When one thinks of large-scale events, most often Christine Tripoli name will be front and center. Her bio reads like a thesis university prep! Today, you will find Christine as the founder and president of the Looking Glass Event Group.
In a week, on September 17th Christine will be a part of the world-famous Diner en Blanc as it returns to New York City for its 8th year. Christine will certainly fit right into this years dream team made up of, Linda Davis, Bryer Davis, Kaitlin Davis Barry, Peter Kohlmann, and Christine Tripoli.
Downtown Magazine was able to slow Christine down for a few minutes to ask her a few questions
1. Getting into the event arena is not an easy feat, tell us how you got into the event industry and what was missing then, that your firm fills now?
I’ve been blessed to work on amazing large-scale events for more than two decades. I started out working on marketing and publicity for major New York City promotions and citywide events, which fostered my love for the high energy and excitement, as well as the challenge of producing them.
In the late 90s, I got an opportunity to work for the Times Square Alliance when Peter Kohlmann (then the VP of Special Events of Times Square Alliance, and now head of Peko Productions and co-host of Diner en Blanc) invited me to come work with him on events such as New Year’s Eve, Broadway on Broadway, Taste of Times Square and the granddaddy of them all, the Times Square Millennium Celebrations.
After my time there, I produced many large NYC festivals and events and eventually overseeing all the NY/NJ Host Committee Events for the 2014 Super Bowl. That was a once-in-a-lifetime adventure! Shortly after the Superbowl, I created my company the Looking Glass Group. I think what I bring to every event is this real understanding of how to make events of any size be intimate. We work hard to give opportunities for guests to build an emotional connection event by creating unique moments that are unique and memorable while still paying attention to both the details and the big picture of what we are working to carry out.
2. When and why did Looking Glass choose to partner with DEB?
In 2016, Diner en Blanc International was looking for new hosts for New York City. This event had all the things love: It’s unique, huge in scope, and it really celebrates the diversity and creativity of our great city. In creating a partnership with the event’s Co-Hosts, Peter Kohlmann of Peko Productions and Linda Davis and Kaitlin Davis of the Davis Group, we have been able to lean on our many years of combined experience and our varied backgrounds to bring the best of what we each have to offer. This is our first time back since 2016, and we are very excited about what we have planned for this year.
3. As the founder of Looking Glass, what gets you excited about this particular event Diner en Blanc?
I named my company “Looking Glass Events Group” because I loved the idea of transporting people into space and time that surprises and delights — just like Alice did when she stepped through her looking-glass. I think our team is going to do that again this year. We are taking one of New York City’s great spaces, celebrating it and creating an unforgettable evening for more than 6000 people.
4. What in your eyes makes DEB so extraordinary?
The sheer size and scope of the event, of course, an awesome thing to experience. Watching the excited guests coming from all across the city at one time, all dressed in white, all excited for an amazing night and then assembling on site — is truly mind-boggling as it’s happening. But what I really love about this event is that people from all walks of life, of all ethnicities, of all backgrounds, come together for a joyful purpose. It truly represents the beautiful diversity of New York City.
“Big and Breathtaking Two Words to Describe Diner en Blanc 2018”
5. Your career reads like a novel in the event industry, what keeps your creative juices flowing?
Every event is unique and every day is different. I love taking on new projects and working closely with my clients to think outside of the box and give their guests something that they haven’t experienced before. Staying abreast of what’s new in the arts scene (in music and live performance, and immersive theater in particular) also provides inspiration for me.
6. What is the most difficult when planning an event this large?
I think the most challenging aspect for an event like this is managing the level of detail required on all fronts and having a plan for any scenario that could potentially happen — all while keeping the guest experience in mind.
7. What can we expect differently this year under yours and fellow teammates guidance?
As this event is always held in a different place, I think it’s safe to say that this year’s location will offer a very different experience from any of the years past.
8. Although you cannot, give away this years site, can you give us one word to describe this year’s epic site?
I have two words: Big and breathtaking
9. Give our readers just one tip on how to create the best event?
My best tip is to think specifically about how you want someone to feel at your event, and that everything you have prepared should result in the guest experiencing that feeling from the moment they arrive at the moment they leave. This is true for any event.