Posts tagged with "covid"

Nursing Home Staff Shortages

Amidst the perseverance of the COVID-19 pandemic, the healthcare industry has taken a massive blow. There are intense staffing shortages in the field, and the public is suffering from these scarcities. The Washington Post gave a detailed report on these worsening staff deficiencies, more specifically in long term care facilities.

Nursing homes tend to lessen the stress on hospitals as recovered patients typically move there after being released. Without proper staffing, though, facilities have not been able to take in patients from hospitals. A specific example of this misfortune stems from the Terrace View nursing home in Buffalo, New York. The home is currently not running at full capacity, and there are up to 22 beds not being used due to lack of staff.

The Washington Post article elaborates on this disaster, highlighting another facility affected. “That means some fully recovered patients in the adjacent Erie County Medical Center must stay in their hospital rooms, waiting for a bed in the nursing home. Which means some patients in the emergency department, who should be admitted to the hospital, must stay there until a hospital bed opens up. The emergency department becomes stretched so thin that 10 to 20 percent of arrivals leave without seeing a caregiver — after an average wait of six to eight hours, according to the hospital’s data.”

Many long-term care facilities across the country are facing these same troubles. The American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL) found 58% of nursing homes are cutting down on arrivals, again, because of the shortage of staff members.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) found that 425,000 long term care workers left the industry since February 2020. Though other industries have seen economic growth since the onset of the pandemic, nursing homes have not had the same luck. “Remarkably, despite the horrific incidents of death and illness in nursing homes at the outset of the pandemic, more staff departures have come during the economic recovery. As restaurants and shops reopened and hiring set records, nursing homes continued to bleed workers, even as residents returned.”

These troubles are heightened in more rural areas. The article, too, depicts the story of Diakonos Group in Medford, Oklahoma, that had to shut down since there was simply not enough staff. The facility provided care for patients with mental health needs, but after the pandemic started, they found that their staff had endured too much. Diakonos Group CEO Scott Pilgrim explained that although the business offered a raise in hourly wages, bonuses and overtime, employees continued to leave, and they could not withstand these absences.

AHCA/NCAL urges lawmakers to work with the long term care division of healthcare to fix this staffing crisis and devote resources to employ caregivers. As hospitals continue to be directly affected by this catastrophe, change must be made as soon as possible. AHCA/NCAL encourages Congress to take action and ease these tensions placed on both hospitals and long term care facilities.

Allison Christensen for use by 360 Magazine

Virtual Meeting w/ Biden × Xi

By: Conan Zhang

US President Biden and China’s Chairman, Xi Jinping had their first virtue summit on November 15th. This summit was set towards the improvement of bilateral cooperation but there was no concrete action after three and a half hours of the conference.

The summit had its focus on a wide range of issues, including human rights, climate change, and the economy. However, among all the topics, the future of Taiwan has been one of the major focuses of the globe.

Since the uncertainty of the global pandemic and political concern, Xi has canceled all his traveling plans since January 2020. The two leaders have spoken through telephone twice this year, nevertheless this time they were intended to lead a more exhaustive discussion of the previous issues.

Although the summit was taken place virtually, the place was carefully selected. Xi along with his allies was at the East Hall in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, Biden and his team were at the Roosevelt Room at the White House.

During the conference, each side has mentioned their dispute which concerns them the most. While the disservice has been deeply rooted which offered little room for compromise. Although Xi called Mr. Biden “my old friend” at the beginning of the summit and used a metaphor that compared the two superpowers to ships that navigate together in the ocean’s wind, under the water, there is disagreement and conflict which is hard to be resolved.

Spotlight focus: Taiwan Affairs

Taiwan affairs are always the most significant issue among China and US. The White House and Xinhua News Agency, the mouthpiece of the Chinese Communist Party, have individually quoted Biden and Xi’s speeches, which demonstrated their respectively different opinions.

According to a statement issued by the White House, Biden said that “the United States is still committed to the ‘One China policy, which is implemented under the guidance of the “Taiwan Relations Act”, the three joint communiqués and the six guarantees.”

While on the other hand, Xinhua News Agency quoted Biden as saying, “The U.S. government is committed to pursuing the long-term and consistent one China’ policy and does not support Taiwan independence.

Despite the fact that Xi Jinping always mentioned Taiwan in the past, This time his words are tougher, and more sounds like a warning. He warned that “Taiwan independence” is “very dangerous. It is playing with fire, and you will burn yourself if you play with fire.” He emphasized that the one-China principle and the three Sino-US joint communiqués are the foundation of China-US relations.

Seek common ground while reserving differences

It is impossible to solve the enormous divisions that occur among the world’s two superpowers through just one meeting. While the virtual summit between Xi Jinping and Joe Biden obviously has removed the concern whether China-US would spiral into a new Cold War. The relationship is rebounding from the Trump era which there was a great misunderstanding. Cooperation of the world is urgently needed, since the COVID pandemic, economic recession, and climate crisis.

Although there is dissension in many ways, the communication was structural and honest, The fact that the summit has taken place for almost four hours is a clear sign that both leaders are putting a great amount of effort to achieve substantive and constructive results. They showed a strong desire to eventually find a way to reach a consensus. And Biden in his word said that we need to have “commonsense guardrails” and prevent the China-US competition from “veering into conflict”.

