OCT 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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N O R T H G E O R G I A Rome sits about 20 miles west of the I75 corridor in Georgia's northwest quadrant. The city's downtown district is surrounded on three sides by three rivers—the Etowah, Oostanaula and Coosa. The Forum, the city's primary meeting and event space, provides more than 34,400 square feet of exhibit and meeting space and banquet seating for up to 1,000. "We have begun construction on a new 114-room Courtyard by Marriott hotel located adjacent to The Forum, our primary conference center," said Debbie Gal- loway, sales coordinator for meetings and conventions at the Greater Rome Conven- tion & Visitors Bureau. "It will have a full-service restaurant, bar and lounge and meeting space for up to 100. It's expected to be ready by sum- mer 2015. Along with the Hawthorn Suites, located on the same block as The Forum, we'll have just short of 200 hotel rooms downtown within easy walking distance of the facility." The Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham in Rome just completed a major reno- vation and added new riverside suites, bringing the total rooms to 65. The his- toric structure has original wood floors, brick walls and a large sky-lit atrium. Not surprisingly, Rome's rivers offer appealing recreational options. The Sulzbacher Roman Holiday, a 45-passen- ger excursion boat is based in Downtown Rome's Heritage Park and there are 10 miles of trails along all three rivers. Rome's Town Green is part of the Oostanaula River greenway located by a pedestrian bridge crossing the river and adjacent to The Forum and to the Rome Area History Museum. It features a splash pad, a fountain and seating. ■ Blairsville- Union County Tagged as "Georgia's Outdoor Destination" Union Countyʼs tagline, "Georgiaʼs Outdoor Destination," is validated by its fortuitous location in the high terrain of Georgiaʼs upper-northwest section amidst the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Chattahoochee National Forest. "We have some magnificent natural attractions including Brasstown Bald, the highest peak in Georgia, beautiful waterfalls, Lake Nottely and more," said Tobie Chandler, Tourism Director for the Blairsville-Union County Chamber of Commerce. "We also have the Mountain Life Museum and a couple of wineries—one Vineyards." Blairsville is not only nicely situated in a gorgeous landscape but also conveniently located. The multi-use Union County Community Center houses the Blairsville-Union County Chamber of Com- elcome Center and is located at the Butternut Creek Golf Course in Blairsville. The building features a 2,500 square-foot conference room and three smaller breakout meeting rooms. There are three hotels in Blairsville and many more cabins. "Union County is a great location for smaller business meetings," said Chandler. "After a long meeting, you just walk outside and get lost in the beauty Mother Nature created." ■ Some 50 miles south of Dalton, just off of I75, is Cartersville, the major city in Bartow County. The Cartersville-Bartow County CVB operates an official Georgia Regional Visitor Information Center and the 44,000- square-foot state-of-the-art LEED-certified Clarence Brown Conference Center on a 20-acre campus featuring reflection ponds and walking trails. The Clarence Brown Conference Center contains the Etowah Ballroom, which can accommodate 1,400 for a reception and about 1,000 seated; the 3,000-square-foot Stilesboro Hall, which can be divided into three spaces; Carter Hall, a 300-seat auditorium; six smaller classrooms; and an execu- tive boardroom. Outside, the Bartow Amphitheatre has room for 300-plus. The Clarence Brown Conference Center was selected by the editors of ConventionSouth as one of the "Elite 50 Conference Centers in the South" for 2014. Cartersville-Bartow County offers much more than a first-class confer- ence center, however, as noted by Deputy Director Regina Wheeler. "We are unique in that guests may meet in and experience two Smithsonian affiliate museums—Booth Western Art Museum and Tellus Science Museum," said Wheeler. "In addition, Barnsley Resort, noted as one of the Ten Best Southern Resorts by USA Today July 2014, welcomes corporate guests with smart stay rates and meeting specials throughout the year." Barnsley Resort is a 1,400-acre luxury resort in Adairsville with 62 guest rooms and suites, five one-bedroom cottages, six multi-bedroom cottages and 8,000 square feet of meeting space. Barnsley's Executive Chef Adam Hayes won Food Network's Cutthroat Kitchen August 2014. Wheeler also pointed to an additional development on the horizon in 2015 at LakePoint Sporting Community & Town Center, just south of Cartersville. The venue is currently home to the recently opened Terminus Wake Park, Perfect Game Baseball, Sinjin Smith's Rally Volleyball, and the Braveheart Soccer/Lacrosse complex but new hotels are expected to build close to LakePoint beginning in 2015. Bartow County is currently home to 16,000 sleeping rooms. ■ ⎜ ConventionSouth ⎜ O C T O B E R 2 0 1 4 52 w w w . c o n v e n t i o n s o u t h . c o m Rome: Rivers, Roman Holiday, The Forum Cartersville-Bartow County:Clarence Brown, Barnsley Resort & LakePoint Rome's Town Green & urban river- front and the Chief John Ross Memorial Bridge shine in the center of the vibrant historic downtown.

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