A little over a week ago, Breanne, Jamie and Jill made their way to the Midwest (Oklahoma City) for the 2016 ADMEI Annual Conference. This is the only conference for the destination management profession, bringing owners, sales and operations teams together to network and help attendees connect with their fellow peers in other destinations.
One of their favorite speakers from the conference included keynote speaker, Chris Kuehl. If you haven’t heard him speak, you must! He’s extremely engaging and even better, he’s hilarious. He spoke on the Economy – good news, we are not headed into another recession. Why you might ask? Because you need to end one recession before you can enter a new one, and we haven’t fully recovered from our 2008-2009 recession.
Friday night, the girls headed to the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum for a networking event. This is America’s premiere institution of Western history, art and culture. Walking through the museum, the Corinthian trio viewed galleries focused on American cowboys, Native American culture and frontier military. Fun fact: there are over 500 different patents of barbed wire! Who knew?
The rest of the evening was spent catching up with old friends, making new ones, dancing, and riding the mechanical bull into the sunset!
The next day included a session with Michael Dominguez, Chief Sales Officer at MGM Resorts International, who gave his commentary on the State of the Industry. Based on 2015, Hotel Occupancy is at its highest Demand ever (1.2 Billion) with the highest Occupancy ever (65.6%) and the highest Room Revenue ($142 billion).
Saturday afternoon included some free time, so Breanne, Jamie and Jill explored the city, making sure to stop at the Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum. This Memorial Museum takes visitors through the days, weeks and years that followed the April 19, 1995 bombing of Oklahoma City’s Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building.
It was a humbling experience for them, learning about the journey Oklahomans faced with this tragedy. Twenty-one years later, it is clear that they are a strong, resilient and tight-knit community.
“We come here to remember those who were killed, those who survived and those changed forever. May all who leave here know the impact of violence. May this memorial offer comfort, strength, peace, hope and serenity.”
Saturday night featured the ADMEI Awards Gala. Entertainment for the evening included a thrilling performance by Scott Keo, a Michael Buble Tribute, and boy was he amazing! There was quite a lot to celebrate that evening. Congratulations to all the winners, especially Bonnie Boyd, Rhonda Marko and Madelyn Marusa for the Lifetime Achievement Award, what a huge accomplishment!
A big shout out to Factor 110 who made them feel welcome in their city and did an amazing job with event production throughout the week.
Corinthian Events looks forward to this conference every year – an opportunity to spend time with some of our favorite colleagues in the industry throughout the world. We’ll see everyone in Barcelona for ADMEI 2017!