule is soon to be set, but the plan is for a finished building in Nov. 2020. I can’t wait! So “Get UP And Go Erie!” You have lots to choose from when it comes to entertainment in beautiful downtown Erie.

Until we talk again…Thank you, Erie.

BCC Takes Grades Seriously

by Lisa DiLuzio, Director of Marketing & Sales at Bayfront Convention Center

Even in my professional life, one of the things I value most is my report card.

Some things never change.

As part of my role as the Director of Marketing and Sales at the Bayfront Convention Center, I am responsible for ensuring great customer experiences. And really, there’s no better way of hearing back from our customers than with a customer survey.

Here’s how it works: We ask customers to rate us on a scale of 1-5 (with 5 being the best) on these categories: Overall Food, Overall Cleanliness, Overall Operations Department, Overall Service, and Overall Staff. Then, we total it up and get an Overall Score Average.

Getting all 5’s on our survey feels a lot like being a student and bringing home that report card with all A’s.

reportcardEach of our event coordinators follows up directly with each and every customer at the conclusion of the event verbally and then forwards a customer survey to complete that outlines details of the event’s experiences. The event coordinator has a monthly/quarter goal they’re held to, and the building as a whole is held accountable to a percentage goal.

But we don’t just want 5’s. We want to earn them.

These surveys assist the Bayfront Convention Center in making changes, enhancements, etc. to make experiences even better for all. It’s a great way to listen to what our customers are saying and looking for, and a constant working aide to help us continue to strive for the best.

Like in the classroom, we want to learn and grow as we earn our grades.

We’re baaaaaack!

by Brandon Boyd, Coordinator of Communications and Client Relations

What does Erie Events and an Uber driver have in common?

We’re both picking up!

Stick with me now. When you’re done groaning at that terrible joke, keep reading for the point I’m trying to make here: We’ve got a lot going on here at Erie Events.

With all the hoopla around the head honcho over, we can all breathe, but just a little bit — that’s because the events keep coming!

Right now as I type this, the 2018 Ice Breaker Tournament is about to begin. Providence plays Miami (OH) at 4 p.m. and Notre Dame plays Mercyhurst at 7:30 p.m. The losers of those two games play each other Saturday at 4 p.m. and the winners play at 7:30 in the Championship game.

If you’re reading this, the Ice Breaker Tournament has already come and gone. But the hockey hasn’t! The Otters are back in business and back on home ice beginning October 17.

If you’re not much of a hockey fan (and how dare you!), we have opportunities for just about everyone.

Looking for a different sport? The Erie BayHawks play an exhibition game against the Toronto Raptors 905 on October 26 (and, oh yeah, tickets are free!)

Looking for a family show? Check out Sesame Street Live! at the Warner Theatre on October 18.

Looking for some music? Come see Rumours of Fleetwood Mac at the Warner Theatre on October 23 or TobyMac on November 11.

Looking to laugh? Come see truTV’s Impractical Jokers at the Erie Insurance Arena on November 13.

Looking for an expo? How about the Liv Well 365 Expo on October 20 or the Her Expo (formerly For Women Only Expo) on October 27 and 28? Both are at the Bayfront Convention Center.

Looking for heart-pounding, rip-roaring action? Monster Jam will fit the bill! It’s at Erie Insurance Arena on November 9 and 10.

Looking to catch a Broadway show? The schedule is out and there are several upcoming shows!

Looking to explore art and crafts? Shocker, we have something for you. The Warner Winter Wonderland Art and Crafts Show takes place November 24 and 25.

When you combine allllllll this with the renovations happening at UPMC Park, the planned upgrade at the Warner Theatre, and the introduction of our new Bayfront Landing, it’s an exciting time to be in Erie.

And unlike that Uber driver, we don’t plan on dropping off any time soon.

President Trump Comes to Erie Insurance Arena

By Brandon Boyd, Communications and Client Relations Coordinator

Erie Events executive director Casey Wells walked into my office and shut the door.

He’s never done that before.

“This is it,” I thought. “It’s been a nice ride, but now I’m fired.”

I’ve been here about six months and I love this job. I love working for Erie Events and being able to contribute to all the happenings in Erie and making sure everything runs smoothly. I love the people, I love the atmosphere, and I love the ability I have to put my creative mind toward just about anything I want.

But enough about that. Back to my office.

My door is closed, but the floodgates of my mind are wide open. What could this possibly be about?

“I’m about to tell you something,” Casey started. “But it has to stay in this room and you can’t tell anyone.”

Sure, yeah, of course.

“The President of the United States is probably coming here next week.”

First, a sigh of relief. I get to keep my job! But then another thought – I’m really going to have to earn my paycheck with this one.

As we all know, just about any political topic in today’s society is met with a mountain of commentary. And as President Trump comes to visit Erie Insurance Arena on October 10, we’re sure to receive our fair share of that commentary.

First thing to say about that: Be civil. We understand politics are a delicate topic and we aren’t here to comment either way. We ask that if you choose to express your opinion in some way before, on, or after October 10, you do so in a civil manner.

trumperieSecond thought: If you’re looking for tickets, you won’t find them through us. All tickets must be requested through www.donaldjtrump.com. If you receive tickets, you will be able to enter Erie Insurance Arena on October 10 beginning at 4 p.m. The event starts at 7 p.m. Road closings and parking will be different than usual, so we’ll have that for you when it’s ready.

It’s not every day the sitting President makes his way to Erie. No matter which side you’re on, it’s a headline-worthy time for Erie.