SEP 2014

ConventionSouth magazine is the leading resource for meeting planners who book all types of events, conventions, conferences and group travel in the south.

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⎜ ConventionSouth ⎜ S E P T E M B E R 2 0 1 4 w w w . c o n v e n t i o n s o u t h . c o m 26 • • • • • • • • • Montgomery truly is one of America's most historically marked cities. Make a toast to equality in Birming- ham as you tour pivotal locations in the Civil Rights movement of the 50s and 60s. Host an event at Birming- ham Civil Rights Institute, a interpretive museum and research center that depicts the struggles and successes of the movement. Learn how to plant an heirloom garden by interpreters at Burritt on the Mountain in Huntsville, an eclectic estate and living history museum complete with a mansion, 19 th century houses, a farm, nature trails and event spaces. Stroll along the Mississippi River city of Natchez and meet at Monmouth Historic Inn. Built in 1818, the inn's rooms are beautifully appointed with period furnishings and antebellum-era antiques. Over the span of more than 190 years of existence, Monmouth witnessed generations of births and deaths, as the home and workplace of slaves, tenant farm- ers, American statesmen, businessmen and enterprising housewives, all contributing to its historic saga as one generation passed from view and the next took its place. Make it a performance in downtown Meridian, home to the MSU Riley Center's fully restored 1889 grand opera house theater that seats approximately 950. Find your artsy side at the New Orleans Warehouse Arts District, which is located in the historic American Sector close to the Mississippi River, the French Quarter and the city's convention center. The renaissance of this area began with the 1984 World's Fair, and today is a thriving neighborhood of art galleries and world-class museums, restaurants, shops and hotels such as The Whitney Hotel, a converted bank building and a national historic landmark. Explore the history of Louisiana's capital city, Baton Rouge. At the Hilton Baton Rouge Capitol Center, a historic downtown building, each room has a unique floor plan and deco- rations reminiscent of the era in which the hotel was built. Adjacent to the hotel is the Shaw Center for the Arts, the River Center Convention Center, and the Louisiana Old State Capitol, a castle-like building that's more than 150 years old and features a beautiful spiral staircase. Sweeten up your events at an 18 th century sugar plantation. Houmas House Plantation and Gardens in the South Louisiana town of Darrow is a grand antebel- lum estate known as "The Sugar Palace." Sixteen guest rooms are filled with period antiques and Louisiana artwork, while 38 lush acres of gardens, ponds and a majestic live oak alley. Tap your toes on the stage where Elvis was first on the radio. The Munici- pal Auditorium in Shreveport re-opened this April after a $6 million renovation that makes the historical building a premier venue for events. The building was built in 1920 with an Art Deco architecture and is most famously known for the Louisiana Hayride—the 1948- 1960 radio program featuring singers, song- writers and performers, such as Johnny Cash, Hank Williams, Johnny Horton and the debut performance of Elvis Presley on October 16, 1954. Walk among wildflowers and butterflies of nearly every color at the Botanical Garden of the Ozarks in Fayetteville. The collection of 12 themed gardens includes the region's only butterfly house. Immerse yourself in art and the Ozarks at Crystal Bridges Museum of Art. Located on 120 acres of native Ozark forest in Bentonville, the museum explores the history of America through vari- ous art works. Opened in 2011, the museum's distinctive architecture immerses visitors in the landscape, while three miles of nature trails encourage exploration and reflection. Journey along historic Route 66 to Joplin, which located in the southwest corner of Missouri and is home to numerous histor- ical and cultural sites such as the 1881 Moses Carver House just outside of town. Mississippi Louisiana Arkansas Missouri • • • H I S T T U R A L V E N U E S

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