Conclusion

China-US collaboration and benign competition are appreciated by the world. History has witnessed the benefits of both superpowers working together from the Financial crisis of 2007–2008 to the joint declaration on enhanced climate actions announced recently in Glasgow. Just like what Xi mentioned at the begging of the summit, “Humanity lives in a global village, and we face multiple challenges together. China and the US need to increase communication and co-operation.”

For The Love of Comic Con 

By: Rodney Ramlochan × Elle Grant × Vaughn Lowery

New York City’s Comic Con is a key annual fan event dedicated to Western comics, graphic novels, anime, manga, video games, movies, television and more. First held in 2006, this classic event was canceled last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic, devastating fans who look forward to this mainstay of popular culture. Yet this year, Comic Con made its triumphant return, though it looked a little different in the attendance of both its exhibitors and fans. 360 MAGAZINE got the full scoop from well-versed fan Rodney Ramlochan on how this event has changed. He offers comments on the good, the bad, the Covid, and the in between for 360 readers. Read Ramlochan’s full testimony below:

To say that I love New York Comic Con is an understatement. For over a decade, as a pop-culture geek, I’ve enjoyed the fantastic guests, panels, original art, unique exhibitors, industry merchants, and one-of-kind exclusives. It has always been one of my favorite events to cover, and as a die-hard fan, I was deeply disappointed that the pandemic caused last year’s convention to go virtual. However, I was thrilled to hear that the event was coming back in person this year. Since much had changed over the past eighteen months, I thought it would be cool to experience the event as a fan rather than cover it as press. I also wanted to test-drive ReedPop’s Metaverse membership for ordering in-person tickets and focus on the overall fan experience, including Covid safety precautions and notable differences between this year and cons from yesteryear. Here are my post-Comic Con impressions. 

I purchased tickets a few months ago in July using the MetaVerse presale process. Of course, this was before the uptick caused by the Delta variant strain. I didn’t expect any issues with purchasing online as I’ve never really had a problem buying 4-day or single-day passes in the past. Still, I was interested in trying out the new Metaverse Membership that gives you first access to NYCC badges, photo ops & autographing tickets. My mission this year was to get both an autograph and photograph with William Shatner, epic space captain of the Starship Enterprise and now a real-life astronaut. In addition to getting first dibs on NYCC in-person tickets, the Superfan membership allows you to buy MCM Comic Con, Emerald City Comic Con, and C2E2 tickets. You can also get paid digital experiences, exclusive access to video content and celebrity panels, access to exclusive NYCC merchandise online. 

The Superfan Membership process was relatively seamless. I signed up at the end of June using the Metaverse Membership email and bought tickets using a dedicated link on my profile page within a few days. I purchased single day passes for each day of the convention, and I was contacted for the opportunity to purchase photo ops and autographs in addition at the end of September. Overall, I’d say the membership was worth it. It’s perfect for the fan who would rather have a more significant window of time to purchase tickets. Outside of remembering to click on the notification reminder emails and follow the presale, photo ops, and autographs links, ordering is straightforward.  There are no worries about getting tickets for the exact days you want to attend. If you are good with the allotted time frame afforded by the standard ordering process, then paying for the Superfan membership may not be beneficial at this time. However, I do wonder what the future holds for purchasing tickets in the future. Suppose the Superfan method of buying in-person tickets becomes more popular. Will it impact the standard order process and make it more challenging to obtain single-day passes post-pandemic?  Only time will tell. 

As far as Covid safety protocols, enforcement, and logistics, the ReedPop and the Javitz Center team did a great job managing this. Before attending, I was uncertain why New York Comic Con needed a partnership with CLEAR Health Pass. Especially since vaccination proof was a requirement for attending and could be validated using vaccine cards and existing apps like the NY Excelsior Pass. In hindsight, standardizing the application that everyone uses for admission was a smart move. At the very least, it streamlined the process and expedited entry for most. I picked up my green ReedPop vaccine wristband at the Javitz Crystal Palace a few nights before opening. It took me less than 5 minutes to show the CLEAR app and retrieve the band, and in many ways, this process foreshadowed the overall feel and attendance for the convention. NYC began requiring proof of vaccinations in early September, and the event was following suit. The mandate may have impacted attendance, as I read many social media comments from individuals that stated they wanted to return or sell their tickets because they didn’t know the vaccine would be mandated before purchasing. But, as a whole, most people in attendance complied with the requirements. I was there all four days and only encountered two individuals not wearing masks on the main floor. I didn’t notice security enforcing the mask mandate, but I did hear that a vendor and few individuals had been removed from the showroom floor for not following the rules.  At my William Shatner autograph and photo ops sessions, plexiglass partitions protected Shatner and the fans. Partitions were used at all reserved signings and photo op sessions. According to ReedPop, 150,000 paid in-person attendees were at the event this past weekend compared to 250,000 in previous years. Even with 100,00 fewer people, this was the largest indoor in-person event held in New York since 2019, showing a great evolution from where things were at the start of the pandemic. It was good to see that all of the proper safety protocols were in place. 

