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February 24, 2015: Minneapolis's Record-Setting Convention Year, Big Changes in Store for 2022 World Cup, Travel Site Asks Readers to Commit to Attending Festivals

1. HOW MINNEAPOLIS PUT TOGETHER A RECORD-SETTING CONVENTION YEAR: Major League Baseball’s All-Star Game came to Minneapolis in 2014, but so did a number of lower-profile events that helped the city’s hotels and convention facilities set revenue records. Minneapolis Star Tribune: “To catch the interest of organizations that hold conventions, Meet Minneapolis sends its staff to events across the country—particularly to conventions of people who plan conventions. Securing a big gathering of meeting planners is considered a major coup, since the attendees are likely to pitch Minneapolis as a destination to their groups.”

2. BIG CHANGES IN STORE FOR 2022 WORLD CUP: Bowing to the realities of playing the 2022 Wold Cup in the desert nation Qatar in the middle of the summer, FIFA is likely to recommend moving the tournament to November and December and shortening the schedule. The anticipated move has opened up new lines of criticism over the planning of the mega sports event, which already has faced allegations of inhumane treatment of workers constructing stadiums and other facilities. NBC Sports: “It’s mind-boggling that over four years after officially handing Qatar the World Cup, they still have absolutely no idea when it will happen, or even how long it will take. And shortening the World Cup isn’t a Get Out Of Jail Free Card for FIFA either. For all the talk about the summer heat, the winter isn’t all that much better in a nation that averages around 86 degrees in November. Shortening the World Cup would mean players have shorter rest periods to recover from playing in such conditions, yet another risk involved with the country.”

3. TRAVEL SITE ASKS READERS TO COMMIT TO ATTENDING FESTIVALS: Festivals are the future for hospitality veteran Chip Conley, an Airbnb executive and founder of the Joie de Vivre hotel chain. His latest project is Fest300, a consumer guide to the 300 best festivals across the globe. Readers are supposed to commit to attending one festival a year. Fast Company: “For long-term goals, Conley said he intends for the site to introduce people to festivals they otherwise wouldn’t attend. ‘You can go to Oktoberfest in Munich and have a great time even if you don’t drink,’ he added. ‘Experiential-driven travel is the fastest-growing component of travel, and we need a website that’s a world authority.’ At the same time, Fest300 goes after a particular market: Travelers with aspirations to attend budget-bursting trips like Pamplona's Running of the Bulls or the Harbin Ice Festival in northwestern China can get all the information they need, but the mostly English-speaking populace can also read up on closer and more affordable destinations like Mardi Gras, Oktoberfest, and New York’s Governors Ball.”


BOSTON:  The Boston Herald looks inside the Ellie Fund’s Red Carpet Gala and Oscar viewing party at the Fairmont Copley Plaza.

CHICAGO:  The Children’s Place Association’s “Once Upon a Time” gala is April 18 at Union Station.

LAS VEGAS:  The seventh annual Walk With Me event presented by Easter Seals Nevada to benefit Nevada residents living with disabilities is April 4 at W. Wayne Bunker Family Park.

LOS ANGELES:  Belmond El Encanto in Santa Barbara has appointed Shaun O’Bryan as resort manager. He comes from the Ojai Valley Inn & Spa.

Local event listings from Masterplanner:

MIAMI/SOUTH FLORIDA:  Delano South Beach has been named the official Miami Music Week hotel and will host events at both Delano Beach Club and FDR Lounge & Nightclub March 24-29.

NEW YORK:  The Jackie Robinson Foundation's annual award dinner is March 9 at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel. The event will recognize filmmaker Tyler Perry, BNY Mellon chairman and C.E.O. Gerald Hassell, and McDonald's president and C.E.O. Donald Thompson.

Haiti Optimiste, an event from the French Institute Alliance Française and Artists Institute, is slated for Thursday at Florence Gould Hall. The evening includes film screenings, music, discussions, and a reception with delicacies from Haitian chef Nadege Fleurimond.

Local event listings from Masterplanner:

TORONTO:  The Metis Nation of Ontario Health Summit is taking place through today at the Intercontinental Toronto Centre Hotel. Some 200 health and wellness professionals are in attendance.

WASHINGTON, D.C.:  Events DC, the city's convention and sports authority, is participating in the National Football League Players Association's annual player externship program, hosting New England Patriots’ Justin Green and former Baltimore Raven Ryan Bartholomew in its communications and marketing and government relations departments. The three-week program runs through March 6.

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With contributions from Jenny Berg in Chicago, Alesandra Dubin in Los Angeles, Mitra Sorrells in Orlando, and Beth Kormanik, Michele Laufik, Jill Menze, and Anna Sekula in New York.

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