Mid-Atlantic Events Magazine Sept/Oct 2022 Issue

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MID-ATLANTIC

EVENTS September | October 2022

Challenging and Rewarding! Being Back in-Person was a must

Chester County CVB's Culinary Challenge at the Desmond Hotel, a DoubleTree by Hilton, Malvern, PA


EXPECT MORE THAN MOUNTAINS IN THE POCONOS

Silver Birches

Kalahari Resorts & Conventions

Pocono Organics

Make your vision a reality in the Poconos, where you’ll find the space you need to collaborate with your team and build a successful future. Up-to-date amenities and all of the latest tech make hosting your next event in the Poconos a breeze. After your meeting or conference, it’s time to enjoy all the perks the Poconos has to offer, from enjoying a night out in our downtowns, sampling delicious drinks on our beverage trail, or hiking up our mountains for a gorgeous view. Email sales@poconos.org to learn more.

SM

#MeetThePoconos


POCONO MOUNTAINS, PA

SERIOUS MEETINGS WITH SERIOUS FUN At Kalahari Resorts & Conventions, we give you everything you need to make your event a success. You and your attendees will enjoy ample event space, custom group and world-class dining experiences, a full-service spa and second to none service. Your attendance-increasing event at Kalahari is one your members will look forward to.

KalahariMeetings.com | Call 855-411-4605 to learn more | Follow Us:

› › › › ›

205,000 square feet of flexible event space 977 guest rooms & suites Diverse team-building options available on-site Eight food & beverage options The best amenities available, all under one roof

| ©2022 Kalahari Management Co. LLC


You and your Meeting Planning Team are invited...

Industry Panel Discussion: “Industry Then and Now…Now What?” “How the industry has changed during our respective careers and where do we see it going as we move into the future”

4:00pm – 5:00pm David Jackson, CMP, HMCC Managing Partner KKD Tourism Advisors, LLP

Joy Dickerson, Ed.D. Assistant Dean of the Division of Business, Computing, and Social Science

Tuesday October 25, 2022 Community Arts Center 414 Plush Mill Rd, Wallingford, PA 19086

Delaware County Community College

Bonnie Grant, HMCC Executive Director PHL Life Sciences

4:00pm – 7:30pm Ira L. Rosen, MA, CFEE Visit Delco, the official TPA for Delaware County, invites you to their premier event showcasing its finest venues, hotels, caterers, and restaurants. Meeting planners looking for

Associate Professor Temple University’s School of Sport, Tourism and Hospitality Management

unique venues, meeting spaces and special event offerings are invited to visit and network

Fred M. Stein

with up-and-coming and established

Senior Partner

hospitality professionals from the Main Line

The Creative Group, Inc

to the Brandywine. Discover the many reasons Delaware County is the right choice for successful meetings, events, and gatherings.

For more information, visit our website: visitdelcopa.com/meet-me-in-delco

REGISTER NOW! delco.ticketleap.com/meet-me-in-delco-event

Trade Show & Showcase:

5:00pm – 7:30pm


DISCOVER EXTRAORDINARY EXPERIENCES OPENING EARLY 2023 Once our luxurious new tower is complete, our AAA Four Diamond hotel will offer: • 552 lavish guest rooms and 50 suites, plus a rooftop spa and indoor pool • 60,000 square feet of flexible event space, including a 24,000 square-foot ballroom with 24’ ceilings • Unsurpassed convenience with everything under one roof For further details or to submit an RFP visit windcreekbethlehem.com.


FEATURING 416 Integrated Guest Rooms 90,000 sq. ft. of Exhibit Space

EXPLORE THE POSSIBILITIES

While planning your next big event, don’t settle for anything less than the best of both worlds. Located in the historic heart of downtown Lancaster City, the Lancaster County Convention Center allows visitors to have their cake and eat it too—where big city culture can be savored at a small town pace.

Jacyn H Thompson

JACYN.THOMPSON@AIMHOSP.COM

DIRECTOR OF CONVENTION SALES

PHONE (717) 207-4045

25 S. QUEEN STREET, LANCASTER, PA 17603-3918

MOBILE (717) 344-7367

LancasterConventionCenter.com


Breathing

Store

room A great meeting is more than a great meeting room. In Valley

Forge, there’s more to enjoy – including savings. Earn $10 off

per room night when you book 25 room nights or more.

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Meet.ValleyForge.org

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CONTENTS MID-ATLANTIC

September z October 2022

EVENTS September | October 2022

Chester County CVB's Culinary Challenge at the Desmond Hotel, a DoubleTree by Hilton, Malvern, PA

d Rewarding! Challenging an in-Person was a must Being Back

Photo Credit: Mario Oliveto Photography

PAGE 10 - Table games are just one of the fun forms of entertainment at casino properties like Rivers Casino in Philadelphia, PA

PAGE 72 Hilton, Malvern, PA d Hotel, a DoubleTree by y Challenge at the Desmon Chester County CVB's Culinar

FEATURES

10

Entertainment at Casino Resorts All-in-one destinations with plenty of nightlife and activities

24

Mountain Meetings Properties offering scenic views and ample outdoor recreation

34

Museums, Theaters and Attractions Unique venues for holding events and meetings

42 PAGE 34 - The Please Touch Museum, Philadelphia, PA features many interesting spaces and exhibits for events; photo credit: Philip Gabriel Photography; courtesy: Brûlée Catering

Winter Adventures and Holiday Happenings Fun places and spaces to visit in the coming months

52

Visual Media and Hybrid Events Advanced Staging Productions examines hybrid event success

54

Events and Hospitality Trends Ten trends that have taken hold in 2022

EVENTS EXTRAS 56 60

PAGE 42 - The Midtown Men Holiday Show in Atlantic City, NJ

8

September z October 2022

68 72 76 80

Location Report - Washington, DC Location Report - Virginia: Alexandria; Arlington; Charlottesville & Albemarle County; Fairfax; Hampton; Loudoun County; Richmond Region; Virginia's Blue Ridge; Virginia Beach A COHNversation with Jim: How was Your Summer? EventsWorthy-Chester County Culinary Challenge Around The Region EventMakers


Mid-Atlantic Events Staff PUBLISHER & EDITOR . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Jim Cohn MANAGING EDITOR . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Rich Kupka DESIGN & PRODUCTION . . . . . . . . . . .Dana Kurtbek-MME Media FEATURES EDITOR . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Lydia Young TRAVEL EDITOR . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Ken Alan EVENTS DIRECTOR . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Jennifer Johnson CONTROLLER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Robert Conrad CONTENT CONTRIBUTIONS BY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Advanced Staging Productions, Jonathan Morse, Sage Catering

ADVERTISING & SALES 215-947-8600 ad-sales@eventsmagazine.com

EDITORIAL OFFICES 1800 Byberry Rd Ste 901, Huntingdon Valley, PA 19006 215-947-8600 editor@eventsmagazine.com Opinions expressed in editorial submissions contributed to Mid-Atlantic Events Magazine are those of the individual authors exclusively and do not represent the opinions of Mid-Atlantic Events Magazine, its staff, its advertisers, or its readership. Mid-Atlantic Events Magazine and Tri-State Events Magazine, Inc. assume no liability or responsibility for independently contributed editorial submissions or any typographical errors, mistakes, misprints, or missing information within advertising copy.

- Chester County Conference & Visitors Bureau - Discover Lancaster

MEETINGS WITH A SIDE OF VITAMIN SEA From corporate retreats to big time concerts to antique car shows, and everything in between, it’s no wonder year after year meeting and event planners choose the Wildwoods Convention Center!

- Green Meetings Industry Council - Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association

Vol. 35, No.6

International – Greater Philadelphia, South Jersey and Delaware - International Live Events Association – Greater

• 380 – 10’ x 10’ exhibit booth space or seating for up to 7,500

Philadelphia, North Jersey & Washington DC - Meeting Professionals International – Middle Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Philadelphia & Potomac - Mid-Atlantic Society of Association Executives - National Association of Catering Executives – Greater Philadelphia/South Jersey - Ocean City, MD Convention and Visitors Bureau - Pennsylvania Restaurant & Lodging Association - Pennsylvania Society of Association Executives - PHL CVB - Pocono Mountains Convention & Visitors Bureau

• 75K square foot exhibit arena, a 12K square foot Ballroom and 10-Meeting Rooms

Connecticut Delaware Maryland New Jersey New York Pennsylvania Virginia West Virginia Washington, DC

- Professional Convention Management Association -

• Modern amenities / State-of-the-art communication systems • Full in-house Catering/Concession services • Adjacent to the world-famous Wildwoods Boardwalk and 5 miles of FREE white sand beaches • On-site parking for over 700 vehicles • 30K square feet of pre-function space • Free Wi-Fi for attendees

Greater Philadelphia - Valley Forge Tourism and Convention Board - Visit Bucks County - Visit Delco, PA

Mid-Atlantic Events Magazine is the bi-monthly, Mid-Atlantic publication, bringing information about the Hospitality and Meeting Industry to Meeting, Seminar, Trade Show, Overnight Accommodation, Special Event, Conference, Convention, for Association, Corporate, Group and Individual Planners along with Hotel, Resort, Conference Center, Attraction, Banquet Facility General Managers, Directors of Sales, Catering and Conference Services. Mid-Atlantic Events Magazine (ISSN 0896-3967), is published bi-monthly by Tri-State Events Magazine, Inc. Copyright 2022 by Tri-State Events Magazine, Inc. All rights reserved.

Mid-Atlantic Events Magazine 1800 Byberry Road, STE 901 Huntingdon Valley, PA 19006 215-947-8600 www.eventsmagazine.com

Follow Us On Facebook

Mid-Atlantic Events Magazine

To schedule your next meeting or event,

800-992-9732 | WildwoodsCC.com Mid-Atlantic EVENTS Magazine

9


Casino Resorts: Entertainment & Night

­10 September­z October­2022


life

Corporate and independent planners alike bring their groups, meetings and events to casino resort properties because these destinations can serve as all-inone venues that offer everything from overnight accommodations and fine dining to meeting space and entertainment. As a matter of fact, entertainment is one of the areas where casino properties shine especially brightly, from the action of the gaming floor to the excitment of sportsbooks to relaxation at spas and swimming pools to showstopping productions and headliner performances. Here is what's happening at some of the top casino resort destinations throughout the region this fall and winter. Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­11


Poker room at Mount Airy Casino in the Pocono Mountains, PA; photo credit: J.C.Getz Creative

MOUNT AIRY CASINO RESORT MT. POCONO, PA At Mount Airy Casino Resort in the Pocono Mountains, there is a wide variety of options to keep visiting groups both engaged and entertained, as every season offers in a list of exciting headliners. For example, this fall will bring performances by WAR (October 14), ABBAMania (October 28), and comedic acts like Vic DiBitetto (December 2). Live entertainment can be enjoyed on the casino floor, too, at The Glass Bar every Friday and Saturday night. In addition, Pia’s Lounge and the Get Wet Pool Bar both provide even more opportunities for fun. Beyond the nightlife scene, Mount Airy Casino Resort offers plenty of options for rest and relaxing recreation. Whether it’s taking advantage of luxurious spa options, lounging by the swimming pool, or setting up a tee time at the property’s award-winning golf course, there’s something for every member of the group, and a dedicated team is on hand to help ensure group outings to the resort are always effortless and successful.

WIND CREEK BETHLEHEM, PA In addition to offering free, live entertainment most weekends at Molten Lounge, Wind Creek Bethlehem features a luxurious multipurpose entertainment and event space, the Wind Creek Event Center, which hosts live entertainment acts ranging from comedy to sports to music and more. Some of entertainment's biggest acts have performed here, such as Rod Stewart and Mariah Carey. This upcoming season is no different, with scheduled acts like Foreigner, Diana Ross and Amy Schumer. Wind Creek provides the opportunity to add exciting elements to a meeting or event that can “level up” the experience for both planners and attendees. Onsite amenities include an award-winning hotel, spa, world-class gaming, and several restaurants. Team building activities at Wind Creek encourage in-person conversation, collaboration, and recreation. The Outlets at Wind Creek (located on property) feature more than just shopping, with group-focused entertainment like Angry Jack’s Axe Throwing Club. In the future, Trap Door Escape Room, a nautical-themed escape room, will blend theatre, production and massive sets with traditional elements of an escape room designed to foster in-person connections with engagement, problem solving, and entertainment. ­12 September­z October­2022


ONE OF A KIND EVENT. MOHEGAN KIND OF EXPERIENCE.

SHARECARE HEALTH SECURITY VERIFIED® WITH FORBES TRAVEL GUIDE

With an award-winning staff and an unmatched variety of dining and entertainment options, Resorts Casino Hotel is the one of a kind choice for your next event. Let us help you plan your own one of a kind experience in our 64,000 square feet of 昀exible space, with breathtaking views of the Atlantic Ocean. All in one of the most acclaimed locations anywhere, the famed Atlantic City Boardwalk, and featuring the quality, service and style of a Mohegan Sun property. Just minutes from two international airports.

CALL 609.340.7850, VISIT MEETATRESORTSAC.COM OR EMAIL SALES@RESORTSAC.COM TO BOOK YOUR SITE VISIT.

1133 Boardwalk, Atlantic City, NJ

ONE OF A KIND.


RIVERS CASINO PHILADELPHIA, PA “From a girls’ night out to the convention after-party, Rivers Casino Philadelphia offers fun nights for both small groups and large celebrations. Guests will enjoy singing and dancing to the free live music played from the stage next to Jack’s Bar + Grill,” notes Michael Klimek, director of advertising and retail marketing, Rivers Casino Philadelphia. In addition to featuring live music every weekend, Rivers Casino also offers weeknight entertainment, including Sing Like a Star Live Band Karaoke on Thursdays. Backed by the casino’s house band, visitors can serenade friends and guests who are enjoying dinner or a late-night bite at Jack’s. Rivers Casino Philadelphia also has monthly ticketed shows. Their upcoming lineup features comedy and music heavyweights: on October 8, Jeremy Piven brings his stand-up to The Event Center for a night of laughs; and on December 10, the casino kicks off the holiday season with jazz icon Kenny G and the Miracles Holiday and Hits Tour at The Event Center. Rivers Casino Philadelphia also features a large variety of slots and table games, and groups can reserve private gaming tables. For a more immersive experience, the state-of-the-art BetRivers Sportsbook features a massive 56.5-foot by 10.5-foot LED high-definition central monitor. “There’s truly something for everyone, all in one convenient location,” says Klimek. “Rivers is a great opportunity to take advantage of built-in entertainment, various dining options and free, on-site parking. Rivers is conveniently located on the picturesque Delaware River, and is easily accessible.”

BetRivers Sportsbook, Rivers Casino Philadelphia, PA ­14 September­z October­2022


RIVERS CASINO PITTSBURGH, PA Rivers Casino Pittsburgh’s 25,000-square foot, second-floor Event Center complements its existing banquet lineup. The Center’s grand hall is a “black box” space, meaning the room is well-appointed but intentionally nondescript in color palette and design. With unobstructed corner-to-corner views, the room allows meeting and event planners maximum flexibility for tailoring the space to deliver unique experiences.

BetRivers Sportsbook, the city’s first and only licensed sportsbook. Other amenities include a diverse lineup of eight distinct bars and restaurants, and The Landing Hotel at Rivers Casino Pittsburgh soon will open attached to the existing casino facing the nearby Carnegie Science Center.

The Event Center also plays host to top entertainment and live performances. Rivers Casino Pittsburgh is excited to welcome SNL alum and star of “30 Rock,” Tracy Morgan, on October 8, and the Barenaked Ladies on November 5 to The Event Center stage. A premier gaming and entertainment destination in Western Pennsylvania, Rivers Casino Pittsburgh is home to

PHILADELPHIA’S FIRST CASINO

WELCOMES YOU!

Located in one of the country’s most historic cities, along the banks of the Delaware River One of Philly’s best entertainment destinations, with thrilling casino games, great dining, star-studded entertainment & more Open 24/7 with free parking

GAMBLING PROBLEM? CALL 1-800-GAMBLER.