One of the most significant differences between this year’s Comic Con and past shows was the notable absence of large exhibitors like Disney, Marvel, DC, Image, Sony, Amazon, SYFY, and distributors like Funko and Midtown Comics. Of course, it didn’t come as a surprise, as we had been receiving no-show notices practically every week leading up to the event. I’m sure it deterred some folks from attending, but I think it helped provide a unique experience for those who did. It minimized the crowd and offered other smaller exhibitors an opportunity to showcase their properties and spend more time with fans. As a result, I spent a lot more time than I would typically have at smaller booths. For example, I met the great folks at Plunderlings, a boutique toy line presenting a fresh take on fantasy universes from a Caribbean perspective. Although some of the major players weren’t present, there was an excellent turnout for anime fans from Toei Animation, Funimation, VIZ Media, and Tamashii Nations. Without having to compete for floor space, it seemed as if their exhibits doubled in size. If you were a fan of these companies, it was probably the first time in years that you could casually stroll through their exhibits without waiting in line. Although it was less crowded, the show floor did not feel empty. As expected, Saturday and Sunday saw an increase in volume of attendees, but nothing compared to the previous years. 

One of the most extraordinary changes this year was the unveiling of the new Javits Center expansion project. It took a few minutes to figure out exactly where floors 4 and 5 were, but once you found them in the building adjacent to the old center, you were treated to the fantastic skyline and river views on the way up to the panel rooms and the new Empire Stage. There were a few blockbuster live panels, including Ghostbuster and The Boys; however, many panels like Sandman Act II and Wheel of Time were pre-recorded videos. I did sit in on the Sandman panel, but post-viewing, I felt a bit underwhelmed – watching a video of writer Neil Gaiman, audiobook director Dirk Maggs, actor James McCoy (who voices the title character), and actor/filmmaker Kevin Smith (who voices Merv Pumpkinhead) was not the same as seeing them in person. In addition, ReedPop introduced a new reservation system for the larger panels instead of the “badge tap-in” process used in the past. I have mixed feelings about this, as it didn’t appear that anyone’s reservations for the panels were being checked. It may have been because there was excess capacity remaining at the events I attended. However, I will note that the folks at the Tamashii Nations booth to purchase their exclusive Super Saiyan God Super Saiyan Son Goku figure did check for reservations. 

Overall, expanding the panels to the new venue resulted in two significant outcomes. First, it allowed more space to return to smaller fan-focused panels, which featured creators interacting with their fandom instead of pitching major studio events.  Second, moving the panels out of the main building allowed for Artist Alley to take back a prominent role I felt it had lost over the past few years. This year, the Alley was front and center, featuring principal mainstays like Fabian Nicieza, Chris Claremont, Rob Leifeld, and Scott Synder amongst many others. I especially enjoyed chatting with Ben Bishop, one of the key artists on TMNT’s The Last Ronin. 

Undoubtedly, many of this year’s Comic Con changes resulted from how best to host an event during a pandemic, but many of the changes also focused on improving the fan experience. As a result, NYCC 2021 felt more like the NYCC of 2011, but with a few notable improvements. Creators were able to connect more with their fandoms, fans were able to stop and appreciate exhibitors and artists more, and ReedPop unveiled a few new processes to streamline crowd control and help fans maximize their time at the event. It wasn’t perfect, but as a fan, it exceeded my expectations, and I’m even more looking forward to a pandemic-free NYCC next year. 

360 MAGAZINE covers NYCC
360 MAGAZINE covers NYCC
360 MAGAZINE covers NYCC.
Rodney Ramlochan attends NYCC on behalf of 360 MAGAZINE and meets William Shatner.
Art by Mina Tocalini for use by 360 Magazine

Scientists Mapping Next Pandemic

An international team of scientists has created a powerful new resource to speed the development of vaccines and treatments to battle the next pandemic.

University of Virginia School of Medicine researcher Wladek Minor, PhD, and collaborators in China and Poland have developed an Internet information system, called virusMED, that lays out all we know about the atomic structure and potential vulnerabilities of more than 800 virus strains from 75 different virus families, including SARS-CoV-2, influenza, Ebola and HIV‑1. Several of the collaborators, including the lead investigator, Heping Zheng, are former students and members of Minor’s lab at UVA. 

This new panorama of the proteins of potential threats will help scientists respond quickly and effectively against the next pathogen poised to wreak havoc on humanity. Minor and his collaborators compare the resource to Google Maps, in that it organizes and annotates major points of interest on a virus that scientists can use as a roadmap in drug and vaccine development.

“The battle with COVID-19 is not over yet, but we cannot wait to start preparing for the next pandemic. VirusMED is a step towards an advanced information system that brings together researchers with diverse expertise to tackle complex biomedical challenges,” said Minor, the Harrison Distinguished Professor of Molecular Physiology and Biological Physics at UVA. “The information contained in virusMED will help viral researchers from many disciplines, especially those working on drug design or anti-viral therapies. We provide novel structural analysis and integrate pertinent information from various resources to provide a comprehensive picture of the proteins’ most important and vulnerable regions.”

Virus Hotspots

By quickly unlocking the SARS-CoV-2 virus mechanism of action, scientists were able to develop safe and effective vaccines for COVID-19. Minor’s new database aims to put that type of critical information at scientists’ fingertips in one convenient location.

VirusMED contains extensive information on virus species and strains, hosts, viral proteins and antibodies, as well as drugs that have already been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, among other important scientific data. The researchers call the points of interest on a virus its “hotspots,” and these hotspots make for strong starting points for drug and vaccine development.

