News

Oct 12, 2020
UFI, the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry, and SISO, the Society for Independent Show Organizers, are calling on global policymakers and governments to follow a “testing before quarantine” approach for business-related travel and activities. This approach, both organizations say — which would include activating the potentials of rapid antigen COVID-19 tests — would enable businesses to move forward out of a global recession not seen in generations. A statement signed by UFI President Mary Larkin (president of Diversified Communications, USA) and SISO Chair Doug Emslie (group… more
Oct 09, 2020
While the California Department of Public Health’s latest guidelines continue to prohibit in-person gatherings, San Diego meeting venues will be ready the moment that changes. “Our tourism industry collectively has instituted best-in-class protocols and procedures so meeting planners and attendees should feel comfortable when it is time to welcome them back,” says Julie Coker, president and CEO of San Diego Tourism Authority. As part of the new measures, San Diego’s largest venue — the 2.6 million-square-foot San Diego Convention Center — has achieved GBAC STAR accreditation after… more
Oct 07, 2020
The first use of the phrase “care package” to refer to parcels of food or supplies sent to people located far away came during World War II. These days, event organizers are utilizing the same concept to bring a bit of the flavor of live gatherings to virtual attendees. From branded boxes filled with locally sourced goods to gifts carrying corporate social responsibility components, these five corporate gifting companies offer an array of options. Batch According to co-founder Sam Davidson, Nashville-based Batch seeks out the best gifts made by small businesses across the United States.… more
Oct 06, 2020
The home of the Packers will also be home to an expansive new event venue by January 2021. Resch Expo, a 125,000-square-foot, column-free exposition center, is located in Green Bay, Wisconsin, adjacent Lambeau Field in the city’s entertainment district. Together with the existing Resch Center — which opened in 2002 and hosts events from concerts to trade shows — it will make up the new Resch Complex. More than 700 hotel rooms and a dozen restaurants are within easy walking distance of the complex, complementing the city’s more than 4,500 total hotel rooms. Design of the non-union Resch Expo… more
Oct 05, 2020
Seattle-based event marketing platform Banzai recently acquired High Attendance, a cloud-based virtual and hybrid event management software for enterprises. Banzai plans to integrate its flagship marketing automation platform, Banzai Reach, with High Attendance’s platform to give Banzai customers — including Adobe, Chef Software, Dell, Pure Storage and other large enterprises — a seamless experience for growing and engaging their audiences. “Currently the event marketing landscape is a mess,” said Brian Goldfarb, CMO at Chef Software. “It’s littered with half-baked solutions that were not… more
Oct 02, 2020
In a rather bold move amidst a tumultuous year for the tourism industry, Visit Spokane has unveiled a restructuring of its business model that will lead to a short-term reduction in revenue but ultimately open up other avenues of funding and allow the organization to live more fully into its mission of marketing the whole region.  “We found our old model to be antiquated and restrictive,” says Meg Winchester, president and CEO of Visit Spokane. “The hope is that by restructuring the way we do business we will create better partnerships with Spokane’s hospitality community, which will make… more
Sep 30, 2020
Originally scheduled for May 27 and postponed due to the pandemic, Exhibition and Convention Executives Forum (ECEF) will now be held Nov. 18 as a retooled virtual experience.  To aid in transitioning the annual information-sharing and networking event for independent organizers and leaders of associations, Sam Lippman, ECEF producer and president of Lippman Connects, has partnered with Freeman. As part of the partnership, Freeman will provide the virtual event platform and serve as the exclusive gold sponsor. “I have watched the Freeman team strengthen their capabilities in strategy,… more
Sep 29, 2020
Opening a new convention hotel in the middle of a pandemic may sound preposterous to some. Yet things went on as planned in Rockford, Illinois, which opened the brand-new Embassy Suites by Hilton Rockford Riverfront in early July. The new hotel is the first full-service property in the Rockford area and located in the center of downtown, which has seen a lot of activity over recent years—think new breweries, restaurants, UW Health Sports Factory and the 2013 renovation of BMO Harris Bank Center. “Talk about a gamechanger in terms of making our downtown a destination,” says Nick Povalitis,… more
Sep 28, 2020
As part of Phase 4 of Governor Andrew Cuomo’s New York Forward plan, meeting venues in New York City are now able to host in-person gatherings of up to 50 people at under 33 percent of the venue’s capacity. Planners can add to these numbers by bringing additional attendees in virtually; that’s why a number of New York venues are embracing the hybrid meetings concept. “Our world-class venues have adapted to meet the current moment with innovative new hybrid models that will help us to safely welcome meeting delegates and event attendees back to the five boroughs,” said Fred Dixon, president… more
Sep 25, 2020
Meetings in Seattle are about to be back in business. Washington State Governor Jay Inslee has modified the state’s Phase 2 and Phase 3 restrictions around business meetings, professional development training and testing, and similar activities, effective Sept. 21. According to the new guidance, the Governor’s Safe Start reopening plan will permit meetings and business events to be held at an indoor capacity of 30 percent or 200 guests, whichever is less (excluding venue staff). Adherence to strict COVID-19 protocols must be followed, including implementation of social distancing… more