From bustling big cities to picturesque small towns, Ohio has a lot to offer your next meeting or event!
According to Barrie Perks, Vice President of Sales & Services, Cincinnati USA CVB, planners are seeking to incorporate local, unique touches specific to the destination, especially relating to food, culture, local sports, and the arts. The interest factor of experiencing a new city helps boost attendance and morale--
More meeting events are taking place in unique local spaces and landmarks, from microbreweries and urban parks to hotel rooftops. In Cincinnati, some examples might include hosting a social event over the Ohio River on the Purple People Bridge, a pedestrian-only thoroughfare connecting downtown Cincinnati to Newport, or taking advantage of an outdoor location in close proximity to attendee hotels and meeting spaces. In 2015, groups meeting in Cincinnati have held rallies and concerts in Fountain Square, as well as formal evening events in the recently-renovated Washington Park in the historic Over-the-Rhine neighborhood.
Planned recreational activities for attendees to engage in are also popular. In Cincinnati, attendees can “take advantage of free fitness classes going on downtown in Washington Park, or we’ve had conventions schedule their meeting around a 5k race or concert so attendees can enjoy the entertainment.”
“Today, planners are more willing to shed old routines and introduce new activities, environments, and foods to create shared experiences that will get everyone talking,” said Perks. “We do that by working with planners to offer attendees something unique that they won’t get anywhere else.”
Looking to the future, Perks noted that technology will continue to lead the changes in the industry, as guests begin to expect more services provided digitally, i.e. more satellite check-in for hotels, widespread wireless internet access, etc.