“One of the most promising strain-indifferent antibody therapies developed for the treatment of COVID-19 used this type of information to improve upon a unique antibody isolated from a survivor who was infected by the SARS virus back in 2003,” said David Cooper, PhD, research faculty in Minor’s lab. “People who are surprised by rapid drug and vaccine design don’t realize that researchers today are building upon decades of previous research.”

One of virusMED’s major advantages is that it brings together the extant knowledge about viruses in one location, Minor said. Previously, that data was spread across multiple resources and often “siloed” so that it was not easily accessible. With virusMED, researchers can browse the information by virus or by their hotspot of interest.

The free and accessible database can be found HERE.

“One of the goals of my lab is to make tools that other scientists can use. We look at the forest and find ways to help others focus on the trees,” Minor said. “Resource generation is not glamorous, but the ultimate goal of science is to make life better. One of the anonymous peer-reviewers of the paper claimed they instantly became an enthusiastic user of the system. We expect virusMED to really make a difference.”

Findings Published

The researchers have published their findings in the scientific IUCr Journal. The work will be featured on the journal’s cover. The research team consisted of HuiHui Zhang, Pei Chen, Haojie Ma, Magdalena Woinska, Dejian Liu, Cooper, Guo Peng, Yousong Peng, Lei Deng, Minor and Zheng. .

To keep up with the latest medical research news from UVA, subscribe to the Making of Medicine blog.

Disneyland illustrated by Mina Tocalini for 360 MAGAZINE.

Rockefeller Productions – Winnie The Pooh

Rockefeller Productions Announces Safety Protocol For their Record-Breaking Disney Winnie The Pooh The New Musical Stage Adaptation 

Performances begin at Theatre Row on October 21, 2021 

A leader in family entertainment, Rockefeller Productions announces one of the country’s most thorough and considerate safety protocols for their highly anticipated new musical, Disney Winnie The Pooh, beginning performances on October 21, 2021, at Theatre Row. The new protocols will ensure the safety of every audience member and performer.

Keeping in line with current CDC and industry safety standards, all patrons will be required to wear a mask inside the theatre, and every person 12+ will be required to show proof of vaccine before entering the theatre.  Those under 12 years old will be required to show evidence of a negative PCR COVID test within 3 days of the performance or a negative COVID rapid antigen test from a doctor or testing site within 6 hours of performance.

To make it easier for families to return to the theatre, Rockefeller Productions has partnered with Dr. Karen Thornton to provide free rapid on-site testing, good within six hours of the test. The testing van will be located directly outside of Theatre Row (410 W 42nd Street) up to 1.5 hours before curtain time. It will be equipped with trained nurses to administer the non-invasive swab rapid test with results in 15 minutes. Parents should arrive at least thirty minutes before curtain time to ensure a negative test before entering the theatre. Rockefeller Productions will also provide activities for young people to assist families while they wait for the results.

Additionally, Rockefeller Productions will be introducing Seating Bubbles during certain performances distancing family units throughout the theatre. Finally, in its most comprehensive and definitive safety measure, they are also offering the Ultimate Winnie the Pooh VIP Experience with the privacy and comfort of a complete theatre buy-out accommodating up to 190 guests, as a way to enjoying the magic of Winnie the Pooh with the confidence and comfort of personally knowing every other patron attending the performance.

These safety measures are the most complete and thoughtful plan to bring audiences back to the theatre with confidence.

“We are excited to welcome audiences back to the theatre, but we also understand the difficulties that parents face in trying to adhere to current guidelines. Rockefeller Productions is happy to partner with Dr. Thornton and her team of professionals to make testing easy and convenient.  These efforts are well worth it to ensure the safety of our patrons while making sure they have complete confidence returning to live theatre once again.”  Rockefeller Productions’ Jonathan Rockefeller

Breaking box office records, Rockefeller Productions will debut its newest and most anticipated production Disney Winnie the Pooh: The New Musical Stage Adaptation, featuring songs by the Sherman Brothers and A.A. Milne, on October 21, 2021. This beautifully crafted musical stage adaptation is set deep in the Hundred Acre Wood and told with stunning life-size puppetry through the eyes of the Winnie the Pooh, Christopher Robin, and their best friends Piglet, Eeyore, Kanga, Roo, Rabbit, and Owl (and Tigger too).

Winnie the Pooh: The New Musical Adaptation is developed and presented by renowned family entertainment creator Jonathan Rockefeller (whose spectacular puppetry is omnipresent in the acclaimed productions of The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show and Paddington Gets in a Jam).  Performances will take place at Times Square’s Theatre Row (410 West 42nd Street) beginning October 21, 2021.

Tickets are now available here.

ABOUT THE SHOW

Winnie the Pooh has been enjoyed by millions of readers and viewers ever since English author A.A. Milne first chronicled the adventures of Christopher Robin’s friends in the Hundred Acre Wood in 1926. The books, featuring illustrations by English illustrator E.H. Shephard has sold over 50 million copies worldwide. The theatrical rights to the Pooh stories were acquired by Disney in 1961, with an original intent to produce a feature film, but after production began, Walt Disney decided to make short featurettes instead. The three featurettes were subsequently incorporated into the feature The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh.  This was the last film in the Disney canon in which Walt Disney had personal involvement. The first featurette, Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree was released during his lifetime, while Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day was still in development.  Disney’s Winnie the Pooh has since become one of the best-loved and most successful franchises in history.

