Sunday, March 14, 2010

Boston Wedding Show Hoax

So I'm back and finally rested up from my 2 week trip to Europe. It was the most amazing time of my life. I can't wait to go back and visit the countries I missed. For a recap, I visited Porto, Portugal; Lisbon, Portugal; Paris, France; Copenhagen, Denmark; Malmo, Sweden; Amsterdam, The Netherlands; Rotterdam, The Netherlands. Still lots more to see, but this was a great start.

While I was away, I heard of the hoax of a wedding show back in Boston. Brides, grooms and vendors alike were contacted in December about a three day wedding and home expo that was to take place in Boston the weekend of March 5th, and they weren't just contacted once, but bombarded with e-mails about signing up and paying money to have a table at this show.

This was called "The Boston 411 Bridal and Home Show". Between vendors and this "company", contacts were signed, money was paid, and actual verbal conversations were had with the phony organizers. Not only did vendors pay to have a table, but NEW marketing material was printed, and hopes were high for promises of about $100,000 more in sales. The coordinators of what Boston police are calling the best website for a hoax they have ever seen, were encouraging PayPal payments and not accepting checks--they wanted everything done electronically. Hello, red flag anyone?

This event was advertised the way most of us find out about events now--Facebook & Twitter. A website was made through with contact information, as well as event details listed out. People found out this was a hoax when they started calling the convention center it was to be located at, asking how early they could come in and set up, and where to park. However, when contacting Boston 411, they assured them it was a venue mix-up and the show was still on. When I went on Event Brite to find this website, it had been taken down already :(

Not only were vendors jilted, but so were couples. They paid a $10 or $15 admission price, and were promised contests and prizes and a full day of photographers, dresses, cakes, tuxedos, limos, the whole 9 yards. Granted there are other wedding shows and they were only out $10 or $15, it's still not an experience one would like to be involved in. Some of the vendors were out thousands and thousands of dollars.

So, a word to the wise: be careful who you do business with. Boston 411 had it all figured out--they had phone numbers, and real people answering the phones, contracts, a web site, etc. They had clearly done their research. This unfortunately now gives a bad name to these kinds of events now. Call the venue ahead of time--double check with them. The event won't be advertised unless it is confirmed at the venue. People are getting their money back, but its taking time and some won't.

My last question now is, what happened to these hoaxers? Did they get caught? Or are they still running around with everyone's money? If you're interested in reading more, a few websites are here, here, and here:

Eventfully Yours,

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