Nicole Crews -- Casual Living, February 9, 2012
I'm a sucker for award season. It doesn't matter if it's Critics' Choice or Golden Globes, Screen Actors Guild, Independent Spirit or the grand finale Academy Awards, each New Year the film industry has me enthralled with the first unfurling of red carpet.
So it pleases me to no end to announce that this year, after decades of viewer participation, I'm finally getting in on some award action.
Casual Living has announced the honorees of our first awards ceremony. It's taking place at our inaugural Casual Living Conference, at the Ritz-Carlton in Sarasota, Fla., a few thousand miles eastward of Hollywood, but just a few days shy of the Academy Awards.
We are paying tribute to those that take their company and the industry as a whole to a new level through creativity, innovation, and decisive and bold actions - and I think you'll agree that our selection for each category is undisputedly worthy.
Drum roll please ... Glen Raven Custom Fabrics, manufacturer of its Sunbrella brand of outdoor fabrics, will be honored as Supplier of the Year, and Leader's Casual Furniture, the Florida based, 19-store retailer, will be recognized as the Retailer of the Year.
The conference agenda, titled "The Sky's the Limit," inspired the award itself - a multi-faceted, upward-reaching obelisk. The conference features a widespread array of speakers and panels addressing success strategies, industry challenges, category growth and more. We tee off on Wednesday with golf, spa treatment options, a retail tour and cocktail party, but as everyone knows - the real fun kicks in at the Awards Dinner and Ceremony on Feb. 23.
Please join us. It looks to be a red carpet event all around.
The event is sponsored by Sunbrella, Agio, Merchandise Mart Properties Inc., Treasure Garden, AmericasMart, TUUCI, Pride Family Brands, the ICFA, Telescope Casual, Gensun Casual, International Market Centers, Dallas Market Center, Casual Cushion, Windward Design Group, Alfresco Home, Abercrombie Textiles, Gloster, Lane Venture, Lloyd/Flanders and OW Lee.