The Sherman Brothers are the multi-talented Oscar® and Grammy® Award-winning American songwriting duo of Richard M. Sherman and Robert B.   Sherman. The Sherman Brothers wrote more motion-picture musical scores than any other songwriting team in film history.  Among these are the Disney classics Mary Poppins, The Jungle Book, Bedknobs and Broomsticks, and The Aristocats. The Sherman Brothers worked directly with Walt Disney on the first two Winnie the Pooh featurettes:  Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree (which garnered a Grammy Award nomination) and Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day. The brothers won a Grammy Award for the third featurette:  Winnie the Pooh and Tigger Too.  All three featurettes were incorporated into the 1977 musical film The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh. The duo also wrote songs for Winnie the Pooh and a Day for Eeyore and The Tigger Movie, with their music also featured in the movie Christopher Robin.

Jonathan Rockefeller and Rockefeller Productions embraced the challenge of re-imaging Disney’s Winnie the Pooh for a new audience by bringing it to life on stage in puppet form. The company has garnered global accolades, from critics and audiences alike, for their production of The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show, with 14 productions playing on four continents. An extended run of the show in New York City culminated in Drama Desk and Off-Broadway Alliance nominations, as did their production of Paddington Gets in a Jam, which tours China and the US later this year. Other projects include Elmer the Patchwork Elephant, which plays on three continents, Mr. Men and Little Miss Show at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, and the award-winning short film, 10 Little Rubber Ducks, written by preeminent author/illustrator Eric Carle.

Produced in association with Disney Theatrical Productions.

Art by Mina Tocalini of 360 Magazine for use by 360 Magazine

Fabtech Conference 2021

By: Skyler Johnson

Coronavirus affected every single aspect of society, including factory labor. The Fabtech 2021 conference showcased the top metal forming brands in Taiwan, discussing the unique ways they were able to adapt to Covid-19. 

Mechalogix was the first company that spoke. They designed a system designed to lower labor costs through computers that actually monitor the performance of the machines and send back statistics to the operator, allowing the user to gain statistics from the strength of a saw blade to overall performance. If something needs to be replaced, the user will know, and a mechanic can be sent to the machine. But, no one needs to be watching the machines, which allows for a decrease in labor costs.

SEYI has developed a computer program that allows for users to interface with a lot of different aspects of the press, figuring out the analysis of the machine, including operation analysis and downtime analysis. Like with Mechalogix, the technology is able to send messages immediately to maintenance personnel.

Tailift has implemented a system to help in decreasing the time between taking orders and delivering products by using different web services that cut out the middleman between taking orders and delivering products, and have secured high speed internet and a strong firewall to do so. The company has also invested in technology including utilizing robot arms which help to increase efficiency and decrease maintenance costs

Da Jie is utilizing automated technology in order to avoid human cluster as a result of the pandemic, thus leading to more efficiency in production and 50% of the material being saved. SImilar to Tailift, the company uses robotic arms and other devices in order to save on cost. 

Ultimately, metal forming companies have implemented a lot of changes in order to deal with the pandemic, making their systems smarter and more efficient in the process. The pandemic has hurt everyone, but these factories were able to adapt.

Image via Infamous PR for 360 Magazine

Pollen × Marshawn Lynch – Beastmode Experience

Pollen Presents Inaugural BEASTMODE Experience From Marshawn Lynch

Featuring Performances by A$AP Ferg, Rich The Kid, Too $hort, P-Lo, DJ Shellheart, and DJ Shabazz plus Special Guests

Celebrating Opening Weekend of the Football Season with a Pool Party, Tailgate, Club Events, Live Performances, and a Viewing Party Hosted by Marshawn Lynch

Three Day Takeover in Las Vegas from Sept 10-13

LINK

Marshawn Lynch is bringing the first ever BEASTMODE Experience to Las Vegas on the opening weekend of the football Season (September 10-13). For three days and three nights, Las Vegas will be in full BEASTMODE with tailgates, pool parties, clubs, viewing parties, and then some – all hosted by the iconic running back and BEASTMODE founder Marshawn Lynch.

The BEASTMODE Experience, brought to you by Pollen Presents, gives you the chance to get up close and personal with the legend himself. BEASTMODE kicks off on Friday night (Sept 10th) with a takeover of the famed Drai’s Nightclub, which will be hosted by Marshawn with performances by energetic Harlem artist A$AP Ferg and San Francisco’s own DJ Shabazz.

The experience continues on Saturday for an all-day pool party hosted by Marshawn and featuring hit-making NYC vocalist Rich The Kid, Bay Area producer and vocalist P-Lo, and highly-regarded turntablist DJ Shellheart. This will be followed by a BEASTMODE Tailgate featuring West-Coast icon Too $hort and another performance from DJ Shabazz.

The weekend rounds out on Sunday with an all-day football opening weekend viewing party hosted by Marshawn Lynch at Topgolf to celebrate the start of the season.

The BEASTMODE experience will deliver football and fun with all the amenities of the strip’s top resorts at your fingertips. You won’t want to miss out on an inaugural event that will kick-start more future BEASTMODE ventures from Marhsawn.

Packages for BEASTMODE Experience can be locked in with a $30 deposit. Party pass options start at $349 and include access to all parties and live performances. Pollen also offers a COVID-19 Money Back Guarantee making the event 100% refundable if it is cancelled or rescheduled due to COVID-19.

For more information, visit Pollen for details on rooms, prices, and the full itinerary.

