News

Nov 07, 2020
Eight months after Caesars Forum was scheduled to have its grand opening and start welcoming a packed schedule of groups before it was stopped in its tracks by COVID-19, the new venue hosted its first event – the 2020 ConferenceDirect Annual Partner Meeting. “We have always admired the work that Brian Stevens and the team at ConferenceDirect do,” said Michael Massari, chief sales officer for Caesars Entertainment. He added, “We enjoy a long-standing partnership and are pleased that we hosted this important event.” During the closing general session, Massari was recognized by Jerry… more
Nov 06, 2020
SIAARTI, the Italian Society of Anaesthesia, Analgesia, Intensive Care and Resuscitation, together with AIM Group International, a company with 60 years of experience in congresses, events and communication, broke the mold and re-invented the concept of a congress. Through its Traveling with ICARE tour, which took place Sept. 21-Oct. 4, anesthesiologists and resuscitators were greeted around Italy with a traveling knowledge exchange event. “We understood that the scientific society members needed to feel closeness to their colleagues engaged in the ongoing health emergency, and it was… more
Nov 06, 2020
Event technology and services companies 365 MEDIA and Taffy Event Strategies have formed a new strategic partnership to provide nonprofits and associations with needs analysis, planning and execution of virtual and hybrid events. The alliance comes on the heels of 365 MEDIA’s recent launch of its virtual event playbooks and services, designed to help associations and nonprofits maximize growth potential in the virtual realm.  The new collaboration will facilitate the sharing of virtual event best practices to deliver expertise, ROI and efficiency for organizations seeking to pivot to virtual… more
Nov 05, 2020
If you missed Weeks 1 or 2, start here to learn why event pros need a personal brand in the first place, then read this to discover how to build your brand foundation. You’ve set the stage for crafting your personal brand on the Internet, and now it’s time to execute. It’s important to remember that creating a personal brand takes time and effort, so consider it a long-term solution that will help you to yield the results you’re after — rather than a quick fix for a lay-off or furlough situation. To create a successful personal brand online, you should be two things: consistent and service… more
Nov 04, 2020
Implementing comprehensive safety measures, High Point Market forged ahead with its fall show, wrapping up the nine-day expanded home furnishings event on Oct. 21. Held Oct. 13-21 at High Point Market in High Point, N.C., the Fall Market experienced lower and more sporadic visitor traffic than in previous years. However, exhibitors reported strong order-writing thanks to serious buyers who showed up ready to do business.  “We kicked off Market with an energetic and exciting day full of appointments and walk-ins on Tuesday,” said Amanda Kinney, co-owner of Antique & Design Center of High… more
Nov 03, 2020
With more and more planners looking at a hybrid model for their meetings, Louisville Tourism and its industry partners showcased their ability to host such an event while also highlighting the work they’ve done as a city to welcome guests back safely. Held on Oct. 29, Barreling Ahead brought together 35 attendees at Kentucky International Convention Center, with an additional 100 joining virtually.  Currently, all Louisville hotels are open to guests, and event venues and restaurants are allowed to host groups at 50 percent capacity. “Louisville is ready to welcome business to our city,”… more
Nov 02, 2020
With the launch of its pre-travel testing program on Oct. 15, the State of Hawaii officially began welcoming visitors back to the islands. According to John Reyes, senior vice president and chief meetings, conventions and incentives (MCI) sales officer for Meet Hawaii, the reopening is positive news for groups looking to book meetings and events — even if, at the moment, allowable gatherings are still small. Currently, Hawaii has limited social gatherings to 10 people inside and 10 people outside. In an attempt to increase that number, Reyes says the tourism industry is urging political… more
Oct 29, 2020
Informa Markets has consolidated its North America-headquartered brands under a single leadership team led by Nancy Walsh, who has been promoted to the role of President of the expanded North America portfolio. “Since joining us, Nancy has immersed herself in understanding what value we can offer to our customers through our brands and developed solutions that keep our communities connected, 365 days a year,” said Charlie McCurdy, CEO Informa Markets. He added, “She and her team have demonstrated innovation and entrepreneurship – two fundamental attributes to our culture at Informa Markets… more
