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Giving Back a Priority of Hospitality, Meetings & Events

By M+E Staff

The hospitality and meetings and events industries are known for their generosity. Even after a couple of tough years courtesy of the COVID-19 pandemic, helping others has remained a priority. Here are a few examples from around the country. 

Treasure Island Resort & Casino in Welch, Minnesota, designated Can Do Canines as its April Charity of the Month. Based in New Hope, the nonprofit is dedicated to enhancing quality of life by providing assistance dogs to adults and children who live with disabilities that involve mobility challenges, hearing loss or deafness, seizure disorders, Type 1 diabetes, and childhood autism. 

As part of the Charity of the Month program, Treasure Island guests can donate unclaimed slot tickets at a ticket kiosk or donation box, and the casino matches all donations made each Saturday throughout the month. The Can Do Canines partnership concluded with a free family friendly event at Treasure Island on April 24 featuring live demonstrations, puppy training classes, and activities such as creating dog enrichment toys and coloring dog-themed costume masks. In addition, Treasure Island provided discounts for on-site amenities such as the hotel, gift shop, spa, and restaurants.

Since 1989, Can Do Canines has provided more than 800 service dogs, all free of charge, with dogs being adopted from local animal shelters when possible. Through the Charity of the Month initiative, guests and Treasure Island have donated more than $373,000 throughout the duration of the program.

On April 7, Omni Hotels & Resorts joined organizations across the globe to celebrate Global Meetings Industry Day(GMID), an annual event organized by the U.S. Travel Association to spotlight the importance and benefits of in-person, professional meetings and events. GMID events occurred in 30 countries. In celebration, Omni donated one meal for every group room in house during the week of GMID for a total of 50,000 meals to support Feeding America through its Say Goodnight to Hunger program.

“When it comes to getting business done, there is truly no substitution for a face-to face interaction,” says Daniel C. Surette, chief sales officer at Omni Hotels & Resorts. “This year’s GMID serves as a reminder of the incredible value of in-person meetings while inspiring business leaders to encourage their teams to get back on the road.”

Music City Center, in partnership with Sodexo Live! and Nestlé, also helped those in need by donating 150 gallons of soup to The Nashville Food Project on May 4. “The Big Soup” donation provided 1,500 servings of chicken noodle soup, supporting more than 20 community groups in the area that partner with The Nashville Food Project.

The soup was freshly prepared and chilled in the Music City Center kitchen by the facility’s culinary team. Nestlé gave seven cases of base ingredients, and Music City Center provided the other ingredients, as well as bowls and spoons. This is the second year for The Big Soup collaboration with The Nashville Food Project. 

“By combining our talents and resources, we’re able to better serve our neighbors in need, and we’re proud to do so,” says Music City Center President and Chief Executive Officer Charles Starks. The 2.1 million-square-foot-convention center is in downtown Nashville. 

Also in early May, Caesars Entertainment shared details about a $3.3 million donation to national and local nonprofit organizations through the Caesars Foundation. This year’s recipients include a first-ever partnership with the Boys & Girls Club of America and a donation to Meals on Wheels for the 20th consecutive year. The Caesars Foundation also gave to longtime partners Clean the World Foundation, International Center for Responsible Gaming, National Park Trust, and several others. The gifts fall into Caesars Entertainment’s core values and included nonprofits focusing on responsible gaming, sustainability, diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Caesars Foundation is funded by the more than 50 properties owned or operated by Caesars Entertainment and dedicated to improving the quality of life of team members and their families, communities, and society at large.