RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – The Raleigh Convention Center and Duke Energy Center for Performing Arts are among the local venues that have canceled events due to concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The biggest challenge is the rapid change of everything,” said Kerry Painter, general manager of the Raleigh Convention Center. “We think we’re ready to go, and then it turns out that a sponsor cancels, or a different state decides to have a travel ban or company. That’s when attendance starts to get affected.”
The Playthrough Gaming Convention along with Blue Cross and Lenovo employee events canceled before they started, but presenters at the Boat Show were all set up before being told their event was shutting down.
“It’s about a third of our revenue for the year, so not having an event like this would take its toll,” said Cameron Richardson from Southtown Water Sports.
With so much of his bottom line contingent on a canceled conference, Cameron Richardson is scrambling to figure out what comes next.
“There is a cause for worry,” said Richardson. “I just hope the government takes proper steps to ensure everybody’s safety. You know it is what it is. We can’t control some of these things sometimes.”
While the Raleigh Convention Center is working with local hotels to reschedule clients for a later date there is still one issue.
“We don’t know what will happen from one day to the next,” said Painter.
The City of Raleigh both owns and operates the RedHat Amphitheatre and Coastal Credit Union Music Park, but at this time they haven’t made any changes to their schedule because their seasons haven’t opened yet.
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