Kati Lloyd was excited to spend Saturday morning together with her husband on the first Maryland Breakfast Pageant, which promised cookies and salsa, "a bacon contest" and plenty of breakfast meals. Breakfast is particular for Lloyds, who received married lately and wished to do one thing good to rejoice.
Lloyd was lower than delighted with what she actually discovered, which she describes as a chilly buffet breakfast. The meals was served on small plates that she stated could be appropriate for cupcakes at a celebration.
"The meals was actually disgusting to be trustworthy," he stated.
Lloyd paid a complete of $ 60 for 2 VIP tickets for the occasion, which was held on the Frederick fairgrounds.
There was additionally a raffle, he stated, but it surely was promised that each one prizes could be despatched later. VIP tickets have been additionally supposed to incorporate a t-shirt, however when Lloyd requested, an occasion worker advised him he would get his handle later in an effort to ship him one. Lloyd stated that by no means occurred.
After apologizing to her husband, the couple toured the occasion to attempt to discover extra meals. However there have been none. Solely distributors, together with some that served espresso and muffins, however for a further price.
The remaining have been actual property brokers, medical doctors and residential enchancment firms.
"It simply didn't make sense, it's imagined to be a breakfast competition and but there's nearly no breakfast," Lloyd stated.
The competition was held by Grub MD, an organization that makes a speciality of meals occasions, based on its coordinator Michelle Godfrey. Godfrey stated they weren’t adequately ready for the quantity of people that attended.
“We had such an awesome crowd. We don't anticipate that, so we're higher ready for subsequent 12 months, ”stated Godfrey. "It’ll happen right here on December 19, it’s already deliberate, the contract is signed."
The buffet, which Godfrey stated was serviced by Iron Rooster in Cockeysville, was solely open to VIP ticket holders, who might enter one hour earlier than common admission ticket holders, who might enter at 10 am Common admission, which price $ 15.50 per individual, together with easy entrance to the occasion and parking, stated Godfrey. She stated that was clear from the ticket descriptions.
Tickets have been out there in each Eventbrite and Groupon. Eventbrite's description was lower than clear about precisely what the ticket included. Particularly, the outline indicated that "the constructing might be filled with probably the most scrumptious breakfast / brunch meals distributors, procuring distributors, actions, music and extra!"
Godfrey stated the distributors current needed to serve free samples, which was a "requirement" to be accepted on the occasion.
However when Sean Thomas and Felicia Morat arrived at 11:00 a.m., all these samples had disappeared. And Lloyd stated he didn't see any samples from any of the distributors at 9:00 a.m.
Having misplaced the alleged samples and the buffet, Thomas and Morat didn’t obtain any meals.
Thomas is allergic to most breakfast meals due to an allergy to dairy and eggs, however Morat was enthusiastic about having many breakfast meals in a single place.
"He married somebody who loves breakfast," Morat stated.
The couple deliberate to fulfill with the remainder of their household, who introduced their six-year-old son to the competition so he might meet Mrs. Claus, who was current.
They needed to modify their plans. The couple went to search for breakfast in downtown Frederick.
"I heard they’ve meals," Thomas joked.
At 11:30 a.m., there have been some distributors left within the house, however not many attendees. Moustapha Diene was serving espresso from Bourage Cafe in Silver Spring. The lattes price about $ three every. He stated that espresso with milk and French toast was common and that there was an extended line that began round 9:15 a.m.
Matt Hodges was promoting maple syrup from Vermont Excessive Low Farm on the occasion. He stated the primary hour was busy, however then the occasion rapidly calmed down.
He stated he wouldn’t return subsequent 12 months if he was given the chance.
Lloyd started asking for a refund at 9:30 a.m., however didn’t obtain a definitive reply. Since then he has despatched an electronic mail to the corporate and Eventbrite with out reply. Grub MD blocked it on Fb, the place he wrote a detrimental evaluate of the occasion.
The Fb web page of the Breakfast Pageant was filled with detrimental evaluations and competition goers demanding refunds, earlier than the web page was eliminated later within the afternoon.
A number of individuals stated that workers on the occasion merely advised them to request refunds by way of the positioning the place they purchased tickets, reminiscent of Eventbrite. However that isn’t the coverage of Eventbrite: they merely adjust to the insurance policies of the occasion organizer.
The outline on the Occasion Pageant web page of Breakfast Pageant learn "All ticket gross sales are closing".
Godfrey declined to touch upon refunds.
This isn’t Godfrey's first meals competition. Washington Metropolis Paper has reported on its former interval at NOVA Meals Fest Productions, which canceled a minimum of 5 totally different meals festivals up to now 12 months, together with a macaroni and cheese competition that was imagined to happen in Frederick.
Initially, the Breakfast Pageant was imagined to happen on October 5, but it surely was moved to a greater place.
Regardless of the feedback, which Godfrey acknowledged he acquired, he’s desirous to make issues larger and higher subsequent 12 months.
"It was a studying expertise and we totally loved the occasion, and we plan to take it as an annual occasion to the neighborhood 12 months after 12 months," he stated.
Observe Erika Riley on Twitter: @ej_riley