P H I L LY LOV E S A W I N N E R Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­15


music on select days of the week, and patrons can enjoy happy hour specials in the bar and lounge area. At Luk Fu, guests can enjoy Asian-fusion favorites followed by the fun of karaoke. At the Event Center at Live! Casino & Hotel Philadelphia, a premier entertainment venue in South Philadelphia, a full roster of entertainment is being showcased this fall that includes iconic musicians such as Billy Ocean, and comedians and actors like Jay Mohr.

LIVE! CASINO & HOTEL PHILADELPHIA, PA At Live! Casino & Hotel Philadelphia, there is something for every guest’s unique nightlife and entertainment preference. Center Bar, located in the heart of the casino floor, is a hot spot to see, be seen, and let loose. The cocktail program at Center Bar is diverse, and includes high-end whiskeys, whimsical cocktails and specialty drinks. The venue also features free nightly live entertainment with some of the region’s best bands, DJs and performers. Top Zagat-rated steakhouse, The Prime Rib, features live

Acts include: magician and former Philadelphia Eagles long snapper Jon Dorenbos (October 1); pop and R&B legend Billy Ocean (October 6); comedian Jay Mohr (October 8); psychic medium Matt Fraser (December 10-11); and comedian Bobby Collins (February 18). The on-site event planning team can assist groups with bookings. Live! also offers plenty of action in its casino, including poker and a FanDuel Sportsbook, 11 dining outlets, plus multiple bars featuring a variety of international tastes for every palate. Situated in the city’s South Philadelphia Sports District, attendees also can experience the excitement of Philadelphia’s four major sports teams along with additional dining and entertainment options at Live’s adjacent sister property, Xfinity Live! Live! Philadelphia offers an assortment of team building opportunities, too, including learning table games such as blackjack, taking an art walk in the building, participating in chef tastings and more.

AWARD-WINNING CUISINE · LIVE MUSIC CHIC BAR AND LOUNGE · BEAUTIFUL PRIVATE DINING SPACE PRIMERIBPHILLY.COM

­16 September­z October­2022

PRIMERIBPHILLY

Such a diverse range of offerings helps to enhance a group’s experience, as it provides attendees numerous ways to interact and bond outside of a traditional meeting setting. The experienced sales team at Live! Casino & Hotel Philadelphia works with planners to provide guests with an outstanding experience.


MGM NATIONAL HARBOR NATIONAL HARBOR, MD MGM National Harbor is a top entertainment destination in the Washington, DC, Maryland, and Virginia area, featuring ample gaming space - including outdoor gaming - the BetMGM Sports and Lounge and more. The Theater at MGM National Harbor boasts cutting-edge lighting, video and sound, and, through the resort’s exclusive partnership with Live Nation, the theater has played host to some of the biggest names in entertainment, including: Mariah Carey, Cher, Bruno Mars, Chaka Khan, Aerosmith, and more. Upcoming shows at The Theater at MGM National Harbor include: Mike Epps (September 23-24); Marlon Wayans (October 15); ZZ Top (October 22); Maxwell (November 12-13); Penn & Teller (December 10); and Cirque Dreams Holidaze, an annual holiday show that combines a whimsical, Broadway-style musical with contemporary circus artistry (December 15-18). MGM National Harbor also offers multiple vibrant nightlife destinations. Felt Bar and Lounge features a dynamic indoor-outdoor concept that incorporates live music and a DJ with a spacious outdoor terrace offering views of the na-

tion’s capital, a stone fire pit and comfortable seating. At Blossom Cocktail and Lounge, guests can unwind with flavorful cocktails, freshly mixed drinks, micro and macro brews and creative shots. The state-of-the-art BetMGM Sportsbook and Lounge is home to a 360-degree jumbotron above the bar, with a 110foot wraparound screen, projecting games in all directions for an elevated viewing experience. The Spa at MGM National Harbor is a relaxing getaway that includes 11 luxuriously appointed spa rooms, a full-service salon, a fitness center, and other private amenities. The property’s swimming pool is a boutique-style relaxation area that is exclusive to registered hotel guests. It stays at 84degrees and is surrounded by 27 lounge chairs and a deck area. According to the property’s executive director of sales, Sheila Hession, “MGM National Harbor offers unrivaled amenities including 160,000-square feet of gaming space, bars, lounges, more than a dozen dining options, high-end shopping, a 3,000-seat theater, and over 5,000 complimentary self-parking spaces, offering guests world-class entertainment at their fingertips."

The Theater at MGM National Harbor in National Harbor, MD Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­17


ROCKY GAP CASINO RESORT FLINTSTONE, MD The Event Center at Rocky Gap Casino Resort hosts live entertainment each week from cover and tribute bands to magicians with shows for everyone to enjoy. Guests looking for a laugh can enjoy stand-up comedians hosted by Bonkerz Comedy. Lakeside Grille, the resort's premier upscale steakhouse, will introduce a variety of new seasonal menu selections this fall. After trying out a new dish, guests can head to the Event Center at Rocky Gap to take in performances by local cover and tribute artists who will have guests singing along to their favorite hits. The lineup of fall performances includes: Ole 97, a Johnny Cash and June Carter tribute; The Prince Project, a Prince and The Revolution tribute; and more. Bonkerz Comedy will feature comedians Shanell Renee, Kirk Bogos and others. “There is something for everyone to enjoy while visiting Rocky Gap Casino Resort,” says Brian Kurtz, senior vice president and general manager of Rocky Gap Casino Resort. “For guests looking to relax and unwind, the spa offers a variety of highend services such as massages and facials. A fitness center and indoor pool also are available year-round. During the fall months, the foliage around Rocky Gap turns from lush greens to vibrant reds, yellows and oranges – it’s really beautiful and can be viewed from almost anywhere on the property. Those looking for excitement and thrills can step onto the high-energy casino floor... Sharing these moments as a group at Rocky Gap Casino Resort is a great way to bond and create lasting memories.” Casino floor at Rocky Gap Resort and Casino in Flintstone, MD

­18 September­z October­2022


RESORTS CASINO HOTEL ATLANTIC CITY, NJ “Guests can enjoy the nightlife at Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville, one of Resorts Casino Hotel’s most popular stops,” notes Ritambra Verma, director of sales and revenue management for Resorts Casino Hotel. “The restaurant features a stage for nightly live entertainment, a tiki bar and Buffettinspired accent pieces throughout, including a giant blender at the restaurant’s entrance. A seasonal exterior deck on the Atlantic City boardwalk will allow guests to enjoy alfresco dining or a drink topped off with a gentle ocean breeze.” LandShark Bar & Grille is the only year-round full-service bar and restaurant on the sand side of the boardwalk in AC, and it features retractable walls to provide views of the ocean. The deck at the Landshark Beach Bar features a new bar for beachside parties, and guests can take their frozen drinks, beer and margaritas right onto the sand complete with a fire pit for nightly campfires and relaxing on new beach furniture. In the summer, both Margaritaville and LandShark feature live entertainment daily, and on Fridays and Saturdays the rest of the year. Located on the casino floor of Resorts, just steps from the hotel lobby, Bar One is a great place to unwind with a glass of wine or to turn up the action with specialty cocktails and either a DJ or live entertainment daily in summer, as well as on Friday and Saturday nights in the off-season.

Coming up at the Superstar Theater at Resorts Casino Hotel: on September 17, the Gilmour Project explores the music of David Gilmour’s Pink Floyd - a tribute band featuring not only the heavy psychedelic lift of audacious and beloved ‘Gilmour-centric’ Pink Floyd songs, but also rarities from David’s solo catalog; YYNOT is a Rush tribute band made up of award-winning performers, slated to rock the Superstar Theater on October 14; and Air Supply will perform here live on November 11. This summer, Resorts Casino Hotel remodeled its swimming pool and pool deck on the third floor of Ocean Tower, which offers sweeping views of the beach, boardwalk and ocean. This $4-million renovation added a 12-seat full-service bar and a state-of-the-art retractable roof to provide a worldclass pool experience year-round. Additionally, Resorts partners with Destination Philly A.C., a destination management organization that helps groups customize team building exercises, entertainment, transportation, recreational activities, themed events and more throughout Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey. One of their most popular team building experiences is the Amazing Race, where teams board chartered vehicles and set off throughout the city competing in custom challenges designed to highlight the best bites and sites of the destination. Resorts Casino Hotel also is home to award-winning dining, plus nightlife, entertainment, a range of special events and gaming opportunities to enhance any group’s experience. Bar One at Resorts Casino Hotel in Atlantic City, NJ

Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­19


CAESARS ENTERTAINMENT ATLANTIC CITY, NJ “The absolute hub of nightlife at Caesars Atlantic City is our Wild Wild West venue,” observes Steve Van Der Molen, vice president meeting operations, Caesars Entertainment AC Region. “It brings together live music, a saloon, our sportsbook, and Buck Wild Arcade. Harrah’s Atlantic City provides its own tropical spin on nightlife by transforming the property’s pool into a nightclub with its The Pool After Dark series. Over at Tropicana Atlantic City, we are continuously adding new additions to The Quarter, which already features 200,000-square feet of retail, dining, entertainment, and spa experiences, including an IMAX Theatre.” Several new restaurants are opening across these three properties through the rest of 2022. One of the most exciting is the opening of the iconic sushi restaurant Nobu Atlantic City at Caesars. Similar to its sister property in Las Vegas, Nobu Hotel Atlantic City will serve as its own hotel-within-a-hotel, with its own individual interior design elements, tower and suites. In addition, Gordon Ramsay Hell’s Kitchen, inspired by the hit competition show, just debuted at Caesars this summer, as well. “Just our location being on the boardwalk provides a host of unique opportunities for recreation or team building,” notes Van Der Molen. “Within the properties, we also have our spas and pools. One to highlight for larger groups is The Pool at Harrah’s. It’s under a 90-foot glass dome, so the weather is never a concern, and it can host up to 2,000 participants. We also can arrange volunteering events with local groups, and we have a variety of team building activities such as our onproperty escape room venue at Tropicana.” “Our expert team will work with you in providing a program that is genuinely exciting, which can be crucial for attendee engagement during a meeting or event,” Van Der Molen adds. “We’re constantly reinvesting into our offerings in Atlantic City to provide our groups with the most unique experiences in the Northeast.”

The Pool at Harrah's Atlantic City, NJ, part of Ceasars Entertainment ­20 September­z October­2022


BALLY'S ATLANTIC CITY, NJ Bally’s Atlantic City newest entertainment attraction is The Yard, which opened in late June of 2022 and features live entertainment. Also, the new Carousel Bar, a 360-degree rotating bar located in Bally’s newly renovated hotel lobby, offers a variety of favorite cocktails accompanied by a live DJ. Additional entertainment at Bally’s Atlantic City includes live boxing, televised by Showtime, and soon to be announced upcoming acts for fall and winter. The newly remodeled Bally’s tower includes 750 renovated hotel rooms with a design inspired by the heart and soul of the Atlantic City beach and boardwalk, and its fresh, relaxed summertime feel. The contemporary and clean design is reflective of a bright and soothing coastal environment. Bally’s expansive casino boasts all of the latest table games and slots along with FanDuel Sportsbook. The Bally’s Pool and Fitness Center, overlooking the boardwalk and Atlantic Ocean, offers a complete escape for unwinding after a day of meetings or to enjoy during an off day. Group and meeting attendees can take advantage of the variety of social and leisure opportunities at the property with everything under one roof. The Yard, Bally’s new meeting and convention venue, has the flexibility to accommodate all types and sizes of functions with a modern industrial design and open-air space that captures seaside views from every angle from both its indoor and outdoor space. A retractable roof can easily adjust to the weather for any season, plus there are two stages, contemporary audio, video and digital connectivity, as well as indoor, street, and boardwalk access.

NEW NEW NEW ROOMS

NEW NEW NEW RESTAURANTS

NEW NEW NEW MEETING SPACE THE YARD

A new indoor/outdoor meeting space with a retractable roof is available all year long! Accommodates over 1400 attendees. MEETING ROOM LEVEL

80,000 square feet of meeting space including: • 53,337 square feet of exhibit space • 25,162 square feet of meeting space 33 meeting rooms available Meeting and dining space is located on one level. Contact the Sales Department at Bally’s at 609-340-2233 or acsales@ballysac.com.

The Yard, a new entertainment and event space at Bally's Atlantic City, NJ

© 2022 Bally’s Corporation. BALLY, BALLY’S, the BALLY’S Logo, BALLY REWARDS, WELCOME TO THE BALLYVERSE, FOR FUN’S SAKE, and JUMP INTO THE THRILL are service marks and registered service marks of Twin River Management Group, Inc. and its a liates. Bally’s Atlantic City is a registered trademark of Bally’s Corporation. Must be 21 or older to gamble. Bet with your head, not over it. Gambling problem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER.

Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­21


MOHEGAN SUN POCONO WILKES-BARRE, PA Mohegan Sun Pocono, set on 400-acres in northeastern Pennsylvania, is one of the largest and most distinctive entertainment, gaming, shopping and dining destinations in the state. The property features live entertainment with local bands every weekend at Breakers, The Hive Taphouse and Molly O'Sheas, plus lots of laughs at Wise Crackers Comedy Club. The Keystone Grand Ballroom features top performers like Huey Lewis & The News and Danielle Bradbery, and only a short distance away, the Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza features the biggest acts in music, sports and more as well as being home to the AHL's Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins. Spa Sapphire, which is privately owned and operated, promises a luxury spa experience and state-of-the-art salon services at Mohegan Sun Pocono. Just steps from the casino floor are a number of outstanding food and beverage outlets.

­22 September­z October­2022


OCEAN CASINO ATLANTIC CITY, NJ Ocean Casino has a wide array of diverse and engaging headlining entertainment coming up at its Ovation Hall, including: 311 (September 16); The B-52s with KC & The Sunshine Band (October 15); ZZ Top (October 21); Barenaked Ladies (November 4); My Big Gay Italian Funeral (November 12); The Rascals (November 18); and Flo Rida (November 26). Additionally, nightlife acts at HQ Nightclub include: Cash Cash (September 17); Rick Wonder (September 23); Sam Feldt (October 1); Hugel (October 8); and Bob Moses (October 15).

1,800 guest rooms and suites including its new Blu Rooms; ample gaming entertainment options; plentiful meeting and convention space, including unique outdoor spaces like The Park; five upscale dining restaurants and 10 casual dining options; an expansive spa; six signature day and nightlife experiences; and a 4,500-seat concert venue. Ocean also is home to the world’s largest Topgolf Swing Suite and offers both land-based sports wagering and online gaming within the state of New Jersey.

Ovation Hall Theater at Ocean Casino Resort

“We feel Ocean’s top-notch service, prime location, restaurants, world-class entertainment venues, rooms and additional amenities position the property as a distinct choice for guests looking to take their meetings to the next level. All of these serve as a clear differentiator when clients are looking for an exclusive experience,” asserts Kelly Burke, SVP and chief marketing officer for Ocean Casino Resort. Ocean provides a Vegas-like experience, with everything under one roof. Spanning over 20 beachfront acres on the world-famous Atlantic City boardwalk, the casino resort features over

GO FOR BUSINESS. STAY FOR PLEASURE. • 160,000 square feet of private, flexible meeting space • 70,000 square feet Event Center • 20 meeting rooms on one dedicated level • 90,000 square feet of unique outdoor spaces set against a panoramic backdrop of the Atlantic Ocean • Voted Best Atlantic City Hotel by Travel + Leisure Magazine • 5 destination restaurants and 10 casual dining options • Year-round indoor/outdoor pool and renowned Exhale Spa & Bathhouse

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Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­23


Mountain

Mee

Silver Birches Resort on Lake Wallenpaupack, Hawley, PA in the Pocono Mountains; photo courtesy: poconomountains.com


etings For those in search of meeting destinations with plenty of outdoor recreation and ample opportunities for team building, scenic surroundings and all-season resort properties, mountain destinations are the perfect choice. With so many seeking outdoor adventure and peaceful settings, retreating to the mountains just makes a lot of sense.


