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Governors Ball to Host Outdoor Rooftop Celebration for Emmys’ 70th Year

This year, to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the Emmy Awards, the Governors Ball is taking the party outside.

For the first time, the official afterparty of the Emmys will feature an open-air rooftop setting, held on the L.A. Live Event Deck rather than in a more traditional ballroom, for what is being dubbed “Emmys Under the Stars.”

The more modern design for this year’s Governors Ball, which will feature celebrations Sept. 8 and 9 for the Creative Arts Emmys, and again on Sept. 17 for the Primetime Emmys, is “reflective of how the television industry has evolved,” says the ball’s committee co-chair Tammy Glover Park.

The party will not only feature an outdoor deck for mingling and dining, but also a tented indoor space covered with dangling lights, which highlights a dance floor, stage and ample seating options. Inspired by this year’s Emmy key art and the golden Emmy statue, the furniture and decor features shades of blue, white and metal tones.

“We really wanted to make sure that whether you were inside or outside, that you felt included and part of the party, that the party was in both spaces and you pick where you want to go hang with your friends,” says other co-chair Halina Siwolop. “The minute you walk up on the deck, you see the beautiful LED lights and we will also have spectacular lighting outside that kind of ties it all together.”

In another modern changeup, this year’s Governor’s Ball will forego the traditional sit-down dinner for a variety of small plate stations, with more than 35 items on the menu. The dishes, prepared for the the 23rd year by Patina Catering, range from hot fried chicken sliders and grilled cheese to cashew ceviche and sweet corn agnolotti. For dessert, sweet items like mini Mason jars of strawberry shortcake and chocolate rocher pastries round out the evening.

For Sequoia Productions’ Cheryl Cecchetto, who has served as event producer of Governors Balls for both the Emmys and Oscars over the past 20 years, the appeal behind the small plate options was a practical one, allowing for guests to move around the room rather than be tied to a dinner table.

“Because the event itself it mix and mingle, we didn’t want anybody to have to sit down with a fork and a knife,” Cecchetto says. “There’s a lot of lounges and communal tables and bjorns, just really areas that everyone can move around. So it doesn’t matter if you’re standing up, doesn’t matter if you’re sitting down, doesn’t matter if you’re on the go, small plates will work because you don’t need a knife for anything. Some of them are just one bite and you’re done.”

On the entertainment side, the three nights of festivities will feature a mix of live musical performances encouraging guests to hit the dance floor located in the center of the party, right below a large replica of the Emmy statuette.

“There’s sort of something for everybody at this event, whatever your food preference is or entertainment or if you’re that kind of person that loves to dine al fresco then fantastic; if you’re that kind of person who wants to kick up their heels and dance then great,” Cecchetto adds. “California’s the best place in the world to have events outside, so how great that we are doing both.”

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