About Pollen

Pollen is a technology company building, curating, and delivering the best experiences for members all over the world. Members enjoy these experiences together with the people they love, creating stronger relationships and unforgettable memories. Members immerse themselves in multi-day itineraries that combine live entertainment, parties, and relaxation time in more than 50 popular destinations. Members can discover and book these experiences exclusively on Pollen and the Pollen app. Pollen has already launched bespoke mini-breaks with mega stars like J Balvin, Marshawn Lynch and Ozuna.

Artist Lineup (A – Z)

A$AP Ferg

DJ Shabazz

DJ Shellheart

P-Lo

Rich The Kid

Too $hort

Image via Big Picture Media for 360 Magazine

Joyce Manor Play SummerStage

Capital One City Parks Foundation SummerStage Announces New Benefit Show

Joyce Manor with Turnover, Tigers Jaw, and Prince Daddy & The Hyena

September 23, 2021 in Central Park

Tickets On Sale Now

Capital One City Parks Foundation SummerStage is excited to announce Southern California-based punk rockers Joyce Manor will perform a ticketed benefit show in Central Park on Thursday, September 23, 2021 with Tigers Jaw, Turnover and Prince Daddy & The Hyena. Tickets are available for purchase ($25 advance / $35 day of) now at City Parks Foundation. Please note that proof of full vaccination must be shown at the door for entry to the show.

Songs From Northern Torrance, the latest album from acclaimed California-based four-piece Joyce Manor is available now. The 10-track compilation is a collection of early material that offers a glimpse into the band’s humble beginnings as an acoustic two-piece. Originally recorded between 2008-2010, many of the tracks have become fan favorites over the years previously existing in a live setting, or on rare CD-Rs sold by the band during their early days on the road.

I Won’t Care How You Remember Me, by the Scranton, Pennsylvania-based band Tigers Jaw, is an ode to living in the present. Tigers Jaw’s sixth albumߞand first for new label home Hopeless Records, finds members Ben Walsh (vocals/guitar), Brianna Collins (vocals/keyboards), Teddy Roberts (drums), and Colin Gorman (bass) at the height of their powers, fusing their collective skills with the synchronicity and energy the band honed over several years of non-stop touring. The result is a back-to-the-basement approach elevated by the unmistakable production of their longtime friend and collaborator Will Yip.

Turnover’s aptly titled new album, Altogether is the first collection the trio has written while living on opposite coasts. The record represents the group’s most collaborative and connected work to date, showcasing the intuitive, near-telepathic relationship frontman Austin Getz has developed over the years with his bandmates. Pop sensibilities inform the writing for the first time, with elements of funk, jazz, lounge, and disco mingling alongside the band’s trademark indie grit and punk energy.

Cosmic Thrill Seekers, the new record from Albany punk rock band Prince Daddy & the Hyena is an odyssey of epic punk, pop, indie, garage rock, and orchestral theatrics. It is a candid, acute documentation of front person Kory Gregory’s cyclical mental health states as told through three acts and 14 songs/chapters.

For the safety of all visitors, staff and artists, SummerStage in Central Park requires all guests to show proof of full COVID-19 vaccination in order to enter the shows at Rumsey Playfield in Central Park. Those who are not able to be vaccinated because of a disability will be provided reasonable accommodation and will be required to wear masks at all times. Children under the age of 12 who are not able to receive the vaccination may accompany their fully vaccinated parent or guardian. All children between the ages of 2 and 12 will be asked to wear masks at all times if they are physically able. Venue capacity may be limited at staff discretion.

SummerStage will accept proof of final Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer, Moderna or WHO-approved vaccination using the CLEAR app, the NYS Excelsior Pass, NYC Covid Safe app, a physical/photo of CDC vaccination card, or EU digital pass, accompanied by a government-issued photo identification. Guests must show that their final dose of vaccine was received at least 14 days prior to the show date. In addition, masks are required upon entry to the venue and strongly encouraged for all guests for the duration of the performance, as is physical distance. Learn more about acceptable documentation, mask guidelines, and other safety protocols here.

All SummerStage staff will continue to wear masks at all times and enhanced cleaning protocols will remain in place throughout the venue In Central Park, while pre-packaged food and beverage purchases will remain contactless through QR code. We encourage all guests to arrive early in order to prevent lines and crowding at venue entrances. For free SummerStage performances, most shows will be available to livestream at Summerstage’s website, free of charge, if guests are unable to attend in person.

A full list of upcoming SummerStage shows and a digital brochure is available now.

Capital One City Parks Foundation SummerStage is a proud member of the NYS Outdoor Performing Arts Coalition and the National Independent Venue Association (NIVA).

Follow SummerStage Social Media via Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and Twitch.

Photo via the Chamber Group for use by 360 Magazine

HIP HOP IN NYC CONCERTS

Mayor Bill de Blasio and Universal Hip Hop Museum (UHHM) Executive Director and President Rocky Bucano today announced with Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. and New York State Assembly Speaker Carl E. Heastie the dynamic lineup of Hip Hop, Latin freestyle, dance, freestyle, techno, and funk artists set to perform at the “It’s Time for Hip Hop in NYC” concerts to be held at outdoor venues in The Bronx, Staten Island, Brooklyn and Queens.