Meeting room at The Lodge at Woodloch in Hawley, PA in the Pocono Mountains, PA

Kalahari Resorts and Conventions in the Pocono Mountains offers planners an easily accessible destination for their attendees that feels like it’s a world away. Just a few hours drive from New York City and Philadelphia, Kalahari boasts 205,000-square feet of flexible meeting space that can accommodate groups of any size. An allunder-one-roof destination, its amenities include everything needed for outstanding meetings and events. Kalahari features entertainment that includes admission to “America’s Largest Indoor Waterparks,” world-class dining, and a full-service spa. The surrounding Pocono Mountains have much to offer, too, regardless of the time of year. Many organizations hold events at Kalahari in the fall to enjoy the picturesque changing foliage, while others choose to come in the spring when the weather is so enticing. Summer and winter offer a large variety of great activities, both indoors and outside.

to escape the hustle bustle of daily life. The resort is spread across 1,500 expansive acres and is an ideal place to rediscover nature and explore the great outdoors. Additionally, with over 30 different activities and amenities offered daily, there is truly something for everyone in the group. Many of Woodloch's activities and amenities take place outdoors and highlight the beauty of its surroundings, such as hiking, biking, boating, fishing, snowshoeing, snow tubing, and ice skating. The resort also has a variety of local naturalists, herbalists and survivalists available for specialty classes, tours, outdoor excursions and nature walks. Additionally, its inclusive packages, complete with accommodations, meals, activities, amenities and entertainment, make for a seamless experience for groups - and all the planning can be done by the Woodloch team.

Nature is an integral part of the Pocono Mountains experience. Outdoor features at Kalahari include an on-site hiking trail, ropes course, miniature golf, zip-lining and more. There is something for everyone to experience while enjoying the beauty of the Poconos.

Daily activities and amenities include: go karts, bumper cars, indoor swimming pool, a sports complex, year-round ice skating, and a Broadway-style theme show, to name a few. The property also boasts an 18-hole, championship golf course at Woodloch Springs, as well as its world-renowned destination spa, The Lodge at Woodloch, which offers an array of fitness classes in addition to a 40,000-square foot spa.

Another Pocono Mountains resort, Woodloch’s scenic mountain location makes it a popular choice for groups wanting

According to Brian Bossuyt, executive vice president of the Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau, “The Pocono Mountains

­26 September­z October­2022


TOGETHER IS A GREAT PLACE TO BE.

Try Woodloch’s new team building activity: The Food Truck Challenge Test your design and marketing strategy skills in this timed event to win over a panel of judges. Each team will receive a food basket, a secret ingredient and access to a pantry to create a delicious dish for everyone to sample. It’s not all about the food however- you will create and design a food truck, business name, marketing plan and menu. Are you ready? Let the challenge begin!

“When it was time to leave the resort, it felt like I was leaving home, and I really didn’t want to go!” -Danielle, Google “I can’t say enough great things about my experience with Woodloch. Each year, our company plans an annual retreat to escape the day-to-day for a few days and enjoy activities and bond with our colleagues.” -Erin, SeatGeek WOODLOCHMEETINGS.COM | 800.453.8263


The Mountain Coaster at Camelback Resort in the Pocono Mountains, PA

Camelback Resort in the Pocono Mountains welcomes groups with a team of experts who can help plan exciting adventures at the resort. Splash and slide inside at Aquatopia Indoor Waterpark where it’s always 84-degrees, head outdoors with Camelback Mountain Adventures, home to Pennsylvania’s only Mountain Coaster and more, get totally tubular in winter at SnowTubing where the lanes are lightening fast and the post adventure waffles are piping hot, or hit the slopes through 166-acres on 39 trails. Explore in Ultimate Terrain Vehicles and navigate the picturesque Pocono mountain-scape and trail area, or ride through the forest on off-road Segway tours featuring magnificent views. TreeTop Adventure takes the outdoor experience to new heights with rope swings, tight ropes, cargo nets, ziplines, and tree ladders. Or try Axe Throwing guided by expert coaches.

comes fully-equipped with conference and meeting facilities fit for your next corporate meeting, team building event or conference.” “The region has technologically advanced meeting facilities offering high-speed wireless Internet, state-of-the-art audio-visual equipment, and a full spectrum of amenities you have come to expect, which include on-site fitness centers and professional spas,” Bossuyt continues. “The Poconos is situated along the Delaware River with national park properties and numerous state parks and forests, and provides the perfect mix of adventure with meeting facilities that have all the amenities.” For pre- and post-attendee activities or team building events, the Poconos is a four-season destination that includes golf courses, horseback riding, whitewater rafting, hiking trails, skiing, snowboarding, snow tubing and both indoor and outdoor waterparks. “Our four-county region is bigger than the state of Delaware with varying locations for meetings that provide privacy and intimacy or a true connection to the local scene, including cultural events and small-town charm,” explains Bossuyt. “If groups choose to stay on property and enjoy activities, enjoy wellness programs or they want to venture out on the surrounding trails, waterways and into downtowns, they can do so easily. Planners can pick and choose the right makeup for each group experience depending on the needs of those ­28 September­z October­2022

visiting, whether for a few days or a longer period of time. Not to mention the views, crisp and clean air and general pace of life in the Poconos provides a respite from the dayto-day operations of a busy life.” Zip-lining is a great activity for groups, as is the mountain coaster at Camelback Resort, fall foliage chair lift rides, skiing, snowboarding, and snow tubing, too. The Pocono Mountains are located along the storied Appalachian Trail, so groups can hike parts of it and capture views along the Delaware River while connecting with nature in state and national parks that are dotted throughout the region. “We also have this wonderful blog (poconomountains.com/blog) that highlights the Pocono nightlife, Pocono Beverage Trail, festivals, axe throwing, escape rooms and more,” Bossuyt adds. Rocky Gap Casino Resort is located in Flintstone, MD in picturesque Rocky Gap State Park, surrounded by natural beauty and lakeside views. “By being in the middle of the park, we position the casino resort as a convenient starting point for all the area’s best activities and a comfortable place to rest at the end of an adventurous day,” says Brian Kurtz, senior vice president and general manager of Rocky Gap Casino Resort. “We can recommend the best nearby hikes, coordinate canoe, kayak and paddle board rentals, and even set groups up with fishing gear to go catch largemouth bass in the adjacent Lake Habeeb.”


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Skytop Lodge, Skytop, Pa.

As the seasons change, the foliage around the resort turns from green to deep reds, yellows and oranges that guests can take in from almost every window on the property. “Escaping to the mountains always feels like hitting the refresh button,” notes Kurtz. “It’s a return to the simpler elements of life, allowing guests to disconnect from the normal day-to-day grind and reconnect with the outdoors and each other. When mountains, dense forests and expansive lakes are the backdrop, it makes any meeting more enjoyable. And after work is done, the whole group can get outside for a scenic walk, bike ride or other group activity.”

of natural beauty with a variety of urban and outdoor adventures. Virginia’s Blue Ridge boasts over 650,000-square feet of unique meeting space and over 1,000-miles of outdoor trails, along with affordable amenities and mountain views in every direction.

“Between taking in the fresh air, watching the leaves turn and being active in nature, we always see groups leave here feeling rejuvenated no matter the season,” Kurtz adds.

Arts and cultural attractions such as the Center in the Square and Taubman Museum of Art double as unique meeting facilities and can be found just minutes from miles of hiking, biking, and paddling trails. In addition, planners can complement any meeting or event with a wide selection of local flavors, as there are more restaurants per capita here than any other destination in Virginia. The Roanoke Valley boasts exceptional flavors at many local restaurants that feature ingredients grown on local farms and new twists on Southern cuisine.

In the warmth of summer, guests of Rocky Gap take part in boating, fishing or kayaking on the lake. In fall, the vibrancy of the foliage is worth the trip alone and can be enjoyed while talking business on the resort’s Jack Nicklaus Design Golf Course or while sitting on the patio roasting s’mores at outdoor fire pits and playing a friendly game of cornhole.

Guests are never far from a relaxing view of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. Whether on the golf course, in a unique outdoor space, or at a convention center, mountains serve as the scenic backdrop for any meeting. Attendees can relax among peaceful scenery or find an outdoor leisure activity only moments away.

“In the evenings, groups can check out a comedy show or live musical performance at the Rocky Gap Event Center,” Kurtz observes. “With the ageless Appalachian Mountains as backdrop, any and every activity is memorable.”

Virginia’s Blue Ridge has an array of unique meeting facilities with both indoor and outdoor experiences. The region also features a variety of outdoor activities for all comfort levels. With easy access to the Blue Ridge Parkway, Appalachian Trail, and Upper James River, anyone can pick up a hiking, biking, or water trail and enjoy the scenic beauty and peaceful surroundings.

The Roanoke Valley in Virginia’s Blue Ridge provides guests with a unique metro mountain experience, offering a blend ­30 September­z October­2022


Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­31


Located off the Blue Ridge Parkway, Explore Park has 14-miles of multi-use trails for hiking, biking, and paddling, as well as an aerial adventure course called Treetop Quest. For the craft beverage enthusiast, the VBR Cheers Trail features two-dozen stops for local craft beer, wine, and moonshine. History buffs will enjoy the nationally acclaimed Booker T. Washington National Monument and the National D-Day Memorial. Just 15-minutes from the city amenities of downtown Roanoke are miles of biking, paddling and hiking trails. Twin Creeks Brewpub is a historic tavern located in Explore Park. In 2022, the Roanoke River was voted #1 for USA Today’s 10Best Urban Kayaking Spots in North America. Outfitters like Roanoke Mountain Adventures can get groups set up for a relaxing and enjoyable float on kayaks or tubes. Secluded meeting locations, like the Preserve at Crooked Run, provide relaxing settings that are away from city noise and enveloped by scenic mountains, while offering enticing on-site recreational activities like clay shooting and fly fishing. The Greenbrier in White Sulphur Springs, WV appeals to groups of all sizes with its 200,000-square feet of flexible meeting space, including 40 breakout rooms and a 16,500-square foot exhibit hall. Its newly redesigned conference center features technology to meet any need. “America’s Resort,” Greenbrier features more than 55 indoor and outdoor activities, including world class golf, a world-renowned mineral spa and the nation’s only private casino, available exclusively to overnight guests and members. ­32 September­z October­2022


Team building activities, such as escape rooms, outdoor adventures like fishing, hiking, the gun club and an aerial adventure course are ideal for groups. Dating back to 1778, The Greenbrier has a history that includes visits from presidents and royalty, a secret Cold War bunker and more. Meeting in the mountain air at The Greenbrier provides groups with an opportunity to escape the pressures and distractions that can be found in bigger cities and more populated locations. The resort provides a private setting with over 11,000-acres that can be used for events of all sizes. The Greenbrier takes advantage of its mountain setting with activities like offroad driving, hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding that make the most of the surrounding terrain. Facilities such as Kate’s Mountain Lodge and Howard’s Creek Lodge provide rustic, yet refined options for entertaining, with views of the surrounding mountains.

Each of these resorts and destinations provide planners and attendees with ample opportunities to relax and recharge while also reconnecting with nature. From plentiful indoor amenities to varied outdoor recreational possibilities, mountain settings are an ideal choice for anyone who wants to escape the everyday and enjoy endless adventure. Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­33


Museums, Theaters and ­34 September­z October­2022


Attractions

The Please Touch Museum at Memorial Hall in Philadelphia, PA; photo courtesy: Brûlée Catering

Unique venues like museums, theaters, mansions, zoos and theme parks are more than just great ice breakers and conversation starters at meetings and events. These properties provide built-in entertainment, memorable settings and opportunities for fun that simply can’t be duplicated elsewhere. Oftentimes, the architecture of these venues not only is visually stunning, but lends itself to acoustically impressive experiences. For example, presenting from the stage of a theater with state-of-the-art lighting and AV and the audience in comfortable fixed seating, or holding a reception in a museum’s marble rotunda filled with music, mingling and merriment. “We have a ballroom that can be divided to offer a meeting on one side and a separate dining or cocktail area,” notes Richard D. Portney CPCE, director of the Farmhouse and Fern & Fable Operations, regarding Peoples Light Theater in Malvern, PA. “With events over 75, we close the restaurant, which allows for more breakout space for the meeting. All food and beverage is prepared in-house. We have a dedicated event coordinator that works with you from your booking until the end of the event, and we are quick to respond to questions and concerns.” In addition to the main ballroom at Peoples Light, there also is a pavilion and outdoor garden space that can be utilized during the warmer months. A 30-foot by 40-foot tent adjacent to the pavilion is available from April through November, as well. “We are the profit center for Peoples Light, which is a non-profit organization,” explains Portney, “so, all proceeds go directly to them to fund the arts, community Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­35


The Prima Theatre in Lancaster, PA

programs and events for special needs individuals and children. We have plenty of convenient parking onsite.” The venue also features plenty of natural light and offers flexibility in creating new menus and stations, as well as a variety of table designs. “Our spaces offer great meeting views and we have Wi-Fi and state-ofthe-art AV available.” Located on the National Mall in Washington, DC, the Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History offers a memorable and unique venue for events. “You and your guests can explore galleries that bring the natural world to life while enjoying an unforgettable evening,” explains Tina Karl, director of special events for the museum. “With our unparalleled collections and monumental architecture, we are a premier site for after-hours special events.” Its soaring, four-story Rotunda, designed in the BeauxArts style and featuring Henry, the iconic African Bush Elephant, provides a spectacular setting for receptions or seated dinners. For gatherings of up to 2,500, groups also can utilize the Ocean Hall, Fossil Hall, ­36 September­z October­2022

Mammal Hall and Hall of Geology, Gems and Minerals (home of The Hope Diamond). “Where else can you dine with a dinosaur, party with a pachyderm or dazzle your guests with diamonds? We’re at your service, ready to provide expert arrangements in a variety of dramatic settings, intimate or expansive, in the world’s largest natural history museum - the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History,” Karl proclaims. “We've had the pleasure of hosting a variety of gatherings, from corporate meetings to local non-profits' celebrations, to wedding receptions and more,” observes Mitch Nugent, founder, executive artistic producer, Prima Theatre in Lancaster, PA. A non-profit organization, Prima Theatre boasts free parking, luxury seating for up to 200 guests, an in-theatre bar, and proximity to top hotels and attractions. With state-of-the-art technology (lighting, AV, movie theatre-size film screen, and complimentary Wi-Fi), the property is highly appealing for its technology integration.


