Just An Online Minute... The Pearl Awards Are Custom Content's Meat And Potatoes
The 2010 Pearl Awards, The Water Club, New York
November 13, 2010
I love content. Glossy, slippery, gossipy mags, thick, wordy, intellectual pubs, foodie, veggie, squatty manuals, quit and witty newsletters, fancy tip filled blogs, gorgeous sprawling photo spreads. I love 'em all. The Custom Content Council loves them, too, which is why they continued their tradition of the Pearl Awards, bestowing 175 of them to 50 companies last night at The Water Club.
Getting to The Water Club is a bit like navigating a labrynth. It doesn't help when I type the wrong address into hopstop and wonder why I'm heading west when the restaurant is on the east. Once I got myself directionally sound, I found myself in an unsavory situation. The end of 30th Street is not where you want to find yourself in the dark, alone. There are bunch of those temporary trailers that you'd find behind an overflowing school or on construction sites. Prime property for would-be muggers and underwear thieves.
And then I saw the FDR.
Behind it, I saw The Water Club.
In front of me, I saw no clear path to the restaurant.
"I cannot afford to get hit by a car tonight,"I texted my date for the evening, AttentionUSA's Karen Ram, who was also en route. "How the hell do people on foot get to this place?!" I grumbled as I made my way up to a 34th Street, which offered me a cross walk into yet another dark unsavory Manhattan armpit. At least I got to walk by the helipads, with their whirlybirds readying for flight.
The cocktail hour was already in full swing, even though I arrived 15 minutes late due to my NYC gauntlet. People like Mara Hess and Dana Brink of Hanley Wood Marketing, Jackie Jordan of The Sherwin-Williams Company, Kevin Newman, Guiv Rahbar, and Mike Russell of Meredith Integrated Marketing, Janice Miller of Time Inc. Content Solutions, Junta42's Joe Pulizzi, Jason Comis of Bravo Digital, Kamil Dlutko of Novimedia Content Publishing (which he just sold!), Marcie Avram of Rodale Custom Content & Marketing, and Rodale's newest recruit (fresh off The Knot) Melissa Mariola were milling about, enjoying the bar, snatching up stuffed mushrooms, crispy shrimp, and seared tuna.
Dinner was fantastic, made even better by my tablemates Samir Husni from the University of Mississippi and his wife. I met Husni two years ago at the Pearl Awards, where his date that time was his lovely daughter. Fun little fact, one of Husni's students was the famous football Cinderella Michael Oher from The Blindside, who now plays for the Baltimore Ravens. Husni and I relived some of our favorite moments from two years ago, including a sauced-up Jonah Bloom. Ah, that fond memory will live on forever.
Our table was full of winners. For real. Lisa Engert, Kim Evans, Cherry Kam and Jaci Ponzon from Pace Communications won multiple awards, meaning Jaci Ponzon got quite the workout, running to the stage and back, and probably had a mini heart attack when I dropped one of her awards no the floor for her.
The hosts for the evening were Cat Greenleaf of "Talk Stoop with Cat Greenleaf" and Abe Peck, Professor Emeritus and Director of B2B Communication at Northwestern University, both bubbly and fun, making 175 award distribution pain-free. Between awards, our little house band played, making Cat and Abe bounce around on stage. Abe Peck will not be seen on DWTS any time soon.
Here is the full list of winners, if you're curious!
Alas, after stuffing myself with a perfectly cooked filet mignon, a twice-baked pesto potato, and heaping scoops of mashed potatoes (potato explosion!) I had to leave mid-ceremony to cover another party. A party where the clipboard girl must have skipped over the "do not call guests bitches after you direct them to press check-in" tip in her "you have a very important job!" manual.