As a celebration of New York City’s comeback during NYC Homecoming Week, between August 14th to 22nd, all tickets for “It’s Time for Hip Hop in NYC” concerts—produced by New York City, the Universal Hip Hop Museum, and IDEKO—will be available for free.

“You don’t want to miss the local, legendary talent performing throughout NYC Homecoming Week,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “As we celebrate this Summer of New York City, we’re proud to partner with Rocky Bucano and the Universal Hip Hop Museum to bring these momentous concerts to our boroughs, free of charge. And if you get a ticket, you can go as long you have proof of your first dose of an approved COVID vaccine.”

“Hip Hop comes home to celebrate NYC Homecoming Week!” said Rocky Bucano, Executive Director and President of the Universal Hip Hop Museum. “Many of the artists performing in these shows are native New Yorkers hailing from the five boroughs. It’s their talent, creativity, and passion for the culture that spread it from the stoops, parks, and playgrounds to stages worldwide. The Universal Hip Hop Museum is proud to welcome them home, back to where it all began.”

“I’m excited to see this marquee event for NYC’s homecoming kick off in The Bronx. The Birthplace of Hip Hop will set the tone for the upcoming “It’s Time for Hip Hop NYC” concerts around New York City. This will be a show you do not want to miss,” said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.

“NYC Homecoming Week will allow for New Yorkers to celebrate our resiliency during an unprecedented time. As we work towards defeating COVID-19, what way to better come together than with a borough-wide initiative that will bring our small businesses to the forefront which has been so crucial to keeping our communities going through the toughest of times,” said New York State Assembly Speaker Carl E. Heastie. “Having the Universal Hip Hop museum’s participation in this celebration will bring NYC joy. Music has a way of unifying people of all backgrounds and giving soul to our great city. Thank you to Mayor Bill de Blasio and Universal Hip Hop Museum Executive Director and President Rocky Bucano for the “It’s Time for Hip Hop in NYC” concert series. These free events will allow for NYC dwellers to have safe summertime fun as well as a small return to normalcy.”

“At Citywide Events we work with partners across the five boroughs and beyond to ensure that events in our City are both safe and enjoyable for all,” said Citywide Events Executive Director Dan Gross. “We’re honored to produce the “It’s Time for Hip Hop in NYC” free concerts as part of our NYC Homecoming Week celebration that will exemplify the resiliency, strength, and creativity of our city.”

“IDEKO is thrilled to be a part of NYC Homecoming Week and reopening this great City that we all call home,” said Evan Korn, CEO of IDEKO. “We are excited to partner with Mayor de Blasio, Rocky Bucano, and the Universal Hip Hop Museum to produce four great nights of concerts in the boroughs. New York City is Back!”

All attendees must present proof of COVID-19 vaccination to enter the “It’s Time for Hip Hop in NYC” concerts. Reasonable accommodation will be provided for persons unable to get vaccinated because of a disability.

Free tickets for all four concerts will be released to the public in batches at nyc.gov/HomecomingWeek starting on Monday, August 2 at 10 a.m. EDT. Additional free ticket release dates and times are as follows:

  • Tuesday, August 3 at 7 a.m. EDT

  • Wednesday, August 4 at 9 p.m. EDT

  • Thursday, August 5 at 7 a.m. EDT

  • Friday, August 6 at 10 a.m. EDT

  • Saturday, August 7 at 9 p.m. EDT

New York City, UHHM, and IDEKO have teamed with Behind The Rhyme, a channel on Twitch devoted to Hip Hop and its culture, to Livestream the events in The Bronx, Staten Island, Brooklyn, and Queens. The broadcast, produced by Fortress Entertainment and Fuzzy Bunny Films, will feature live performances as well as backstage content and interviews hosted by veteran journalist Shaheem Reid. From August 16th to 17th and August 19th to 20th, fans can watch, chat and share custom emotes HERE.

As part of the “It’s Time for Hip Hop in NYC” experience and emphasizing the historical connection between Hip Hop and graffiti art, Thrive Collective—a nonprofit that creates hope and opportunity through arts, sports, and mentoring in and around public schools—will be curating a roster of standout New York City street artists that will create live, temporary art installations during the concerts.

“We’re thrilled to be working in the city that I love and with the NYC Mayor’s Office to showcase the “It’s Time for Hip Hop in NYC” event to the world,” says Ann Carli, Executive Producer of live streaming partner Behind The Rhyme. “Our channel has found a kindred spirit in the Universal Hip Hop Museum, an organization dedicated to the preservation of Hip Hop music and culture, which were born and raised on the streets of New York City.”

“Hip Hop embodies the creative spirit of resilient New Yorkers. Emcees provide the voice; graffiti writers, the name; breakers, the movement; and DJs, the community. Knowledge inspires us to never, ever give up,” said Jeremy Del Rio, Executive Director of Thrive Collective. “Thrive Collective proudly celebrates that heritage and our City’s continuing resilience, and we look forward to bringing live art to these concerts during NYC Homecoming Week.”

In addition to “It’s Time for Hip Hop in NYC,” NYC Homecoming Week, a citywide celebration of New York City’s resilience, will also include from August 14th through August 22nd:

  • “WE LOVE NYC: The Homecoming Concert produced by New York City, Clive Davis, and Live Nation” on Saturday, August 21 at 5 p.m. EDT

  • Free movie screenings by Rooftop Films;

  • Cultural activities and public art; and

  • Iconic events including NYC Restaurant Week and Summer Streets.