In addition, this climate-controlled blackbox theater offers a blank slate that easily can be transformed to fit a planner’s creative vision, yet is well suited to host any gathering as it is. Behind the scenes is a catering kitchen, a stage with on-site instruments for special presentations, and dressing rooms with private bathrooms. “Time and time again, events at Prima are remembered for being well-curated experiences in an intimate environment,” says Nugent. “Planners can avoid a stale location and, at the same time, stay clear of venue operators that lack the goods and understanding of what it takes to pull off a remarkable event… At Prima Theatre, we love providing an environment where bold and beautiful experiences can thrive.” At Independence Seaport Museum in Philadelphia, PA, its location helps to inspire a truly unforgettable experience for attendees. Planners won’t find another place with the same waterfront views in the city. The museum boasts a great atmosphere and is nestled between two

Henry the Elephant in the lobby of the Smithsonian Institute's Museum of Natural History in Washington, DC

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Liberty Hall at the Museum of the American Revolution in Philadelphia, PA; photo courtesy: Brûlée Catering

bridges, the Ben Franklin and Walt Whitman, is situated right off of Interstate-95, and is within walking distance of multiple hotels along the waterfront and in Philadelphia’s Old City neighborhood. Inside, the Independence Seaport Museum offers a variety of spaces, all customizable to meet the planner’s specific needs. The Rooftop Ballroom showcases views of the Delaware River and the surrounding area. An attached terrace serves as the perfect satellite location in the warmer months for any space being rented at the museum, including the ballroom. This versatile space can be used for large group meetings, as a breakout room, for lunch or dinner, and more. For presentations, the venue also has a theater that can accommodate up to 500 people, and Independence Seaport Museum partners with an AV company to ensure that events run seamlessly. A first-floor gallery space is ideal for a cocktail reception or intimate dinner. In addition, planners can add customizable options to events that will have their guests exploring award-win­38 September­z October­2022

ning exhibits, climbing aboard Cruiser Olympia (the oldest floating steel warship in the world), or paddling in a swan boat at Paddle Penn’s Landing (a protected basin behind the museum) in the warmer months. Brûlée Catering serves as the exclusive caterer for a number of landmark locations and cultural institutions throughout the city of Philadelphia, including Memorial Hall, circa 1876, home to the Please Touch Museum, which offers both daytime meeting spaces and a whimsical, fun backdrop for evening events. Who wouldn’t want to ride a classic carousel or wander through Wonderland between bites? The Museum of the American Revolution offers stateof-the-art facilities for conferences and receptions with AV capabilities in each event space for panel discussions, all day events, or board meetings. There also is the added benefit of having event space on a separate floor from exhibits, providing a level of privacy. The National Constitution Center, in the heart of Old City, features views of Independence Mall and a capacity for over 1,000 guests with both indoor and outdoor options. Its Grand Hall Overlook offers a large screen


that is ideal for presentations or for displaying event visuals. Choosing venues like these provides the opportunity to pair the event with the exhibits and experiences that would be offered along with museum admission. For instance, at the Museum of American Revolution, there is the option to break up a daytime meeting by offering exhibit access to guests, or, for evening receptions, adding private shows in the George Washington War Tent. There even is the opportunity to bring in museum educators for bite-sized history lessons throughout the event. At Please Touch Museum, groups can host interactive, team building exercises that incorporate design, thinking and creative “play” for adults. Brûlée Catering works closely with event planners to understand their vision and help customize just the right menu. Whatever the theme, sales managers for

Brûlée can help guide planners to the right menu selections and will ensure that guests won’t leave the event hungry. Each sales manager has direct access to the culinary team should an event have dietary restrictions of any kind. For groups looking to host all-day events, Brûlée provides seamless all-day service, from coffee and light breakfast to mid-morning breaks, and all the way through dinner and drinks. At any point in the day, there is the option to have food and beverage available. When hosting out-of-town guests, the culinary team at Brûlée can incorporate a signature “Philly” flair to the menu, including offerings like cheesesteaks, Philadelphia soft pretzels, and water ice. Each of its venues have a list of preferred vendors who can collaborate with the in-house and catering teams, meaning that Brûlée always is at the ready to connect planners with vendors who they trust and work with frequently.

our passion is food, our clients are family MEMORIAL HALL c. 1876 FREE LIBRARY ON THE PARKWAY MUSEUM OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION NATIONAL CONSTITUTION CENTER THE MET PHILADELPHIA THE LIBERTY VIEW DILWORTH PARK MOULIN i n q u i r i e s @b r ulee- cat er ing . com | (215) 9 2 3 -6 0 0 0

Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­39


WORKING TOGETHER Independence Seaport Museum is a “Must See” when considering a scenic destination venue for a special, private event in Philadelphia. Located along the Delaware River waterfront, this one-of-a-kind facility can host corporate meetings or social events and features panoramic views, including from outdoor terraces and tented balcony spaces that overlook the Ben Franklin and Walt Whitman Bridges. The museum accommodates events of all sizes in its Rooftop Ballroom. Additionally, an on-site theater is perfect for conferences, product presentations and theatrical productions. Collaborating closely with preferred vendors, Independence Seaport Museum will customize events according to the planner’s interests, vision and budget. Recently, Sage Catering announced a new partnership with the museum. “We are thrilled for this new venture and all the incredible events we will execute together,” exclaims Dana Twaddell, VP and senior event planner for Sage Catering. “Sage already has successfully completed corporate events and fundraisers at the museum. We have weddings booked into 2024, and we are expecting to see even more bookings before the end of the year.” Sage Catering provides guests with quality seasonal food and impeccable service for social and corporate events, fundraisers, holiday parties and formal galas. “We work with the Independence Seaport Museum to bring the client’s vision to life. Our goal is to create an experience that is unique and personalized,” Twaddle adds.

The city of Saratoga Springs, NY may be relatively small in size, but there is no shortage of live music, theater, or events in town. The iconic Saratoga Performing Arts Center (SPAC) once was named the Best Outdoor Music Venue in a USA Today 10 Best readers’ poll. Each summer, SPAC plays host to one of the most respected and popular Jazz Festivals in the United States, and it is the summer home of the New York City Ballet, Philadelphia Orchestra, and the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. And every summer, Live Nation acts like Dave Matthews Band, Phish, Luke Bryan, and more fill the amphitheater and surrounding grounds. Numerous galleries are found in the Beekman Street Arts District and Downtown Arts District, including Saratoga Arts, a non-profit organization that presents gallery exhibits, art classes, and performances. Skidmore College boasts the Arthur Zankel Music Center and the Tang Teaching Museum, and offers music and dance performances all year long. Saratoga also is home to Caffe Lena, America’s longest continuously operating coffeehouse and an intimate, not-for-profit that features worldclass concerts in a 110-seat performance space. Additional local cultural attractions include: Yaddo; Opera Saratoga; Pitney Meadows Community Farm; C.R.E.A.T.E. Community Studios; and the Home Made Theater.

­40 September­z October­2022


Unique venues like these provide exciting options for those in search of memorable spaces for meetings, events and group outings. Whether choosing a theater stage, a museum gallery or a rooftop terrace overlooking the city, planners can offer one-of-a-kind settings and experiences that will delight and entertain attendees.

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The Farmhouse at People’s Light is the premier venue in Chester County for private events. From our cathedral ceilings and fabulous dance 昀oor to customizable packages and endless photo ops, we have everything you need for an unforgettable celebration. 39 Conestoga Road Malvern, PA 19355

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Winter Adventures & Holiday Happenings

­42 September­z October­2022


s As summer fades into fall, the winter weather and holiday season soon will arrive here in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast Region. But the start of winter doesn’t mean the end of fun and adventure. Destinations up and down the Eastern Seaboard are offering plenty to see and do in the coming months.

Christmas on the Potomac at Gaylord National in National Harbor, MD

From the Virginias to New England, activities abound as the crisp autumn air gives way to the season’s first snowfall. Whether groups are looking to get out on the slopes, enjoy quaint and picturesque towns, get geared up for the holidays, or enjoy festivals and unique experiences, there is plenty to see and do for groups and individuals alike. Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­43


Holiday Lights at Peddler's Village in Lahaska, Bucks County, PA; photo credit: Allure West Studios

Winter in the Sullivan Catskills of New York is filled with beauty and wonder. The snow-filled landscapes bring scenic views and ample opportunity for recreation. Properties here offer downhill and cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, ice fishing, and ice skating so there are plenty of opportunities to get outside and enjoy the fresh air. Take in the light displays at Peace, Love & Lights at Bethel Woods Center for the Arts. Running on a partial schedule from November 25 through December 11, and then daily December 15 through January 1, 2023, visitors can experience this drive-thru holiday display on the Bethel Woods grounds. There are opportunities to “Cut Your Own Tree” at a local tree farm and enjoy the fresh scent of pine during the holidays. Or discover the bald eagle, as the Sullivan Catskills are home to the second largest nesting population in New York State. These majestic birds stand out against the bare branches during this time of year. “Holiday shopping pop-ups are found each weekend throughout our Sullivan Catskills where you can find locally-made wares, perfect for holiday gifting,” explains Roberta Byron-Lockwood, president and CEO, Sullivan Catskills Visitors Association. “Canal Towne Emporium, a nearly two-century-old country store that is historic, charming and rustic, transforms into a Christmas shop. And back indoors, we have some of the finest fireplaces to nestle in on a cold winter’s eve.” ­44 September­z October­2022


Meet in Chester County Corporate meets Countryside

New meetings reserving 25+ rooms receive a $500 booking bonus. Contact Courtney Babcock for more information. Courtney@BrandywineValley.com | 484-840-7213

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Saratoga also offers plenty of open land for sledding, and the Saratoga National Historic Park has designated hills for snow tubing and tobogganing as weather

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In addition to Spa State Park, there are several places to ice skate in the Saratoga area, both indoors and outside. The Saratoga Springs Ice Rink, for example, is suitable for both ice skating and ice hockey.

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Saratoga Spa State Park offers 12-miles of trails for cross-country skiing, many of which are near to natural mineral springs. For just $10, rent some snowshoes and head out for an all-day adventure. Or, enjoy two ice skating rinks located in front of the Victorian Pool.

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Meet in an extraordinary Village.

• Ample meeting space • Elegant 66-room inn • 60+ shops • Multiple restaurants & eateries • Beverage tasting rooms • 14-passenger shuttle • Indoor entertainment center

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Winter in Saratoga Springs, NY offers plenty of activities like snowshoeing or cross-country skiing in Saratoga Spa State Park, sledding, ice skating, an outdoor ice bar experience with specialty cocktails, plus plenty of places to celebrate the season, enjoy a chilly adventure, or settle in for a cozy indoor retreat.

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“We will have winter travel packages so you can experience the Sullivan Catskills fully during the wintertime,” says ByronLockwood. “Stay by a cozy fireplace, snowshoe on trails, and enjoy a complimentary breakfast. We have customizable food and beverage experiences. Explore our Good Taste Beverage Trail and warm up with a local whiskey.”

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Many large properties can host groups here, from the Villa Roma to Resorts World Catskills, and offer excellent amenities, world-class dining, inventive cocktails, and more. Escape the cold at The Kartrite Resort & Indoor Waterpark, with the latter kept at 84-degrees yearround. This laid-back resort is just fivemiles from winter sports at Holiday Mountain Ski & Fun.

Add charm to your business meetings in our unique venues and interesting atmospheres, or pair traditional hotels and meeting spaces with our vibrant attractions and team building options.

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For inquiries, contact Brian Shields at 215-794-4062 or bshields@peddlersvillage.com PeddlersVillage.com

Bucks County, PA

Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­45


Gallery Row in Lancaster, PA; photo courtesy: Discover Lancaster

permits. Saratoga RV Park offers winter campsites where visitors can enjoy the beauty of winter days (and nights) and head on out to the snowshoe trails available to guests. Reserve a heated pod (those igloo-looking bubble tents) at Prime at Saratoga National and enjoy a unique food and beverage experience. For some indoor fun, take a clay sculpting class at Saratoga Clay Arts Center or try a ceramics class at Creative Sparks and Balloonatics. Plus, there are plenty of museums for art lovers, history buffs, dance devotees, and even car enthusiasts to be explored. The Children’s Museum at Saratoga offers hands-on and interactive exhibits in their new location at Lincoln Baths, and the National Museum of Racing offers a state-of-the-art Hall of Fame experience. Check out a live performance at Universal Preservation Hall, a former church reimagined after a $14-million renovation in 2020. Skip the cinema and enjoy a show at Home Made Theater, a community theater with a professional edge. In addition, Saratoga County is home to craft breweries, wineries, and distilleries for an innovative craft cocktail, a thirst-quenching craft beer, or a full-bodied wine. The Saratoga New Year Fest takes place December 31 and January 1 with family-friendly activities and live music (including a multiple Grammy winner). Dis­46 September­z October­2022


cover Saratoga’s Annual Chowderfest is one of the area’s most highly anticipated events of the year and will take place February 11, 2023. The Flurry Festival, one of the largest folk dance and music festivals in North America, draws roughly 4,500 attendees and 400 performers each February to Saratoga. The Saratoga Fat Bike Rally takes place every year in February, too, with fat bikes, community, giving, and good beer. Speaking of beer, Saratoga Beer Week takes place every February at the Saratoga Springs City Center and includes the Saratoga Beer Summit, a fullday event with over 125 different craft beers available. On November 18, Vintner Wonderland Returns to the 158-year-old historic Renault Winery Resort & Golf in Egg Harbor, NJ, notes Kevin P. McCarty, the resort’s general manager. “We have a full slate of family-friendly events and holiday activities, including: ice skating on our outside rink; fire pits and champagne bubbles to enjoy while dining outdoors; live music; events such as Storytime with Santa, Brunch with Santa, Cookies & Cocktails, Gingerbread Cookie Decorating, Tree Lighting with Santa and more.” New for 2022, Vintner Wonderland can serve an outstanding business tool, observes McCarty. The rink can be rented for private events, bulk tickets can be purchased as gifts for employees or clients, or they can be bought and resold as part of an organizational fundraiser. “The best part about Renault is there is something for everyone,” McCarty exclaims. “Family fun, great for a girls’ getaway weekend or a day tip, Renault really has it all. Historic wine tours and tastings, interactive culinary events that will teach and tantalize your taste buds at the same time. With a 55-room hotel on property, all events turn into a getaway with award winning accommodations.” Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­47


Snow covered trail in the Sullivan Catskills, NY; photo courtesy: Sullivan Catskills Visitors Association

Atlantic City, NJ is a great place to visit any time of year, and this winter is no exception. AC is home to a number of spas, features lots of shows and entertainment (such as The Midtown Men “Holiday Hits”), and offers plenty of fun places to visit, including: Lucky Snake Arcade & Raceway at Showboat Hotel; Little Water Distillery; The Seed: A Living Beer Project; Westecunk Axe Throwing; Topgolf Swing Suite at Ocean Casino Resort; The Atlantic City Experience at Jim Whelan Boardwalk Hall; the IMAX Theatre and Escape AC at Tropicana; and Tanger Outlets The Walk. “The winter season is the perfect time for a getaway to Atlantic City,” notes Larry Sieg, president and CEO, Meet AC. “We invite you to escape the cold winter days and take advantage of luxuriating at one of our world-class spas, explore our growing culinary scene, or take in a dazzling show. Group and family-friendly attractions such as Lucky Snake Arcade & Raceway, Westecunk Axe Throwing, and Topgolf Swing Suite are not to be missed. Not to mention, Tanger Outlets The Walk is just steps from the Atlantic City Convention Center and boasts more than 100 brand name outlets with incredible savings and tax-free shopping.” “We have a bustling meeting and convention season throughout the winter months,” Sieg continues. “Once the meetings are through, many attendees like to ­48 September­z October­2022


relax, mingle, and dine at one of Atlantic City’s fine dining establishments. Entertainment also is at the forefront in Atlantic City. Whether it be a concert, a comedy show, or dancing the night away at one of our night clubs, the options are endless. With these added amenities and offerings, an event organizer doesn’t have to worry about planning additional ancillary events outside of the show floor and meetings.”

"Staying at the Lancaster Marriott at Penn Square puts you right at the center of all the holiday fun and festivities,” Hans Schreiber, Lancaster Marriott and Convention Center

In historic Colonial Williamsburg, VA, the fifth annual Merchants Square Tree Lighting Ceremony will take place Friday evening, November 25 on the Duke of Gloucester Street in front of Danforth Pewter. Grand Illumination Weekends will take place over three consecutive weekends in December this year, with festivities beginning each Friday night that include the Lighting of the Cressets, 18th century entertainments, and a Celebration of the Yule Log, a holiday procession beginning at the Capitol and ending at the Magazine where guests will have an opportunity to make a wish and toss a sprig of greenery into the bonfire. Saturday evenings will include a dramatic presentation of an original holiday story, music, and an appearance by Father Christmas, culminating in simultaneous Grand Illumination fireworks displays over the Governor's Palace and Capitol building. The Williamsburg Inn offers its own annual Tree Lighting Ceremony that is available exclusively to Colonial Williamsburg Resorts guests. Snap postcard perfect photos and witness the illumination of thousands of lights at the inn. The affair will fea-

@jonlloydjr

it’s Time to meet in Lancaster Whether you’re looking to hold a small corporate retreat, a reunion, a convention, or any other event, Lancaster County offers a variety of fantastic meeting venues in a picturesque location that are perfect for any occasion. We have approximately 8,200 overnight rooms and 1,000,000 square feet of meeting space, state-of-the-art technology and all the amenities you’ll need for an on-the-road office. Let us help you find the perfect venue. Contact cackerman@discoverlancaster.com

DiscoverLancaster.com

Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­49


ture musical performances and special guests. In addition, there will be caroling, a gingerbread house display, and Santa featured in the hotel lobby throughout the holiday season. Colonial Williamsburg is a living history museum that encompasses part of the historic district within the city of Williamsburg. As a modern-day representation of the Revolutionary-era town, guests can watch craftspeople and artisans recreate their trades, take interactive tours of monumental buildings and be escorted to dinner by fifes and drums or taken by a horse-drawn carriage. The Williamsburg Inn and the nearby Williamsburg Lodge offer indoor and outdoor event space, and The Spa of Colonial Williamsburg was designated as a four-star retreat by Forbes Travel Guide in 2021. The resort also is a premier golf destination. Among the top 100 public golf courses in the country, The Golden Horseshoe Golf Club honors the classic traditions of the game while offering modern amenities. Lancaster, PA is an ideal holiday destination. Its bustling downtown center blends with small town charm making visitors feel like they have stepped right into a Hallmark movie. Check out the Mayor’s Tree Lighting in Penn Square on November 25, and Menorah Lightings throughout Hannukah from December 18-26. Santa will be dropping by Lancaster on December 9,10, 16 and 17. For those traveling with kids, Dutch Wonderland transforms into Dutch Winter Wonderland with thousands of lights, fun rides and attractions, and more from November 19 through December 31. “Throughout the season, you can marvel at beautiful holiday lights at the Christmas Spirit Light Show, an exciting, oneof-a-kind Christmas light display that ­50 September­z October­2022


your whole family can enjoy right from your vehicle,” explains Hans Schreiber, director of sales and marketing, Lancaster County Convention Center and Lancaster Marriott at Penn Square. “Need to do some last-minute holiday shopping? The Tanger Outlets are your all-encompassing spot to check off gifts for everyone on your list.” Lancaster has something for everyone, Schreiber adds. “So, whether you’re traveling as part of a conference or work event, with your family, if you’re here for a wedding, or just for a winter getaway, there’s a piece of Lancaster for you to explore.” The Lancaster Marriott is located in the center of historic downtown Lancaster, just steps from shopping, art galleries, breweries, the Central Market, and more. It also is home to two dining destinations: Plough, which features a menu that simultaneously celebrates Lancaster’s rich cultural roots while embracing a new era of modernity; and The Exchange, a rooftop restaurant showcasing views of downtown and the surrounding countryside along with cocktails and a roaring fire top table and heaters. Historic Fulton Theater is showing White Christmas this year from November 17 December 31. Start off with pre-show dinner and drinks at Plough and then head to the theater for an evening of festive song, dance and joy.

