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Climate Pledge Arena Hosts VenuesNow Conference 2021

Climate pledge arena

VenuesNow’s Flagship Event to Be Held in Conjunction with the Opening of Climate Pledge Arena on October 21-22

SEATTLE, Wash., August 11, 2021 — Following three successful runs in Los Angeles and New York, Oak View Group (OVG) and Climate Pledge Arena announced today that VenuesNow Conference (VNC4) is coming to Seattle for 2021. The flagship event of VenuesNow magazine has built a reputation as the most compelling and thought-provoking gathering in the international sports and live entertainment facilities industry.

Taking place Oct. 21 and 22, the highly respected symposium for professionals in the sports and live entertainment venue industry will be held to coincide with the opening of the most progressive, responsible, and sustainable arena in the world. Reflecting the higher purpose of Climate Pledge Arena, first net-Zero Carbon certified arena in the world, VNC 2021 will explore the global sports and live entertainment venue industry through the lens of sustainability and saving the planet.

While many of the panels at VNC 2021 will include discussion of sustainability, topics will continue to take on leading-edge innovation in the world of live event venues, with a deep focus on sanitization, security, and sustainability. Additional event programming will highlight relationships between touring content, teams and owners, brand partners, venue operators, and other key stakeholders serving the facilities industry, from the club to stadium level, while also examining advances in technology, finance, ticketing, sponsorships, concessions, design and development, gaming, inclusivity, and immersive experiences.

As a signatory and supporter of the Climate Pledge, OVG’s VenuesNow will also curate environmentally and socially conscious content as it relates to the facilities and communities serviced by the global venue industry. Attendees will also be among the first to exclusively tour the $1 billion Climate Pledge Arena and view the venue’s industry-leading features.

Speakers at VenuesNow Conference 2021 will include Jake Crumbine, head of global influence, Impossible Foods; Justin Toman, head of sports marketing, PepsiCo; Anneliese Mesilati, head of brand activation & sponsorships, UBS; Jason McLennan, partner and CEO, McLennan Design; Amanda Mann, SVP Rose Quarter operations and general manager, Portland Trail Blazers & Moda Center; Alex Rodrigo, SVP and general manager, Golden1 Center; Jennifer Kearney, founder and president, Gotham Energy 360; Amy Latimer, president, TD Garden and chief development officer, Delaware North; Ed Bosco, PE, LEED AP BD+C, managing principal, ME Engineers; Dr. K. Elizabeth Hawk, president, Ampersand Intelligence; and Akmal Ali, founder & CEO, Aluma.

In addition to keynote Q&As, roundtables, and case studies, panels at VNC4 will include of-the-moment sessions with topics ranging from “The Future is Bright for the Live Biz: But Where Are We Right Now?” and “Can Sports and Entertainment Marketing Create Meaningful Programs that are Good for Communities?,” to “International Venue Development: The Global Perspective on Sustainability and Navigating a Post-Covid Landscape” and “Sustainable Touring: How To Tour Green Without Sacrificing the Green.”

Regarded as unique in the venue industry for its focus on positive disruption and innovation in the public assembly facilities space, past speakers including Adam Silver, Ari Emanuel, Coran Capshaw, Rick Fox, Jerry Bruckheimer, James Dolan, Doc McGhee, Jerry Jacobs, Jr., Pete Vlastelica, Carl Mittleman, Deepen Parikh, Carole Kinzel, Gerry Barad, Angela Ruggiero, Peter Guber, Kim Pegula, Bruce Miller, Jeanne Bonk, Bill Bratton, Richard Browne, Nicole Feld, Walter Frye, Jennifer van Dijk, Tim Romani, Joe Belliotti, Mike Tomon, Louis Messina, Marcie Allen, and, along with OVG leadership in Tim Leiweke and Irving Azoff, no other event in the industry attracts as many primary influencers and those who impact it. The curated attendance of the VenuesNow Conference is made up of C-level stakeholders in sports and live entertainment, fostering the highest level of dialogue and one-of-a-kind networking opportunities. 

“Presenting VenuesNow Conference 2021 in Seattle to coincide with the opening of the new Climate Pledge Arena, the first carbon-neutral arena in the world, provides us a unique opportunity to discuss the role of the sports and live entertainment venue industry as it relates to sustainability and our shared responsibility in saving the planet,” said Leiweke, OVG CEO, calling VNC ’21, “the most important conference we’ll ever host.”

Beyond an opportunity for the industry to reconvene after 18 months, Leiweke stressed the urgency around “sustainability, sanitization, safety, and content,” he continued.

“I believe we, as an industry and society, are at a critical moment for our Earth and sustainability. We all know sanitization is the challenge of the moment. At the same time, with the emergence of ‘lone wolf’ threats, we’ve never been more challenged for safety and security,” Leiweke said. “This is the moment in time where we must come together to address, discuss, debate, and learn on these issues. This is the most important conference in my career, and I believe we will create a conference where everyone who comes will feel the same way.”

Additionally, CAA ICON, the world’s leading owners’ representative and strategic management consulting firm for public and private sports and entertainment facility owners/operators, professional franchises and leagues, is the presenting sponsor for VenuesNow Conference 2021. The conference is also presented in association with Delaware North, the global leader in hospitality management & food service management.

Additional news regarding the speakers and other information regarding VNC4 will be made public shortly. For the most current VNC4 information, visit

In addition to VenuesNow Conference, OVG’s Media & Conferences Division also produces Pollstar Live!, inclusive of Production Live! and the Pollstar Awards. Pollstar Live!, the world’s largest gathering of concert industry professionals, is set for February 2022 in Los Angeles.


Oak View Group (OVG), VenuesNow and Pollstar’s parent company, is a global sports and entertainment company founded by Tim Leiweke and Irving Azoff in 2015. OVG is focused on being a positive disruption to business as usual in the sports and live entertainment industry and currently has eight divisions across four global offices (Los Angeles, New York, London, and Philadelphia). OVG is leading the redevelopment and operations of Climate Pledge Arena at Seattle Center as well as leading arena development projects for UBS Arena in Belmont Park, NY; Moody Center in Austin, TX; Coachella Valley Arena in Palm Desert, CA; Enmarket Arena in Savannah, GA; and Co-op Live in Manchester, UK. OVG Global Partnerships, a division of OVG, is the sales and marketing arm responsible for selling across all OVG Arena Development projects.


VenuesNow (founded in 2002 as Venues Today) is the leading trade publication covering live entertainment venues across the globe, serving managers, owners, operators, and bookers of arenas, amphitheaters, stadiums, performing arts centers, clubs, theaters, and convention centers. VenuesNow delivers industry-leading analysis and data-driven content geared to helping venues and their industry partners operate more effectively and profitably. VenuesNow’s box office charts, powered by Pollstar’s unsurpassed data, offer timely intel — truly unique and unparalleled in entertainment trade media. Subscribe to VenuesNow at

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