This celebration of New York City’s resilience will drive support for the mom-and-pop businesses and local organizations that define our neighborhoods and that kept the heart of our city beating throughout the COVID pandemic. Visit nyc.gov/HomecomingWeek for more information.

graph via Mina Tocalini for use by 360 Magazine

Survey Reveals Customers Prefer In-Person Shopping

Beautyque NYC unveiled its consumer survey results assessing “Beauty Consumer Survey: Has the Pandemic Changed Beauty Retail Forever?”. Key results included concerns over safety in-store protocols with testers and sanitary issues, increases in online shopping, and a profound desire for in-store purchasing ability. To see full survey report, click HERE

“Over the past year, the pandemic has changed the way we do almost everything—including shopping for our favorite beauty products. We were interested to see how beauty consumers have adapted their shopping habits, and gauge their overall opinions and experiences when it comes to shopping online vs. shopping in physical stores,” explains Beautyque NYC Founder & Owner Sonia Khemiri. “We asked our community of beauty lovers to complete a survey, and we were able to extract some interesting key insights using the data submitted by 229 respondents.”

One of the most interesting takeaways of this survey was learning the beauty consumer’s feelings toward being able to physically see, feel, and test a product before deciding to purchase it. An overwhelming 80.4% of respondents indicated that being able to physically experience a product before buying is extremely important to them.

“Contrary to a lot of the buzz we’ve been hearing about how brick and mortar retail is dead, the consumers themselves are telling us otherwise,” says Sonia.

“The pandemic has caused me to enjoy shopping in a physical store more than before. I love being able to see, feel, smell and sample the products I purchase,” says survey respondent Jennifer G.

According to the Beautyque survey responses, the top 3 reasons why consumers like shopping for beauty products in physical stores include:

  1. Being able to see, feel, and try on products in person before buying
  2. Getting a product immediately rather than waiting for delivery
  3. Requesting a product sample to take home

However, concerns were expressed about sanitary efforts of retail stores. A significant amount of people indicated that they would only use product testers if they were sanitized before their use.

Just over 40% of survey respondents said that they will only be using product testers if they are fully sanitized immediately before use; 33.5% said they will avoid using testers altogether for the foreseeable future; and 24% said they will continue using product testers as they always have.

“I don’t feel very safe/clean touching using testers. I am okay with sealed products. I still do like going in person so I can see how big the product is, the actual colors and just the overall environment,” according to survey respondent Jenny N.

Beautyque also assessed whether the pandemic changed the shopping habits of beauty consumers? And if so, will this change in habits outlast the pandemic and continue indefinitely?

“We asked beauty shoppers how often they shopped for beauty products in physical stores before, during, and after the pandemic,” Sonia outlines.

Approximately 62% of respondents indicated that before the pandemic, they shopped in physical stores often or all the time; by no surprise, that number dropped to 12% during the pandemic; and now, after the pandemic, that number has crawled upward to 27%.

“These results show us that people are definitely not shopping for beauty products in physical stores as often as they did pre-pandemic—maybe because the pandemic isn’t fully over, maybe because they found that they enjoy shopping online more, or maybe a combination of many factors—but the reality stands that consumer shopping habits have changed for the long haul,” Sonia believes.

The Beautyque survey also inquired about beauty shoppers who online purchased before, during, and after the pandemic, to compare the results. Just over a third (34%) of respondents indicated that before the pandemic, they shopped for beauty products online often or all the time; that number jumped up to 53% during the pandemic; and has decreased just slightly to 46% after the pandemic.

According to survey results, the top 3 reasons consumers like shopping for beauty products online include: 

  1. Being able to shop from anywhere, at anytime
  2. Seeing product reviews and ratings
  3. Searching for brands/products quickly and easily

Survey respondents also indicated their favorite features that have improved the online shopping experience for beauty products.

  1. Personalized quizzes to find your perfect shade match, formula, etc.
  2. Ability to live chat with beauty specialists or brand representatives
  3. Virtual try-on technology

“I’ve grown to enjoy [shopping for beauty products online] much more. Being able to read reviews and engage with others online replaces the questioning that may occur in store,” survey respondent April P. says.

An interesting takeaway from the survey is that, although online shopping rose during the pandemic and although products bought online were more likely to be returned than those bought in-person, returns were still lower during the pandemic than before. Having said that, most people preferred to shop online than in physical stores, although the difference was slim. A significant amount of consumers also preferred to browse for products online, then buy them in-person, indicating a balance between the preferences.

“Many consumers feel there are elements of online shopping that retail shopping cannot compete with. The luxury of shopping from the comfort of their home, finding things through their keyboard and browsing other customers’ reviews — many consumers feel these affordances are more valuable than what in-person shopping allows,” Sonia says.

Beautyque NYC is a disruptive retail marketing platform conceived by US-based female entrepreneur and indie brand founder Sonia Khemiri. In addition to the first ever beauty 3D storefront, Beautyque NYC provides an in-depth and interactive marketing platform for its more than 25 brands and 10000 consumers.

In addition to taking its own polls with its beauty enthusiasts, Beautyque NYC also spearheads Brand Evaluation Programs for its brand members to provide them direct product feedback from a focus group testing process.

Survey respondents include 229 consumers, ages 18 and older provided insight to how and if their beauty shopping habits changed during the pandemic.

To learn more, click HERE.