Flexible Contracts | National Partnership Program In-House A/V | Catering Available

“Staying at the Lancaster Marriott at Penn Square puts you right at the center of all the holiday fun and festivities,” says Schreiber. “You’re never more than steps away from something exciting. Plus, the Lancaster Marriott and Convention Center are located within the same property, cutting down on travel time and making it easy to explore between meetings and to make the most of your time here.” Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­51


FRANK'S Wine & Spirits 1206 N Union St. Wilmington, DE 19806

800-AT-FRANKS FranksWine.com "The reasons people choose to drink non-alcoholic alternatives are endless. They range from pregnancy, medications and simply personal choice to recovery and everywhere in between. Many classic “mocktails” are sugar filled and extremely sweet. A benefit of the non-alcoholic spirits is that they have low calories and sugar or none at all, making them a perfect alternative to alcoholic beverage with the same great taste."

NA JALAPEÑO MARGARITA 1 oz Spiritless Jalisco 55 NA Tequila 3 oz DHOS Orange Liqueur 1 oz fresh lime juice Jalapeño Slices Tajin Seasoning

NA MANHATTAN 3 oz Spiritless Kentucky 74 NA Bourbon 1 oz Roots Divino Aperitif Rosso Splash of simple syrup Maraschino cherry to garnish Build in a coupe glass, stir, garnish with a cherry, and ENJOY!

Rim a glass using a lime slice and the Tajin seasoning. In a cocktail shaker, add the lime juice and jalapeño slices and muddle. Add the Jalisco 55 and the DHOS Orange and fill with ice. Shake well and strain into glass over fresh ice. Garnish with jalapeño slice and a lime slice. ENJOY!

Peddler’s Village in Lahaska, Bucks County, PA is celebrating its 60th anniversary this year with weekly giveaways that will continue through December. The Village is planning Scarecrows in the Village through October, as well as OctoberFeast, Apple Festival, and Holly Jolly Weekend. Peddler’s Village also offers Food Truck Thursdays, outdoor movie nights, scarecrow-making workshops, and its annual Gingerbread Competition and Display. Comedy shows and a Scarecrow Shuffle with Scoogie Events are planned, as well. Starting on November 18, Peddler’s Village will be illuminated with a million holiday lights, and Santa will arrive for a series of events to celebrate this festive season. Peddler’s Village offers a variety of space options, a wide range of culinary choices, spacious accommodations in an elegant country inn, creative team building, free parking, and a charming 18th-century-style setting with award-winning landscaping. Each holiday season, Gaylord National Resort in National Harbor, MD holds one of the largest Christmas celebrations on the east coast – Christmas on the Potomac. This year, the over-the-top holiday celebration includes ICE! featuring A

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There is so much to see and do this winter at destinations throughout the region. From light displays to weekend getaways to festivals to outdoor adventures, groups can enjoy countless activities and festivities of this winter. Christmas Story™, as well as a wide variety of festive activities like ice skating, snowball build and blast, ice bumper cars, ice tubing, photos with Santa and more. ICE! featuring A Christmas Story™ is brought to life using more than two-million-pounds of ice in the form of sculptures by a team of 40 world-class ice artisans from Harbin, China. In addition to ICE! and the other activities, Gaylord National will offer two stage shows: Cirque - Spirit of Christmas, and The Greatest Story Stage Show. “Gaylord National Resort is known for putting on one of the largest and most unique Christmas experiences on the eastern seaboard,” asserts Patrice Clayton, public relations manager for Gaylord National Resort. “From the array of holidaythemed activities like ice bumper cars, gingerbread decorating, ice skating, and more to ICE! - a stunning display of themed ice sculptures… there is nothing like Christmas on the Potomac.” “Groups visiting Gaylord National during the holiday season can supplement their meetings or activities with any of the events offered as part of Christmas on the Potomac,” Clayton adds. Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­53


Visual M Over the last two years, virtual events have come to the forefront of the event industry and were the main source of business during the pandemic. With the success of virtual events, a new expectation and business stream for hybrid events was created as we continue to see live events returning to full swing. Outside of the impact of COVID-19 and the fact that some audience members want to remain virtual, the primary reason we are seeing the continued popularity of hybrid events is convenience. The hybrid event space has made it easier for both attendees and speakers to be a part of multiple events without having to leave the comfort of their home. What previously would have been a multiday commitment to attend some in-person events is made easier from both a convenience and financial standpoint. Lastly, from an analytics perspective, Advanced Staging Productions has seen larger audiences being drawn to hybrid events compared to previously in-person only events. What used to be a 500-700 attendee in-person event can now become a 1,000-1,500 person hybrid event due to the convenience. ­54 September­z October­2022


Media & Hybrid Events courtesy of Advanced Staging Productions When it comes to the virtual aspect of hybrid events, however, it’s much more than simply logging in, turning on your camera, and presenting to an audience. With hybrid events, your virtual attendees are sitting at home with a lot of distractions and other competing priorities. You need to find a way to break through the noise and make it feel more like an in-person event for them, as well. Advanced Staging Productions has found with hybrid events that you need to treat the virtual aspect as its own production. It should not be an afterthought of your live event. With hybrid events, you need to understand that these are two separately produced shows and that both need appropriate attention.

that tell the presenter’s unique story and build upon the overall theme of the event. The best use of visual media in hybrid events involves a dedicated team to work with you from concept to completion following a process of collaboration. How you want your audience to feel when they walk out of your event is the big picture and should be at the forefront of your hybrid event. By understanding that hybrid events require two separate productions, you can ensure your audience will be engaged no matter how they attend your event. advancedstaging.com

We have found success in the use and development of our Visual Media team to better produce hybrid events. Utilizing visual media is all about using images – both still and moving – to create messages that connect presenters with their audience. There is nothing more engaging to an audience than a compelling, authentic, and visual story. With visual media, you can evoke the emotion you envision for your event and build that connection between both your virtual and in-person audiences. The most successful video production services Advanced Staging Production has found with hybrid events are either pre-recorded presentations, presenter walk-up videos, or brand videos Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­55


10 Trends ThaT everyone needs To Know abouT in 2022 The events and hospitality industries are busier than ever in 2022, and your venue is in a prime position to drive revenue. If you want to increase bookings, it’s important to be on top of the right trends that are dominating the industry. Here are 10 trends to be aware of in 2022.

1. Consumers are planning multiple events in advance: People are ready to party in 2022, and they’re partying a lot. In a consumer survey, 40 percent shared that they are planning between 3 to 5 events this year. And they spend a lot of time on the details to get these celebrations right, starting their event planning between 1 to 3 months in advance.

2. Event spending is going up: In 2021, 62 percent of consumers said they were budgeting $5,000 or less on events. This year, they’re spending an average of $6,947 per event. This means more profit for venues and vendors in the hospitality industry.

3. Birthday parties are the most popular reason for celebration: Whether they’re a milestone birthday or one of the years in between, birthdays are the top reason for holding events and celebrations. It’s not hard to see why - they’re easy to plan and can range from a group dinner to a buyout blowout. The upsell opportunities are limitless for birthday parties. Start with a basic bash and then offer extras like a signature cocktail, Instagrammable decor, or an over-the-top dessert.

4. Pictures (or videos) are worth a thousand words: In the social media world we live in, visuals dominate our day. Whether it’s Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, or a website, we are constantly looking at videos and photos that tell a story. Images and videos play an important role in consumers' decisions to book a venue. Photos and videos are two of the top five things consumers look for when selecting a venue. ­56 September­z October­2022


5. Response time matters: When consumers are planning events, they want to confirm details quickly. Venues need to act fast, as 92 percent of consumers said they would like a response within 48 hours. Don’t lose business because another venue was faster to respond.

6. Catering is in demand: Consumers who are holding events at home are looking to professionals to handle food and beverages. 62 percent of consumers said they’re using catering from a catering company or a restaurant for their events. That’s up from 51 percent of consumers in 2021 who said they were booking catering for their celebrations.

7. Repeat customers drive holiday event revenue: Corporate planners are all about loyalty when planning holiday events. 74 percent said they will be using a venue they have booked in the past to host holiday parties in 2022.

8. Hotels are the top choice among venues: When asked where they prefer to host their events, consumers said that hotels are their No. 1 choice. That’s a shift from 2021 data when a third of consumers said they wanted to hold events at home. When it comes to holiday celebrations, corporate event planners said that hotel venues are their first choice, and 68 percent of planners said that hotel accommodations are included in their holiday party planning.

9. Corporate bookings and business is back at hotels: Hotels are playing a big role when it comes to corporate travel, meetings, and events. 57 percent of consumers planned a trip for either business or business plus leisure travel last year. And for those who planned events at hotels, business events like meetings, conferences, and trade shows were in the top five types of events being organized.

10. You need event management software: What’s the best way for your venue to manage all of the tasks involved in event planning? Event management software can help you track everything, from leads to contracts to detailed documents to payments. A solution that tracks that plus allows consumers to book an entire event themselves is even better – 61 percent of consumers said they were moderately to extremely comfortable booking the details online. Take the information you’ve learned about these trends and apply them to your events business. Be sure to create event packages that appeal to consumer trends and create marketing that reflects what customers want. Finally, take the time to research the right software that can help you manage every aspect of the event planning process. Jonathan Morse is the founder and CEO of Tripleseat, a catering and event management platform used by more than 15,000 venues each day, enabling them to streamline the planning process and increase sales. www.tripleseat.com Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­57


Information for the Location Reports has been provided by the Convention and Visitors Bureaus, associations, organizations and properties listed (denoted by website) along with additional sources.

LocationReport

Washington DC washington.org

The Washington Monument towers above cherry blossoms in Washington, DC; photo courtesy: Destination DC

WHAT’S NEW Amtrak, the Federal Railroad Administration, and the Union Station Redevelopment Corp. have joined efforts to expand and modernize Union Station. The $10-billion project as currently envisioned includes a new east-west train hall and new passenger concourse. The Walter E. Washington Convention Center is the first convention center in the world to achieve the WELL Health-Safety Rating through the International WELL Building Institute. The designation focuses on operational policies, maintenance protocols, stakeholder engagement and emergency plans to address a COVID-19 environment now and into the future. The National Air and Space Museum began a major renovation of its building in December 2018, revitalizing the exterior and infrastructure, and transforming its exhibition and presentation spaces. The project is anticipated to be completed in 2025. The design process has begun for the addition of a 50,000-square foot learning center to the museum that will include a ground-floor restaurant, ­58 September­z October­2022


Capitol Suite bedroom at the Waldorf Astoria hotel in Washington, DC; photo courtesy: Destination DC

second-floor space for programs, and a third-floor terrace. The Smithsonian also is looking into adding an outdoor astronomy park on the eastern edge of the site. The $2.5-billion, mile-long world-class waterfront community and sustainable neighborhood along the Potomac River, The Wharf, is adding another 1.15-million square feet of mixed-use space to the District’s Southwest Waterfront. Phase two of the development is scheduled to open later this year, adding luxe residences, office space, a Pendry Hotel, 1.5-acre park at the Marshall Park Landing, 233 boat slips at the Wharf Marina, retail space, new restaurants, and two garages with over 1,000 parking spaces. The Waldorf Astoria Washington, DC, opened its doors in June of 2022 boasting Hilton’s first DC spa, and chef Jose Andres will open The Bazaar restaurant here in 2023. The belltower of this luxury hotel, managed by the National Park Service, offers a 270-foot observation deck, and boasts 38,000-square feet of event space. Salamander Hotel, formerly the Mandaring Oriental, is set to open this September with 373 guest rooms, enhancements and programming direction that defines the Salamander experience. In 2022, eight new hotels opened in Washington, DC, including the Courtyard by Marriott Washington DC Dupont Circle and the AC Hotel Washington DC Capitol Hill Navy Yard, which is set in a mixed-use development near Nationals Park and includes Smoke & Mirrors Rooftop Restaurant and Bar. The Renaissance Washington, DC Downtown Hotel debuted a redesign of its 70,000-square feet of event space in March, part of a phased $70-million renovation that includes ceiling lighting designed to emulate sunlight and features inspired by natural elements like the Potomac River. Situated in the heart of NoMa, the 292-room citizenM Washington DC NoMa opened in April as the city’s second citizenM hotel and will have a ground floor restaurant and meeting space. The Holiday Inn Express Washington DC Downtown also opened in April and features 247 guest rooms and meeting space on its top floor. The Morrow Washington, DC Curio Collection by Hilton is set to open this September and is projected to have LEED Silver certification, 203 rooms, outdoor event space, indoor and

outdoor food and beverage spaces, and a rooftop venue with views of the city. Opening this fall, Pendry Washington DC – The Wharf will feature 131 guestrooms, including 38 suites, three signature dining destinations, Spa Pendry, a rooftop swimming pool and bar, meeting and event spaces, a Curated Art Collection, Cadillac Ride & Drive Experience, and more. Selina, an independent hotel brand, is slated to open in late 2022. It has been designed in partnership with local artists and tastemakers and will include 178 guest rooms as well as curated local experiences. Opening in 2023, MOB Hotel is a stylish, Paris-based chain that is expected to open its first of five planned North American hotels in DC with 144 rooms and a rooftop space along with a restaurant, bar, and cinema. The Hilton Washington DC Capitol Hill opened in 2021 in the former Washington Court Hotel. The 267-room hotel's new look is inspired by the city and has event space that spans more than 20,000-square feet.

SUSTAINABILITY Sustainability is among DC’s leading sectors, as the city helps its businesses reduce their carbon footprints. Among many initiatives, the local government is committed to being the healthiest, greenest city in the U.S. with the Clean Energy DC Omnibus Act, which sets a mandate of 100 percent renewable energy by 2032. As a participant of the Global Destination Sustainability Index (GDS-Index), Destination DC continues collaborating to drive recognition of sustainable practices across the global events industry. Washington, DC was named the first LEED Platinum City in the World in August by U.S. Green Building Council because of its environmentally forward practices. Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­59


UNIQUE VENUES DC's historic, 5,000-square foot Franklin School building is now Planet Word, a high-tech museum dedicated to literacy and the love of language and is available to host private events and meetings. The contemporary Rubell Museum in Miami will open a new venue in Washington, DC, and feature exhibitions of works by American and international artists drawn from the Rubells’ collection of paintings, sculptures, videos, and photographs.

Planet Word Library, Washington DC.

