• Meeting in Unexpected Places: Small Towns

     
    POSTED October 17, 2019
     

Sometimes small communities are overlooked as meeting and event destinations when frequently they have the capacity to host moderate-sized groups in an affordable and enjoyable fashion, especially if the towns are used to welcoming tourists. It may take some piecing together of lodging and venues, but Minturn (located between Vail and Beaver Creek) demonstrated how by hosting MountainCon 2019 from May 3-5.

Mountain-Con limits attendance to 40 and is for sport performance professionals looking to learn, network and collaborate on best performance outcomes for mountain sport athletes and general population clients. Based at Minturn Fitness Center, the conference included educational sessions, roundtable discussions, networking events and activities like yoga, mountain biking, hiking, trailrunning and fly-fishing. Evening receptions were held at Kirby Cosmos’ BBQ in downtown Minturn and 10th Mountain Whiskey Tasting Room in Vail, and attendees stayed in the local Eagle River Inn and Minturn Inn. 

The CDC defines close contact as within six feet or less, for 15 minutes or more with someone who tests positive for COVID-19. At gatherings of many kinds, contact tracing is used to trace the people that someone has come into contact with, before they learn that they have tested positive. This allows the people that the sick person came into contact with to be aware of the situation, and to make health-informed choices. 

 

In 2020, Houston First Corp. (HFC) reported that the city was slated to host 252 meetings and 611,000 room nights. By March 14, the Bayou City had already hosted 115 conventions and 137,400 room nights. Then the pandemic hit, and meetings and events across the country came to a screeching halt.

We asked Michael Heckman, acting president and CEO of Houston First Corp. (HFC) how the health crisis has influenced the organization’s business model moving forward.

 

Chances are, you won’t know you’re living through history until it’s too late. It’s already happening. A chain reaction has been set in motion and the ground has begun to slide beneath your feet.

This past year has been a whirlwind to say the least. As a global pandemic sent the world reeling, planners were left grasping for footholds as the event industry was brought to a standstill, and many of the most fundamental elements of live meetings and events were cast in a new light.