Though the world has changed with the onslaught of the Coronavirus just two months ago, in many ways it seems like it has been an eternity since we were able to go to the theatre, eat in a restaurant, experience a basketball or baseball game or visit and hug family and friends. Life truly has changed but we are all hesitant to complain to any great degree since if you are reading this, you are one of the lucky ones who have survived this deadly interlude of our 21st century communal experience. Social distancing, face masks, PPE and 70 thousand deaths and 33 million jobs lost are topics we never contemplated just 60 days ago.
We have the option of paralysis; just lamenting our current situation or purpose; investigate how to proceed and find a reason for continuing as we move forward. We at NAC have chosen PURPOSE. We are cognizant that the concession and hospitality community is experiencing enormous pain and stress currently. It has been a perfect storm of public health restrictions, financial distress and consumer wariness that has hit the NAC community and unlike other crises and weather occurrences of the past, it is extremely difficult to see the light at the end of the tunnel.
With the help of NAC Membership and Leadership, NAC has moved forward with purpose to assist our industry with added benefits and value. Unlike other organizations, we don’t have the financial means to provide philanthropic assistance but in our own small way we have attempted to provide the membership with information and contacts that hopefully will make all more competitive and adaptable to the changed environment.
Note the following activities:
-Twice weekly membership conversations via old school conference calling that has allowed members to share their stories and seek advice while also providing experiences.
-Concession Profession, our annual printed magazine has become a digital edition available to all the membership in a relevant and timely fashion rather than waiting on desks of those who currently might be working from home. READ IT NOW!
-A Listing of NAC Member Vendors that can assist in products and services needed to reopen or maintain theatres and other venues during these very challenging times. Links were sent in a direct email blast to members.
-The NAC Government Relations Committee continues to oversee Legislative and Regulatory issues that affect the membership even more so during this period.
-Thanks to the support of our numerous and generous sponsors (Royal Corporation, Coca-Cola, Gold Medal, Ferrara Candy, Vistar, Pepsi, Load King, The Hershey Company, and Ricos Products Company) we will soon make available podcasts to our members on the topic of Multi-Generational Labor as a refashioning of our Regional Seminar Series. Details will be released shortly.
-Weekly Reopening Calls where Operators and Suppliers can connect and discuss best processes, and services and products needed to move forward.
-Extensive interchange with NAC Membership and Industry Leadership on how to proceed on the 2020 NAC Concession & Hospitality EXPO originally scheduled for July 27-31 at the Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista in Orlando, Florida. We have investigated all options including conducting the EXPO during its original timeframe, postpone to later in the year, produce a virtual version of the EXPO or cancel the show entirely. We are currently in negotiations with the hotel and we anticipate an announcement late next week or early during the week of May 19. We need to acknowledge that what we have had in the past may not be replicated due to our changing times and public health mandates. Obviously much more to come.
-Check-in member telephone calls are being made by NAC staff just to touch base and to assure all that NAC is here to help if we can.
Like many of our members, finances are tight and the NAC staff is certainly doing more with less; the team is here to assist in any way possible. All of us have invested enormous amounts of time and energy to this industry and we pledge to continue to do so in the future.
On behalf of Barbara, Brenda and Chris, we thank you for your continued support and dedication and we look forward to seeing all of you in person whenever that is possible. Be safe and healthy.Daniel C. Borschke, FASAE, CAE
Executive Vice President
National Association of Concessionaires
May 11, 2020