Bronner Brothers 75th anniversary hair show postponed due to COVID

James Bronner, show director of the Bronner Brothers International Hair Show, said the New Orleans show will be postponed over concerns about the high-contagious delta variant . CONTRIBUTED

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James Bronner, show director of the Bronner Brothers International Hair Show, said the New Orleans show will be postponed over concerns about the high-contagious delta variant . CONTRIBUTED

The glitz, glamour and the eye-catching hairstyles of the annual Bronner Brothers International Beauty Show will have to wait until a later date.

The Atlanta-based company planned to hold its 75th anniversary show at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans, Aug. 28 through Aug. 30. Instead, director James Bronner said the show, which brings in stylists and exhibitors from around the world, will be postponed because of concerns over the rise of the highly-contagious delta variant of the coronavirus.

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“After careful thought and prayer, we have made the difficult but right decision to postpone” the show, Bronner said in a Facebook post. “Although this was a heart-wrenching choice, we are confident it is the responsible things to do.”

The event, which is billed as the “largest multi-cultural beauty show,” would have brought between18,000 and 20,000 stylists, makeup artists, others who work in cosmology and beauty enthusiasts to New Orleans. Pre-pandemic the show could draw as many as 30,000 people per show twice a year.

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A new date has not be set.

In a statement on its website, Bronner Brothers said that “our hearts go out to those who are suffering from this disease, to the frontline workers struggling to keep people alive in full hospitals and to those who have lost loved ones.”

The delta variant is now the most dominate strain in Louisiana and, as in Georgia, is driving up cases and hospitalizations, mostly among the unvaccinated.

In Georgia, hospitals are overwhelmed with seriously ill patients.

Bronner said in an interview that he visited a couple of conventions and large meetings before the scheduled Bronner Brothers show and estimated that fewer that 10 percent of attendees wore masks. He didn’t want that to happen in New Orleans.

He said the show won’t be rescheduled “anytime soon until we get this virus under control.”

“I lost a few nights sleep over this,” he said. “It’s going to cost us a lot of money, but I felt it was necessary for the health of our community. If it had been another city that didn’t have that (high) count (of cases)...,” he said.

New Orleans requires proof of a COVID-19 vaccination or a recent negative test to go inside restaurants, bars and other indoor venues, but that does not “relieve us of our responsibility to play a role in keeping you as safe as possible,” said the company’s statement. “Since we cannot guarantee that everyone entering the venue will be fully vaccinated or free of the virus, or will want to take a COVID test, the best way we can keep you safe is to wait until the pandemic has ended or at least subsided to a better, new normal.”

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Bronner Bros. was formed in Atlanta in 1947 by Nathaniel H. Bronner Sr. and his brother, Arthur E. Bronner. They launched the beauty show that same year, drawing about 300 people to the Butler Street YMCA.

The company said it will begin notifying attendees and exhibitors on Wednesday about the next steps and start processing refunds to those who purchased tickets online. Exhibitors can get a refund or have their booth payment rolled over to the Miami show in August 2022.