The amount of things to do in Washington, D.C. can be overwhelming. That’s why Nels Cephas founded DC Now Events.
After being part of the social scene for over 10 years, the West African native knows what’s going on and how to get to into the most interesting events in the city.
Raised in Silver Spring, Md., Cephas has been promoting clubs for more than 10 years.
Cephas attended Prince Georges County Community College in Largo, Md. in 2006 before transferring in 2010 to Bowie State University in Bowie, Md.
“I was exposed to a whole new world,” Cephas told the AFRO. “Living in the Montgomery County area was like day and night compared to P.G. County.”
Ironically Cephas did not like attending clubs at the time but enjoyed going out to Go-Go’s, D.C.’s popular music sub-genre. But a high school friend, who is now his business partner, Dauda Kondeh Jr., turned his distaste into a potential hustle once he noticed how profitable it was to get people to come out for a good time.
“He brought me on,” said Cephas. “Without him, I wouldn’t know how to market…I wouldn’t have the mindset to know how to be the entrepreneur that I am now. We learned so much marketing skills at that time because back then online marketing wasn’t as heavy.”
For seven years, Cephas worked for a promotions team called Mass Movement Entertainment, which focused on the D.C. nightclub scene. In 2012 he and Kondeh founded a marketing agency called ItsMcube.
In 2016 he expanded his portfolio by starting DC Now Events, an events platform.
“One thing that I’ve noticed that was missing in the area was you have a lot of locals who feel like where they are currently at is taken by a new group of people,” Cephas said. “Gentrification is at an all-time high.” On the other hand, “Tourists feel very boxed in because all they know is the typical touring spot. As a tourist, you want to maximize your time spent to come out here. So why not create a platform where tourists can feel like locals and locals can feel like tourists?”
Cephas uses his Snapchat and Instagram KingofKingz17 to market DC Now Events. Primarily on the weekends he promotes events unless a major celebrity is in town during the week.
He provides a list of events that will occur before the weekend starts or early that morning. Not only will he keep you on high alert on what events are happening, but he also attends at least three of the events that he promotes. Therefore, his viewers on social media can see what exactly the event is like before they go.
Later this year Cephas plans to launch a DC Now Events website that focuses on areas such as art, music, restaurants, day parties and family fun activities.
In the spring, Cephas will start broadcasting interviews with event planners and behind the scenes antics from his events.
“What separates me from other event platforms is I’ve been a part of every niche,” he said. “I’m not just showcasing it from one point of view…I’ve experienced multicultural, Caucasian, Hispanic and urban events, concerts, festivals, you name it. I’ve had the luxury to be able to attend, be a part of and do business with many events to now be able to showcase it on one platform.”