International Spy Museum moved from Penn Quarter to L’Enfant Plaza with the new site featuring 140,000-square feet, more than double the space of its original building, and new interactive exhibits. The property also boasts a rooftop terrace, a ballroom, and Museum Lobby & Veil that showcases large-scale artifacts, floor-to-ceiling glass windows, and stunning architecture. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library has completed a $211-million modernization. The library includes a rooftop event space, a large auditorium and conference center, and a café.

LOOKING AHEAD

FOOD & DRINK John F. Kennedy Performing Arts Center’s renovated Terrace Restaurant offers views of the Potomac River and Lincoln Memorial. Its elegant bar and updated private dining room is a nod to Mad Men interiors. In early May, Michelin revealed four DC restaurants to claim their first stars: Albi, a Levantine open-kitchen concept in the Navy Yard; Oyster Oyster, Shaw’s plant-forward tasting room; Reverie, contemporary cuisine by chef Johnny Spero in Georgetown; and Chef’s Table at Imperfecto in the West End, where guests dine on elaborate tasting menus by Venezuelan chef Enrique Limardo.

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“The convention sales and services team attracts customers through connected positioning, focusing on the benefits of meeting in DC that no other city can claim - like access to policymakers, expert speakers and leaders in industries including tech, biotech/pharma, education and medical,” notes Melissa Riley, vice president of convention sales and services, Destination DC. “Like many major cities, Washington, DC’s overall recovery has been slower than some other rural or beach destinations... Our approach has been to focus on short-term and corporate business to help close the gap, as well as working closely with the associations headquartered in DC,” Riley adds. Destination DC is focused on understanding what the customer needs most and evaluating its role in that process. The DMO used the time during the pandemic to reinforce their value proposition to customers. “As clients are looking to meet with purpose, we will be implementing new ways for associations to leave a lasting impact on their host city,” explains Riley. “Through this framework, annual meetings can go beyond the short-term economic impact of the event itself and create lasting community change.”


MONUMENTAL MEETINGS JUST A STONE’S THROW FROM OUR NATION’S CAPITAL BOARD MEETINGS, CONFERENCES & GALA RECEPTIONS FROM 10 TO 1,000 PEOPLE

101 MGM NATIONAL AVE, NATIONAL HARBOR, MD 20745


LocationReport

VIRGINIA

ALX Atrium Rooftop in Alexandria, VA; photo credit: Laura Hatcher Photography; photo courtesy: Visit Alexandria ALEXANDRIA, VA VISITALEXANDRIA.COM “We love booking our board and other small meetings in Alexandria... We can choose from nearly all brands of hotels for hosting meetings. Our delegates enjoy being able to walk everywhere and can safely exercise along the beautiful Potomac Riverfront. And access to a wide variety of boutique and name-brand shops, diverse restaurants and pubs, and unique art and American history makes our meetings in Alexandria memorable,” notes Leslie Zeck, CMP, CMM, HMCC, director of meetings, International Association for Dental Research. FOOD & DRINK Hank’s Oyster Bar has migrated to the former Hank & Mitzi’s location in Old Town North, complete with a brand-new rooftop dining space and private event space, each with a capacity for up to 80 guests.

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The DEA Museum in Arlington, VA; photo courtesy: Arlington Convention and Visitors Service

WHAT’S NEW Hotel renovations and openings will proliferate in 2022 and beyond. Alexandria’s largest hotel property, The Hilton Alexandria Mark Center, just revealed the majority of its multimillion-dollar renovation, including to the property’s more than 55,000-square feet of meeting space, and the addition of a new café near the lobby. The former Holiday Inn Suites Hotel will be converted into the AKA Hotel, anticipated to open winter of 2022-2023. Lorien Hotel and Spa is now an independent hotel managed by Davidson Hotels & Resorts’ luxury collection, Pivot Division. The Lorien embarked on an updated modeling concept in 2022 with an “Elevated Dream State” theme and continuation of its overall luxury experience. The Brabo Tasting Room will reopen in late 2022 with a new concept. Additional guestroom updates and renovations in the lobby area, spa and fitness center also are slated for 2022. Unique venues like Building Momentum’s rustic pergola in The Garden or the new ALX Community – Atrium’s rooftop space are trending for unique meetings space venues. LOOKING AHEAD “With organizations returning to in-person meetings, Alexandria has been ideal for the small-mid size meetings. Over the last six months, organizations have rescheduled several events to meet in person and we have seen the number of meetings return to 2019 levels and, in some periods, surpass 2019 metrics,” observes Carla Bascope-Hebble, vice president of sales, Visit Alexandria. “Alexandria has continued to see a demand for in-person meetings as most venues allow organizations to ‘own’ the hotel space for their small- to mid-size meetings. With various associations in Alexandria giving their teams hybrid working options, we have seen a trend with off-site unique meeting space to convene or host a team building activity.”

ARLINGTON, VA ARLINGTONVA.US WHAT'S NEW It's an exciting time in Arlington, as visitors will notice quite a few new or newly-renovated spots around the county. The Ritz-Carlton, Pentagon City just went through a multimilliondollar redesign of its public spaces including the lobby, ballroom, meeting spaces and restaurant, Santé.

Earlier this year, the Westin Arlington Gateway announced that all its meeting spaces, including a boardroom and all pre-function areas, received a complete refresh. Similarly, Hampton Inn & Suites in the city’s National Landing neighborhood has undergone a complete renovation. Arlington House, The Robert E. Lee Memorial, reopened following a complete rehabilitation of the site and transformation of the visitor experience. The DEA Museum reopened in late 2021 after a two-year renovation. The museum, which originally opened in 1999, explores the long, dynamic history of drug use, misuse and law enforcement. A key component is the redesigned Wall of Honor. The Military Women’s Memorial reopened in May after six months of renovation. Galleries pay tribute to the three-million women who have defended the nation since the revolutionary war. FOOD & DRINK Buena Vista Gastrolounge is back with a modified name and a new concept in the Clarendon neighborhood. The entire restaurant now serves an unlimited tasting menu designed by Mexico City chef Jaime Pelayo. WHINO, a combination gallery and restaurant, opened a year ago on Ballston Quarter’s second level. LOOKING AHEAD “Arlington is known for its proximity and convenience to the nation’s capital, but our meeting planners soon realize there’s so much more to see and do,” said Portia Conerly, director of sales for Arlington Convention and Visitors Service. “From world-class shopping and diverse dining to a wonderful arts scene, visitors can get an entirely new capiMid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­63


Shenandoah National Park and Virginia's Blue Ridge Mountains; photo courtesy: Visit Charlottesville and Albemarle County, VA

FAIRFAX COUNTY, VA FXVA.COM WHAT'S NEW

tal experience right here in Arlington… Planners are especially interested in the variety of options at all levels for hotel meeting space, as well as the more unique options, such as Convene, with its bird’s eye view overlooking the DC skyline.” CHARLOTTESVILLE & ALBEMARLE COUNTY, VA VISITCHARLOTTESVILLE.ORG WHAT'S NEW The Charlottesville area has had several new venues and properties come online in the past two years, including: the Quirk Hotel Charlottesville, a boutique art hotel located in downtown Charlottesville. This property features meeting space, an expansive rooftop bar, and several dining options. Dairy Market is central Virginia’s first food hall and also has meeting space available at “The Brick Cellar.” Keswick Hall, a luxurious resort a few miles east of downtown Charlottesville, reopened in fall 2021 and has meeting space and a host of other amenities. It’s flagship restaurant, Marigold, is operated by world-renowned chef JeanGeorges Vongerichten. The Wool Factory opened in 2020 in a renovated historic textile mill along the banks of the Rivanna River and features function space and fine dining at its restaurant, Broadcloth. Construction is underway with plans to add a conference center at the University of Virginia by summer of 2024. The center also will include a 215-room hotel. Additionally, a Kimpton Hotel property is anticipated to open in spring 2023 adjacent to the Darden School of Business on the Grounds of the university.

Archer Hotel Tysons in Tysons, VA; photo credit: Kip Dawkins Photography; courtesy: Visit Fairfax ­64 September­z October­2022

Fairfax County has seen an impressive amount of new hospitality-related offerings in recent years. In 2021, the new National Museum of the United States Army opened to the public, the Army’s official museum that tells the story of the branch through the eyes of the Soldier. In 2022, a new Bob Hope exhibit will open. Also in 2021, Fairfax County welcomed Capital One Center, a new lifestyle entertainment complex that is home to a stateof-the-art performing arts center, Capital One Hall (with seating for up to 1,600 people), a 2.5-acre Skypark (11 stories above the Hall), a boutique hotel called The Watermark, and many retail and restaurant offerings. Skypark features an 18-hole miniature golf course, a Biergarten, amphitheater, and more, elevated among the skyscrapers of Tysons, VA. Two Archer Hotels – a growing boutique brand – have opened in the county, as well. Archer Tysons is a new build with an industrial chic atmosphere that features a large ballroom and adjacent terrace overlooking the city. Archer Falls Church is the anchor hotel for the bustling and trendy Mosaic District, offering easily accessible evening activities and local dining. In Fairfax, CrystalView is a stunning new event center that has opened for opulent and luxurious gatherings with a photogenic space centrally located in the region. And in 2024, Fairfax County will add a J.W. Marriott to its hotel portfolio in the Reston area. Finally, the long-awaited Metrorail Silver Line extension will open this fall, connecting the Northern Virginia region and


Event at Bluemont Vineyard in Loudoun County, VA; photo courtesy: Visit Loudoun

Washington, DC directly with the Washington Dulles International Airport. The extension not only will add a station at the airport, but also four additional stops in Fairfax County as well as two more in neighboring Loudoun County. LOOKING AHEAD Fairfax County is seeing a large increase in social gathering bookings, from weddings to reunions to girlfriend getaway trips. Youth sports tournaments also is a quickly rebounding market that is enjoying huge turnouts. On the association front, smaller regional meetings are becoming a bigger trend versus the larger national gatherings. HAMPTON, VA VISITHAMPTON.COM "Hampton is a waterfront city with a rich history… between Virginia Beach and Williamsburg, within a short driving distance to hundreds of world-class attractions," notes Yuri Milligan, director of media and community relations for the Hampton Convention and Visitor Bureau.

soar overhead and hands-on exhibits that trace the innovations of air and space. The venue has recently gone through a rebranding and has a new early learners gallery. The Virginia Seafood Agricultural Research and Extension Center in Hampton opened a new and expanded research facility in 2022 that can be toured by groups and works to support the future of the seafood industry in Virginia and beyond. LOUDOUN COUNTY, VA VISITLOUDOUN.ORG

WHAT'S NEW Opening this fall, the Hampton Virginia Aquaplex, adjacent to the Hampton Roads Convention Center and Hampton Coliseum, will be the largest of its kind in the state. Built for competitive aquatics, the Aquaplex was designed to host Mid-Atlantic and national competitive swimming and diving events, artistic swimming, water polo, and more. Spectator seating for 1,500 overlooks the eight-lane, 50-meter pool with two moveable bulkheads. The Aquaplex also features an outdoor water park that meet guests can utilize when not competing. Within an easy walk, the Hampton Roads Convention Center can offer additional exhibitor and event space. Hotel accommodations surround the Aquaplex, too. Also coming to Hampton this fall is Hampton Roads Harbor Tours. The Hampton Queen will offer two-hour sightseeing cruises departing from the downtown Hampton waterfront. The tour will include Hampton’s maritime and seafood history and offer views of Fort Monroe and Fort Wool, as well as destroyers and submarines at Norfolk Naval Base. Private charters will be available for groups, corporate events and team building activities. The Virginia Air & Space Science Center in Hampton is a unique event space with suspended aircraft that seem to

From the bike trail to the ale trail to scenic vineyard views and historic small towns, Loudoun is a must-visit destination for lovers of artisanal, epicurean and culturally rich experiences. The county is home to plenty of attractions for outdoor enthusiasts, too, and is a haven for foodies, beer and wine aficionados, and history buffs, as well. Explore Morven Park, the historic 1,000-acre estate of a former Virginia governor, the car-free Washington & Old Dominion Trail, or the rollercoaster section of the Appalachian Trail that runs along the slopes of the Blue Ridge Mountains. There also are multiple golf courses, water activities at Harpers Ferry Adventure Center, and zipline courses such as Empower Adventures. Additional team building opportunities can be found at iFly, and the whole family will love Leesburg Animal Park. Steeped in history and with a craft beverage scene few destinations can match, Loudoun County is filled with unique experiences. History and art lovers can visit the National Sporting Library and Museum, while thrill-seekers can try the aerial course at Summit Ropes or axe throwing at Axes and Os. The LoCo Ale Trail connects the urban breweries of Sterling, Ashburn and Leesburg in the east, with bespoke tap rooms and mountain-top beerhalls of the Blue Ridge offering views Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­65


Patio of the Big Lick Brewing Company in downtown Roanoke, VA; photo credit Jennifer Griffin; courtesy: Visit Virginia's Blue Ridge

of the Potomac, Harpers Ferry or the lush Piedmont below. There's live music most nights, trivia evenings, multiple Oktoberfest events, Virginia Craft Beer Month in August and an always warm welcome from local brewmasters eager to showcase award-winning pale ales, pilsners, stouts and more. The diversity, culture and vibrancy of Loudoun County has been key in promoting DC’s Wine Country®, as well. Located just 25-miles west of the nation’s capital, Loudoun County soon will become the last stop on the Metro’s Silver Line, and it is within driving distance of many East Coast destinations, yet it offers countryside views, over 40 wineries, outdoor spaces, and historic properties. Choose from 15 spas and wellness centers in Loudoun that will help guests to relax, unwind and soothe their senses. Salamander Resort & Spa is a timeless destination in historic Middleburg, a quintessential town steeped in equestrian traditions. A Forbes Five-Star resort, it combines artfully designed facilities with outstanding experiences on 340-acres framed by the Blue Ridge Mountains, vineyards, and horse farms. The resort features 168 guestrooms and suites - all with scenic views of the countryside. Truly dedicated to health and wellness, its spa offers 14 treatment rooms and a private outdoor courtyard with a heated swimming pool. Ziplining, tennis, nature hikes, archery, and an abundance of other outdoor activities provide ample opportunities for recreation. In addition, Salamander has built one of the finest equestrian facilities and programs in the country with 25 on-site acres dedicated to riding. The culinary program includes the rustic Harrimans Virginia Piedmont Grill, a multi-experience cooking studio, well-appointed wine bar, and a billiards room. SPECIAL INCENTIVE Planners interested in booking a program in Loudoun County could be eligible for receiving a $3-$5 per room night rebate on actualized room nights. Eligibility for Visit Loudoun's Meetings Incentive Program is based upon availability and the following criteria: must be a new meeting or conference taking place in Loudoun; groups must contract by December 31, 2022; eligibility is based upon meeting/conference RFPs sent or copied to Visit Loudoun and a minimum of 10 actualized room nights in a Loudoun County hotel, resort or conference center; and incentive dollars are for new business only and does not apply to existing contracts. Groups not eli­66 September­z October­2022

gible for the program include: weddings, fraternal, social events, sporting events and group tours. RICHMOND, VA VISITRICHMONDVA.COM WHAT'S NEW Richmond Region Tourism is in the planning stages for a major inspiration campaign to bring in visitors and meetings and conventions to the area, with funding provided through an ARPA Virginia Tourism Corporation grant. The Virginia Museum of History and Culture in Richmond reopened in May following a more than $30-million renovation and expansion transforming nearly two-thirds of the 250,000-square foot building, the most extensive transformation in its nearly 200-year history. New features include: a two-story entrance atrium; an immersive orientation theater; more space for innovative and immersive exhibitions; a new research library; community meeting and gathering spaces; an enhanced green space and a new café and museum store. Plans have been unveiled for a 7,500–capacity amphitheater near Tredegar Iron Works that is projected to open by May 2024. Three Notch’d Brewing, Virginia’s largest independent craft beer company, recently expanded their Richmond location, bringing a new food and beverage concept to the Scott’s Addition Neighborhood. Hidden Wit Brewing Co is coming to Moseley in Chesterfield next February. LOOKING AHEAD "Tourism is an economic engine and this past year saw us hitting on all cylinders – all four cylinders, in fact. Our perennial focus is on four key sectors: meetings and conventions; sports; leisure; and friends and family, and 2022 saw substantial activity across the board. While we have important


CAESARS VIRGINIA Caesars Entertainment recently broke ground on Caesars Virginia, a full-service entertainment facility scheduled to open in Danville, VA in late 2024. “We are incredibly excited to mark this next step in Caesars Virginia’s development with the support and enthusiasm of the Danville community and surrounding region,” said Barron Fuller, regional president for Caesars Entertainment. “The people of Danville entrusted us to build a world-class resort for visitors from around the country to enjoy, and that is exactly what we intend to do.”