Oct 29, 2020
As the second-largest convention center in the state of Georgia, the 400,000-square-foot Georgia International Convention Center — like similar venues around the country — wasn’t accustomed to facing an empty events calendar for much of 2020. To stay afloat, GICC has shifted toward hosting events to help the local community, including food and blood drives, flu shot clinics, funerals and drive-up concerts. It’s also served as a free drive-thru COVID-19 testing site and most recently, as an early voting precinct for the November election. “The City of College Park, the GICC and Gateway Arena… more
Oct 28, 2020
Clarion Events has announced it has acquired California-based Quartz Events, the fastest growing producer of invitation-only, executive summits in North America. Clarion Events has a diversified business model that has evolved through high-growth market acquisitions, diversification across industry sectors and a strong focus on digital and virtual products. With the live event space under tremendous pressure today, Clarion has been able to find new ways to quickly and successfully deliver customer value and attract new customers in uncertain times. Quartz Events will be key in stimulating… more
Partner Voices
Overview: The award-winning Orange County Convention Center (OCCC) goes the extra mile to make every day extraordinary by offering customer service excellence and industry-leading partnerships. From their dedicated in-house Rigging team to their robust Exhibitor Services, The Center of Hospitality brings your imagination to life by helping you host unforgettable meetings and events. With more than 2 million square feet of exhibit space, world-class services and a dream destination, we are committed to making even the most ambitious conventions a reality. In October 2023, the Orange County Board of County Commissioners voted to approve allocating Tourist Development Tax funding for the $560 million Phase 5A completion of the OCCC. The Convention Way Grand Concourse project will include enhancements to the North-South Building, featuring an additional 60,000 square feet of meeting space, an 80,000- square-foot ballroom and new entry to the North-South Building along Convention Way. “We are thrilled to begin work on completing our North-South Building which will allow us to meet the growing needs of our clients,” said OCCC Executive Director Mark Tester. “As an economic driver for the community, this project will provide the Center with connectivity and meeting space to host more events and continue to infuse the local economy with new money and expanding business opportunities.” Amenities: The Center of Hospitality goes above and beyond by offering world-class customer service and industry-leading partnerships. From the largest convention center Wi-Fi network to custom LAN/WAN design, the Center takes pride in enhancing exhibitor and customer experience.  The OCCC is the exclusive provider of electricity (24-hour power at no additional cost), aerial rigging and lighting, water, natural gas and propane, compressed air, and cable TV services. Convenience The Center is at the epicenter of the destination, with an abundance of hotels, restaurants, and attractions within walking distance. Pedestrian bridges connect both buildings to more than 5,200 rooms and is within a 15-minute drive from the Orlando International Airport. The convenience of the location goes hand-in-hand with top notch service to help meet an event’s every need. Gold Key Members The OCCC’s Gold Key Members represent the best of the best when it comes to exceptional service and exclusive benefits for clients, exhibitors and guests. The Center’s Gold Key memberships with Universal Orlando Resort, SeaWorld Orlando and Walt Disney World greatly enhance meeting planner and attendee experiences offering world-renowned venues, immersive experiences and creative resources for their events. OCCC Events: This fiscal year, the OCCC is projected to host 168 events, 1.7 million attendees, and $2.9 billion in economic impact.  The Center’s top five events during their 2022-2023 fiscal year included:  AAU Jr. National Volleyball Championships 2023 200,000 Attendees $257 Million in Economic Impact MEGACON 2023 160,000 Attendees $205 Million in Economic Impact Open Championship Series 2023 69,500 Attendees $89 Million in Economic Impact Sunshine Classic 2023 42,000 Attendees $54 Million in Economic Impact Premiere Orlando 2023 42,000 Attendees $108 Million in Economic Impact