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2007 ‘CRUISE WITH
THE KING’ - BAHAMAS PHOTOS
August, 2007 will mark 30 years since the passing of Elvis. We wanted to do something special and exciting for the fans, so we came up with the idea of a group cruise to the Bahamas. We were very honored and proud to have Kathy Westmoreland and her assistant, June Moore as our special guests. We had a great time – Don did 2 shows that were open not only to our group, but to all of the other cruise guests as well and we had a very large crowd. Kathy and June were very kind and gracious to the fans. Kathy had been doing a lot of traveling and we knew she was tired. We wanted her to enjoy herself and sort of be on vacation, so rather than a formal appearance and a question and answer session, we had her do some informal one-on-one time with the fans – she talked to many people individually and posed for pictures. It was the chance of a lifetime to be up close and personal with these lovely ladies.
The cruise itself was fun, unfortunately, one month before we were to set sail, Carnival supposedly came up with a ‘no solicitation policy’. We were originally told that we could sell merchandise (Kathy had photos and CD’s to sell, as well as other merchandise), and one month out, Carnival notified me and said that groups were not allowed to sell anything. It caused us a lot of problems and grief – very frustrating, considering I know of many groups who sold merchandise or were planning to sell merchandise on upcoming cruises. To make a long story short, they insisted I sign a ‘No Solicitation Agreement’. If I didn’t, they wouldn’t let Don do his performance. I had a lot of problems with Carnival, pre-cruise, lots of time involved in phone calls and getting the run-around when I should have been doing my other work. My legal firm contacted Carnival and they never replied. I could not believe that a company as well known as Carnival wouldn’t respond to a legitimate customer complaint.
After the cruise, I then wrote two letters to the President of Carnival, and he never responded. Finally, one of his assistants wrote and said they were sending my complaint to some other department and I have yet to get a response. Many groups go on cruises and sell a lot of their merchandise. There was a lot of time-consuming preparation involved with this cruise. June made CD’s especially for this cruise and then she wasn’t allowed to sell them. We spent a lot of time preparing for this cruise, making special merchandise to sell and buying things that would enhance our show. Had I known that we would have had all these problems, I would have chosen another cruise line. To those of you planning a group event with Carnival, be careful.
Anyways…..as I said, the cruise itself was fun. One woman in our group won a free cruise for 2 and another woman won some money at the slots, so after the pre-cruise hassle, everything else went well. We were a little nervous doing our tribute with Kathy Westmoreland in the audience, I mean this woman sang with Elvis for 7 years! There is no one that could ever compare to Elvis - Don doesn’t try to ‘be Elvis’ and he doesn’t think he is Elvis like some tribute artists do. Kathy had some very nice comments – she said she liked the name of our show, which is ‘A Tribute to the MAGIC of Elvis’. She said that one of the things Elvis wondered about was would he ever be remembered. She said that Elvis would be proud of Don for doing a good tribute and ‘keeping his magic alive’! It was a great compliment for Don, especially since it came from Kathy Westmoreland.
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