Caesars Virginia will include a 500-room hotel and a worldclass casino gaming floor with over 1,300 slots, 85 live table games, 24 electronic table games, a WSOP™ poker room and a Caesars Sportsbook. In addition, the resort will feature a full-service spa, swimming pool, high-quality bars and restaurants, a 2,500-seat state-of-the-art live entertainment theater, and 40,000-square feet of meeting and convention space. caesars.com/destinations

“With construction now underway, we are excited to be one step closer to welcoming guests to a premier resort for fun and entertainment in the Danville area,” said principal Chief Richard Sneed of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. “We are grateful for all of the support we have received from local citizens and leaders for this venture that will create new jobs and provide economic growth across the region. The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians looks forward to a long and mutually beneficial relationship with the City of Danville.” work ahead to continue helping our local hospitality industry recover from the pandemic, the latest figures are promising and highlight the hard work of our hotel community,” notes Richmond Region Tourism's president and CEO, Jack Berry. Fueling the region’s popularity as a destination for visitors has been the appeal of the Greater Richmond Convention Center as well as the region’s thriving attractiveness as a destination for sports tourism. The Greater Richmond Convention Center experienced a 227 percent increase in event bookings between fiscal year 2021 and 2022. The facility also saw a 163 percent bump in attendance during the same time period. Events like the International Conference on Missions, the USA Field Hockey 2022 National Indoor Conference, and Galaxy Con drove the increases. The convention center is expecting attendance to rise another 30 percent this fiscal year due to increased bookings.

ting for intimate meetings and events in a former early 20th century bank situated directly across from the Amtrak platform. Speaking of Amtrak, a second daily service between Roanoke and DC on Amtrak’s Northeast Regional route began operating in July, giving expanded options for visitors to get to the destination. Virginia’s Blue Ridge hosted their first USA Cycling National Amateur Road Cycling Championship in July, and the event will return in 2023. The Roanoke area is building on its reputation as a metro mountain cycling destination by becoming the title sponsor of Virginia’s Blue Ridge TWENTY24, a professional women’s cycling development team that places Amtrak Station in downtown Roanoke with Liberty Trust in the background; photo courtesy: Visit Virginia's Blue Ridge

VIRGINIA'S BLUE RIDGE VISITVBR.COM WHAT'S NEW The Liberty Trust is a new, 54-room boutique hotel that opened in March in Downtown Roanoke. It features a mezzanine with meeting space and offers a sophisticated setMid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­67


Aerial view of the Virginia Beach oceanfront; photo courtesy: Virginia Beach Convention and Visitor Bureau

on podiums across the country and around the globe. With the recent opening of Olde Salem Brewing Company’s second location, downtown Roanoke now has six breweries within a one-mile radius. LOOKING AHEAD Virginia’s Blue Ridge (VBR) Sports had a strong year restarting sports tourism for the area by hosting multiple NCAA DIII Championships in the City of Salem and other elite sporting events. “Diversity in sport continued to be a focus for our region and together with our municipalities and counties, we were able to host the Carillion Clinic IRONMAN 70.3 in Virginia’s Blue Ridge, NCAA DIII Lacrosse National Championship, USA Cycling National Amateur Road Race Championships, and the Strongman National Championship,” observes John Oney, director of sales for Visit Virginia’s Blue Ridge. "These events showcased our collective ability to host events in a safe and successful manner. The need for inperson meetings continued to be at the forefront of our industry and the pandemic inspired us to be stronger together. VBR continued to support the meetings market with incentives, serv­68 September­z October­2022

ices, and other resources planners needed. We remained flexible in supporting our clients, open to new ideas and delivered inspiring communication about our destination,” Oney adds. VBR leadership also encouraged the formation of the VBR Healthcare Conferences and Meeting Advisory Group, which provided direction to assist the sales team in targeting healthcare-related conferences and meetings to meet in Virginia’s Blue Ridge. “We were honored to have several committee members representing Carilion Clinic, Fralin Biomedical Research Institute, and Virginia Tech. Overall, VBR hosted or assisted several meetings from corporate, association and SMERF markets," explains Oney. VIRGINIA BEACH, VA VISITVIRGINIABEACH.COM WHAT'S NEW In 2021, Delta Hotels Virginia Beach Bayfront Suites opened as the destination’s only beachfront hotel on the Chesapeake Bay with 295 suites. Earlier this year, the new $15-million Fairfield Inn & Suites Virginia Beach Town Center opened with 120 rooms and suites.

The most-recent addition to the oceanfront skyline is the new Hyatt Place Virginia Beach Oceanfront featuring 140 pet-friendly rooms and suites. The Sheraton Virginia Oceanfront Hotel completed a renovation that included the addition of an outdoor swimming pool plaza. Kicking off this fall, the Hampton Inn Oceanfront South launches a $3-million remodel slated for completion in 2024. A brand new $47-million Embassy Suites Resort Virginia Beach Oceanfront is scheduled to open as a signature addition to the Cavalier Resort in February of 2023, and will include 157 luxury hotel suites and beachfront dining in the Taco & Tequila Shack. The Virginia Beach Sports Center is the East Coast’s largest and newest indoor sports complex with 285,000-square feet of space that includes basketball and volleyball courts, a 200-meter, hydraulically banked track, and seating for 5,000 spectators. Notably, it was selected as the site for four NCAA Men’s and Women’s Indoor Track & Field Championship meets from 2023 to 2026.


After a $25-million renovation, the Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center’s South Building reopened and welcomed a collection of new, interactive exhibits. The Worrell 1000 Catamaran Race’s 12-day ocean endurance competition stretches 1,000-miles from Fort Lauderdale to Virginia Beach, and is returning after a long hiatus. The new digital mobile Get Outdoors Pass offers discounts to attractions, tour operators, rentals and more to explore the city’s 120-miles of waterways, 200-miles of hiking and biking pathways, and more than 4,000-acres of national refuges, city, and state parks. FOOD & DRINK Foodies, The Local’s Market features specialty cooking classes followed by a sit-down dinner in their tasting room plus a gourmet market.

the opening of our Virginia Beach Sports Center (November 2020), sports have thrived and continue to grow as a year-round travel segment, helping us get back on our feet quickly," notes Sally Noona, CMP, Virginia Beach director of convention sales and marketing. “Another industry trend that works in our favor in terms of attracting new and repeat pieces of business is our long-standing commitment to sustainability. With many companies and organizations including Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) deliverables as part of their event requirements, our LEED® Gold Convention Center has been exceeding expectations for a dozen years as the nation’s first existing convention center to earn the prestigious certification. Beyond water conservation and recycling initiatives, expanded sustainability programs such as local food sourcing and plantbased menus can tip the scales in our favor,” Noona adds.

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Lyfestyle Meals’ healthy, grab-and-go meal options are chef-crafted with local ingredients on a rotating menu of over 50 menu options. Virginia Beach welcomed the region’s first Mellow Mushroom overlooking the boardwalk in an 8,000-square foot space anchoring the Sheraton Oceanfront Virginia Beach Hotel. LOOKING AHEAD "As a primary drive destination, we’ve benefited in gaining new business from groups who previously would not have considered Virginia Beach, but are exploring options more readily accessible to their members by vehicle. Following Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­69


A COHNversation with Jim:

How was your Summer? HOW WAS THE WILDWOODS AND SOUTH JERSEY SHORE THIS YEAR FOR BUSINESS?

ANYTHING NEW OR SPECIAL COMING UP IN THE FALL TO DRIVE EVEN MORE BUSINESS?

“The 2022 season had been somewhat of a surprise considering the current market stresses from inflation to the return of a new strain of the virus...and especially coming off a record-breaking season in 2021. With all of that, the season has performed extremely well with tourism tax revenues exceeding plan by more than 30%. A key observation is that vacationers came in record numbers, stayed in our hotels, motels, and vacation rentals, and enjoyed quality family time. The projection for the year is for a robust tourism season near or even exceeding last year’s record-breaking revenue numbers.”

“The Greater Wildwoods Tourism Authority has launched their fall campaign which features all the great things to do and see in the Wildwoods and the many major events and festivals planned. The campaign highlights the Fall Season’s mild temperatures, lower seasonal rates for accommodations, lesser crowds, beautiful FREE beaches, great wineries, microbreweries and distilleries, eco-tourism, and many other outdoor activities to enjoy this Fall. The campaign also features the many attractions still open and the major events and festivals happening every weekend.” Visit www.WildwoodsNJ.com

“The Wildwoods Convention Center is also experiencing a good season and is almost back to pre-pandemic levels. Youth sporting events, although slightly down in attendance, are back along with consumer and trade shows and conventions. The 2023 season booking pace is projected to be back to pre-pandemic levels.”

BEN ROSE DIRECTOR OF MARKETING AND PUBLIC RELATIONS GREATER WILDWOODS TOURISM AUTHORITY

“We are definitely seeing meetings and events returning and our clients, guests and attendees are so thrilled to be back together! It's amazing to see our new convention space in use and our team is thrilled to be so busy creating unique and customized experiences!” ANYTHING NEW OR SPECIAL COMING UP IN THE FALL TO DRIVE EVEN MORE BUSINESS? “We recently opened Cinco Ninos - our new made-from-scratch Mexican restaurant which also has quite an impressive selection of tequila and mezcal! It's a fabulous addition to our F&B offerings! There are always new and exciting things happening at Kalahari!” STEPHANI L. BANN, CMP ASSISTANT DIRECTOR OF SALES KALAHARI RESORT & CONVENTION CENTER ­70 September­z October­2022


HOW WAS THE POCONOS THIS YEAR FOR THE SUMMER SEASON? “Business has been doing well in the Poconos. First and second quarters were still strong compared to 2021. We did see May and June start to level off more towards business flow like prior to 2020 and starting to normalize again. July was a good month too and we’ll see where August ended up. We think the fall will be strong as well for the foliage season too. We are seeing some dips in midweek retail travel and expect that to continue in the fall with school back in session. We’re still seeing good numbers for corporate and group on the smaller level, most of those are a combination of rescheduling from 2020 and 2021 and smaller corporate and regional meetings. We’re seeing more RFP’s coming through for 2024, 2025, 2026 and even 2027. So that is a positive sign too. There is a lot more competition for the corporate market again too, so we’re continuing to see what else we can do to attract planners to look at the Poconos more frequently.” ANYTHING NEW OR SPECIAL COMING UP IN THE FALL TO DRIVE EVEN MORE BUSINESS? “We’re going to look at more specialized FAM’s and target specific planners in different segments so we can show them more of the opportunities the area has to offer their companies for meetings, events, corporate retreats, and regional drive meetings. Showcasing the affordable and easier options that planners and meeting attendees can look at to avoid travel interruptions such as air travel. We’re also going to look at more hosted lunches, dinners, and outings in our markets to invite planners to come out in their own markets and bring our members to those events so they can meet and learn about the properties and hopefully schedule site visits from there.” BRIAN BOSSUYT EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT AND CMO POCONO MOUNTAINS VISITORS BUREAU

“The Pocono Mountains in general has been on a meteoric rise as a premier drive-to destination and the trend continues stronger today. Within the region, the vacation bureau stepped up in a big way showcasing the area as a serious, safe, and connected community. This resonated beyond our 4 counties and as the region started to reopen all businesses rose with the bureau. We all signed on to and exemplified the ‘Pocono Promise,’ which was a pact promoting our commitment to the moment. The resorts and amenities in the area have continued to provide a value-laden experience for all travelers. This swelling positive sentiment resonated with the business traveling community as well and meetings and events have never been stronger in the region.” RORY O’FEE DIRECTOR OF MARKETING WOODLOCH RESORT BOARD MEMBER, POCONO MOUNTAIN VISITORS BUREAU Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­71


“Woodloch Resort and the entire Pocono Mountain region has seen an influx of travelers this year! With many people taking a couple years off from travel, it seemed like everyone decided they felt safe to travel again in 2022. All aspects of transient and group business have been busier this year than any other year in recent memory. We have seen many social groups like girlfriend getaways, family reunions and golf groups increase… but corporate travel has seen the largest increase in 2022. The feedback from our groups, is that they have spent the last 2 years working remotely and only seeing each other through computer screens and really felt the need to bring the team together in person, reconnect, and get back to life as they knew it. Woodloch being a one-stop shop for world class teambuilding, accommodations, amenities, food, and natural beauty makes it a favorable destination for any of these types of groups.” “We are best suited as a “drive to” destination and have been receiving countless inquiries from groups who may have typically flown to destinations or even other countries. While many of these groups feel safer to get together, there is still some apprehension about getting on airplanes or in airports. This seems to have worked in Woodloch and the Pocono Mountain’s favor.” ANYTHING NEW OR SPECIAL COMING UP IN THE FALL TO DRIVE EVEN MORE BUSINESS? “The beautiful natural scenery and amenities that the Pocono Mountains offer, are a major reason the region continues to be a premier destination for Fall travel. Fall foliage is always a huge draw to travelers and Woodloch’s picturesque 3 mile lake offers a beautiful backdrop for meetings and events. The Fall also brings Woodloch’s Halloween themed packages that run through the month of October. With everything from Haunted Walks to Halloween Themed Teambuilding Events, Woodloch offers the perfect destination for all types of group and transient travelers this Fall!” MATT BUTLER CORPORATE SALES MANAGER WOODLOCH RESORT

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HOW WAS MONTGOMERY COUNTY & VALLEY FORGE AREA THIS YEAR FOR BUSINESS? “It was a busy summer in Valley Forge and Montgomery County! We continue to be very optimistic based on the number of meetings and events we’ve hosted, and because we’re seeing strong future planning activity. It’s been a wonderful sight to see our hotels, restaurants and attractions buzzing again with activity. Planners appear to be working with shorter timelines as we’ve seen several inquiries for only a few weeks out. The shorter timelines are starting to lead to some availability challenges – which is a trend to certainly keep an eye on. Based on the groups we’ve worked with, we know the outdoor venues, natural light and unique event space remains at the top of planners lists. We’re fortunate to have all these available within our destination.” SCOTT HIGGINS DIRECTOR OF SALES VALLEY FORGE TOURISM & CONVENTION BOARD


HOW WAS SOUTHERN DELAWARE BEACHES THIS YEAR FOR BUSINESS? “Business has been good this season at the Delaware Beaches. Hotel occupancy has just about matched and exceeded last summer (80% weekends, 60% weekdays) as of early July. Consumer / visitor spending appears to be down (while visiting) as inflationary pressures remain high and consumer savings has dropped since last summer.” ANYTHING NEW OR SPECIAL COMING UP IN THE FALL TO DRIVE EVEN MORE BUSINESS? “Learn a little about our historical attractions and take a look at our history events and tours for this fall!” https://visitsoutherndelaware.com/fall-for-history “Immerse yourself in our arts by visiting galleries, attend studio tours, arts festivals, plays, performances, concerts, exhibits, and so much more.” https://visitsoutherndelaware.com/arts-around-ourtowns “Group Booking Incentive. $300. for 30. Businesses or groups that book thirty or more hotel room nights at a Sussex County property for a single event and contract with a hotel will receive a $300. rebate from Southern Delaware Tourism.” https://visitsoutherndelaware.com/media/markets/so -del/images/group-incentive-webpage-2016page0001-edit.jpg SCOTT THOMAS EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR SOUTHERN DELAWARE TOURISM

HOW WAS DEWEY BEACH/SOUTHERN DELAWARE THIS YEAR FOR BUSINESS? “The Delaware beach towns flourished this summer with leisure travelers continuing to come back to vacation travel after the pandemic. There has also been steady growth of the corporate, association, government and social markets going back to inperson meetings. We have seen increased demand for onsite events for 2022, and have been able to create memorable and unique experiences for these groups as they come back together. Our special location in Dewey Beach has allowed for creative outdoor space for events, team bonding experiences and exciting culinary opportunities.” ANYTHING NEW OR SPECIAL COMING UP IN THE FALL TO DRIVE EVEN MORE BUSINESS? “The next few months are full of corporate conferences and weekend social events that will lead to an active and lively fall season at the beach. With upcoming local events such as Dewey Goes Pink, Golden Jubilee, and the Annual Seawitch Festival, we expect to continue to see travel to the area well after the summer season. The fall is an idyllic time to visit and host events at the Delaware beaches. It is the perfect time of the year to host an event starting with beachside yoga and ending with s’mores by a bonfire on the beach.” ASHLEE MARTINELLI REGIONAL DIRECTOR OF SALES & MARKETING HYATT PLACE DEWEY BEACH HYATT HOUSE LEWES / REHOBOTH BEACH

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EventsWorthy Chester County Culinary Challenge - Fantastico! August 18, 2022 – Malvern, PA – It was back, and it was back with complete mastery! The creative Chester County Culinary Challenge hosted by Chester County Conference & Visitors Bureau connected over 70 Chester County CVB hospitality partners and local meeting and event planners, executive assistants, and administrative professionals as they teamed up, pitting their cooking skills in a battle against each other to compete for prizes and awards at the Desmond Hotel Malvern, A Doubletree by Hilton. The "challenging" part of this culinary event is that participants do not know what they are making or what "pop-up" challenges they will face until the event starts. This year, the theme was Italian. Teams worked together first to create the top Limoncello drink to wow the judges on the Desmond's deck. The next engagement led participants to the Ballroom where they were challenged to make the perfect and most creative and delectable gnocchi dish from all of the ingredients that were placed on a dramatic sharing table in the middle of the room. A quick 15-minute "challenge" was issued to each team to enlist one team member to compete in filling and producing 12 cannoli with speed and precision. The Desmond's Chef Chris Calhoun, along with Chef Masimiliano Riccio of Portabello’s Restaurant and BRAVO's Top Chef finalist, Chef-Partner of Spice Finch and Founder of Carroll Couture Cuisine, Jen Carroll, oversaw the competition's creativity, team building and presentations honoring the winners. “We were so excited to bring back Chester County Culinary Challenge for its 5th year. It is such a unique way to network and meet new connections. The energy in the room is contagious as planners and Chester County hospitality partners go through all the emotions of a cooking competition. From nervousness at the start to the excitement at crossing the finish line, it is a wonderful night of networking and team building like no other. We are looking forward to another successful Chester County Culinary Challenge in 2023 – you won’t want to miss it,” proclaimed Courtney Babcock, Chester County Conference & Visitors Bureau. “We were thrilled to host the Culinary Challenge again this year. As we begin to poke ourselves out from uncertain times, it was great to see everyone back in person again! We were comforted by this wellattended event as it relates to the prediction of an active future for meetings within the hospitality industry. This popular culinary challenge is a service we always provide here at The Desmond, which presents a unique opportunity for bonding and collaboration in a fun and relaxed environment.” Kim Mullen, Desmond Hotel Malvern, a DoubleTree by Hilton What will be the cuisine for 2023? Keep checking in here. Photo Credits: Mario Oliveto Photography

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Courtney Babcock of the Chester County Conference & Visitors Bureau


EventsWorthy

Carolyn Muldoon, Training Camp with Michael Myers, Embassy Suites by Hilton Philadelphia-Valley Forge and Lynne Kopchains, BCD Meetings & Events

Ashley Baptiste of Conferences Connect

Kathleen Remetta, Weir Greenblatt Pierce, LLP with Chef Jen Carroll Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­75


EventsWorthy

Maureen Austin of Blank Rome, Heidi DeRise, Homewood Suites by Hilton, Katelyn Weeks from PMI and Kathleen Remetta, Weir Greenblatt Pierce, LLP

Cocktail Judges: Gail Sullivan, Meetings & Incentives Worldwide, Inc. and Joanne Romano, American Express Global Business Travel

Chester County Culinary Challenge’s Event Management Team ­76 September­z October­2022


EventsWorthy

Shelby Candrea, ASTM International and Shelly Harris, Desmond Hotel Malvern, a DoubleTree by Hilton

Chester County CVB Staff Mid-Atlantic­EvEntS­Magazine ­77


Around Th FALL FOR OUR HISTORY SOUTHERN DELAWARE Southern Delaware Tourism and Sussex County history and heritage tourism partners have created "Fall for our History," a three-month celebration of Sussex County heritage taking place this September, October and November. “Our area has a rich history dating back to well before the colonial period,” says Scott Thomas, Southern Delaware Tourism’s executive director. “This promotion gives us the opportunity to work with our partners, including hotels, chambers of commerce, museums, attractions, tour operators, state parks, and event and festival organizers to highlight this history and all of the heritage assets that we’re so fortunate to enjoy throughout Sussex County.”

LUSH EXPERIENCES ANNOUNCES FIRST U.S. HOTEL New York, NY — Lush Experiences recently announced representation of its first U.S. property, Le Barriere, scheduled to open in New York City’s Tribeca this fall. “We have sought the right opportunity to expand our representation efforts here in the U.S., and when Groupe Barriere was willing to show their confidence in us for their first foray into the U.S., we knew this was just what we wanted,” said Brad Beaty, co-founder of Lush Experiences along with partner Giuseppe Di Palma. lushexperiences.com

www.visitsoutherndelaware.com/fall-for-history

DISCOVERY SPACE NEW WEATHER EXHIBIT State College, PA - The Discovery Space science center is debuting its newest attraction, a state-of-the-art, science-based weather exhibit this September funded solely by local business owner and philanthropist, Dr. Joel N. Myers, founder and CEO of AccuWeather, his wife and family. The exhibit focuses on severe weather, temperature, precipitation and wind and features constantly updating AccuWeather maps and displays with real-time data. discoveryspace.org

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he Region GLOBAL CLEAN ENERGY ACTION FORUM Pittsburgh, PA – VisitPITTSBURGH will represent Allegheny County’s tourism and hospitality community on the 2022 Global Clean Energy Action Forum (GCEAF) Host Committee. The U.S. Department of Energy is partnering with Carnegie Mellon University to host the 2022 GCEAF in Pittsburgh September 21-23 at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center. “The GCEAF will go a long way in showcasing Pittsburgh as a clean energy hub to the world. The forum also will highlight Pittsburgh as a city of advancement and a key destination for business events,” said Jerad Bachar, president and CEO of VisitPITTSBURGH. visitpittsburgh.com

GAYLORD NATIONAL RESORT UNVEILS HARBOR SOCIAL National Harbor, MD - Gaylord National Resort recently unveiled its latest addition - Harbor Social, an elevated sports bar with interactive games, a 30-foot video wall, a full bar, and a menu curated by the hotel’s executive chef, Jakob Esko. Gaylord National also underwent a $64-million guestroom and suite renovation in 2021 and added the Potomac District Café & Market in March of 2022. “We see Harbor Social as a place for our guests to convene and network after a long day of meetings, to hold a team outing after their summit concludes, or for locals to just relax and have a drink,” said Dan McKeon, area general manager for Gaylord National Resort. gaylordnational.com

GRAND ADIRONDACK Lake Placid, NY – Originally opened in 1927, the historic Hotel North Woods reopened in August after a major renovation, unveiling a new look and name: Grand Adirondack Hotel, Lake Placid, part of Marriott Bonvoy’s Tribute Portfolio. The hotel embodies the spirit of Lake Placid, including the natural environment that surrounds the town. Fully reimagined, the 92-room hotel’s elevated design, unique culinary offerings, and programming immerse guests in the charming destination. Seasonally, guests can enjoy the view from Cloud Splitter, the highest rooftop bar in Adirondacks with views of Mirror Lake, Whiteface Mountain, the High Peaks, and five Olympic venues. Private dining is available. The destination is home to the Adirondack Park, which features over 2,000-miles of marked hiking trails, 15-miles of mountain bike trials, 6million acres of mountains, 3,000 freshwater lakes, rivers, streams, and ponds for year-round fishing, canoeing, kayaking excursions, and much more. www.grandadirondack.com

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Around Th GOGGLEWORKS ANNOUNCES MAJOR CAMPUS EXPANSION Reading, PA – GoggleWorks Center for the Arts has announced plans to develop its campus into an outdoor public “Art Park.” Sandy Solmon, GoggleWorks trustee and chair of the nonprofit’s Art Park committee, said the multiyear plan eventually will lead to over an acre of dynamic green space featuring public art, an outdoor cafe and bar, and interactive designs. The site also could accommodate popups, art demos, classes, farm markets, festivals, and performances. www.goggleworks.org

SPORTS ETA AND DESTINATIONS INTERNATIONAL PARTNERSHIP Washington, DC – The Sports Events and Tourism Association (Sports ETA) and Destinations International have announced a new twoyear partnership with a focus on educational programming and industry research. The sports events and tourism industry is one of the largest sectors in travel and tourism. “Our new partnership will continue our collaboration among a number of important areas for our sports events and tourism industry,” said Al Kidd, president and CEO of Sports ETA. sportseta.org

NOMO SOHO OPENS ROSE GARDEN New York, NY - NoMo SoHo has opened their Rose Garden, a patio attached to the front of the iconic NoMo Kitchen that provides guests with a whimsical place to hang out in a coveted Manhattan location. Mondays to Fridays, visitors can step into this new dining experience and taste the flavors of world cultures. The Rose Garden also can be used for brunch seating on Fridays. www.nomosoho.com

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he Region NEW DINING AND ENTERTAINMENT AT TROPICANA AC Atlantic City, NJ - On the heels of its 40th anniversary celebration last year, Tropicana Atlantic City will debut eight new dining and entertainment concepts that are part of Caesars Entertainment’s commitment to invest $400-million into its Atlantic City resorts by 2023. New arrivals include: Wild Honey Smokehouse and Tavern; Ossu Japanese Tavern; Hash House A Go Go; Purple Zebra; Gin Rickey’s; The Royce Social Hall; Il Verdi; and Hawthorne & Cork.

paralleled eight new dining offerings and additional transformative gaming enhancements this year,” explains Jacqueline Grace, senior vice president and general manager for Tropicana Atlantic City. tropicana.net

“Building on Tropicana’s success over the last four decades, we are thrilled to go all-in on our investment in this incredible resort destination, our Team Members, and the community we serve, as we introduce an un-

Refresh of MeetLakeGeorge.com

CRAFT BEVERAGE EXPO AND DISTRIBUTION CONFERENCE Pittsburgh, PA - Craft is all about community and collaboration and in that spirit Craft Beverage Expo and Distribution Conference (CBE) and VisitPITTSBURGH have announced their partnership to bring a weeklong experience to the city. The week will be anchored by the 10th Annual Craft Beverage Expo and Distribution Conference along with the Women in Craft Forum scheduled to take place March 29-31, 2023 at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center.

Since its inception in 2021, meetlakegeorge.com has provided a platform for meeting planners, event organizers, and group guests to gather relevant information needed for the planning and execution of events in the Lake George Area. The purpose of this site is to provide group-focused content in conjunction with Warren County Tourism and visitlakegeorge.com. The refreshed website will go live in early September 2022. www.meetlakegeorge.com

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EvEntM ­ AkErS DELAWARE

Hotel and Conference Center and the Blue Bell Country Club.

Wilmington - Kelly-Ayn McKay has been promoted to Associate Director, Special Events at Nemours.

King of Prussia - Melissa Esplen has been named Senior Manager, Meetings & Events for BeiGene and is working remotely.

MARYLAND Baltimore - Up to Par Management welcomed Michael Troyner as the new General Manager of Sparrows Point Country Club.

Lancaster - The Lancaster Marriott at Penn Square has hired Mara Sultan as Sales Manager.

Rockville - Arch Amenities Group, a full-service global provider of wellness, amenity and meeting services for commercial and residential properties, hotels and private clubs, announced the appointment of Whitney Smith Cripe as their new Chief Marketing Officer.

NEW YORK New York City - NoMo SoHo has announced Patrick Lacassagne as the hotel’s new General Manager.

PENNSYLVANIA

Lehigh Valley - Amy Howe has been named Regional Catering Sales & Accounts Manager, Greater Lehigh Valley at Wawa, Inc. Lehigh Valley - Dan Moyer has been appointed Executive Director of the Greater Lehigh Valley Auto Dealership Association. Philadelphia - Claire Smith has been promoted to Catering Sales Director at the Garces Group.

Aston - Justin Covington has been named Vice President of Eventions Productions.

Philadelphia - Jhona Ireland has been promoted to Event Sales Manager for Center City District.

Bethlehem - David Schweiger has an expanded role at Northampton Community College, accepting the position of Director of Culinary Arts, Hospitality & Sport Management.

Philadelphia – Hersha Hospitality hired Andrew Cifa as their Area Director of Sales, Marketing & Events for the Westin Philadelphia and The Rittenhouse Hotel.

Blue Bell - Hansen Properties has hired Elizabeth Rio as their new Corporate Event Manager for Normandy Farm

Philadelphia - Alethia Calbeck has been named Chief Communications Officer at Visit Philadelphia.

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Ireland

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Philadelphia - Elisabeth Aulepp has been promoted to Assistant Director of Alumni Engagement for the University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School. In this new role, Elisabeth will plan and coordinate all aspects of Alumni Weekend, manage alumni groups and related events, and plan programming locally and nationally to keep alumni engaged with the Law School. Philadelphia - Eric R. Elmore has been named Senior Manager for Marketing, Events, & Communications for the Pennsylvania Institute for CPAs. Philadelphia - TPG/Marshall Hotels & Resorts recently announced that Douglas Osborne has been named General Manager of the 20-room 1715 on Rittenhouse. Philadelphia - The University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology has announced that Amanda Grady has been promoted to Associate Director of Group Sales. Philadelphia - Courtney Killeen has been promoted to Area Senior Group Sales Manager for both The Bellevue Hotel and Hyatt Centric Center City Philadelphia. Philadelphia - HEI Hotels and Resorts has hired Jacqui Jules as Director of Sales for the Cambria Hotel Philadelphia Downtown Center City. Philadelphia - The Philadelphia Convention and Visitors Bureau announced that Sheila Alexander-Reid has been appointed Executive Director of PHL Diversity. Sheila will oversee PHL Diversity’s efforts to promote Philadelphia as an inclusive, welcoming destination for meetings and conventions.

Alexander-reid

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Philadelphia - Wyndham Philadelphia Historic District has announced that Nader Toma is their new Director of Sales. Philadelphia - Michelle Mercier has been named Director of Lodging, Music Experiences at On Location. Philadelphia - Global Philadelphia Association has announced that Zabeth Teelucksingh has been named as their President after having served as the organization’s Executive Director for over 10 years. In this new role, Zabeth will continue to promote the global significance of Philadelphia and improve coordination of activities and messaging among international organizations in the Philadelphia region. Pittsburgh - Holly Perella has been named Business Development Director for SportsPITTSBURGH. Pocono Manor - Kalahari Resorts and Conventions has hired Lucy Gussman as their new Sales Manager. Lucy will handle small groups with a focus on family reunion, tour & travel, military, and social overnight groups. Wawa - Jennifer Trowbridge has been hired as Corporate Catering Sales Manager for Wawa, Inc. West Conshohocken - Shelby Candrea has accepted a position as Meeting Manager for ASTM.

WASHINGTON, DC Pendry Washington DC – The Wharf, a new waterfront destination, has announced the appointment of Barry Koslow as Executive Chef. Bringing over two decades of fine dining experience in DC, Barry will be charged with overseeing all culinary programming across the hotel.

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ULTIMATELY

COME TOGETHER IN ATLANTIC CITY Atlantic City is focused on the future as we continue to offer a variety of corporate social responsibility programs to diversify ourselves and lead the way in regenerative tourism. From offering the necessary and environmentally-responsible convention space, to combining it with sustainable action, a lucrative incentive program, and continuing education, Atlantic City provides an experience with you and the future in mind. We look forward to working with your group to establish meaningful meetings and conventions before, during and after your event. Experiences await here.

Contact us to plan your next meeting in Atlantic City! Incentive packages are available for new group business. Call 1-844-855-6338 or visit meetac.com today!