NOV 2018

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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Page 17 of 67

⎜ ConventionSouth ⎜ N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 8 w w w . c o n v e n t i o n s o u t h . c o m 18 THE SOUTH'S MUSIC CITIES Governance Meeting, an annual meeting for the state association held in Natchitoches, September 19 – 21, 2018, wanted to add a mu- sic-filled component and Natchitoches was the destination of choice. "The association held a reception on the Riverbank for the attendees with a live band on the Riverbank Stage and fireworks to cap the evening," West said. Georgia's Most Eclectic Music City R.E.M., Widespread Panic, the B-52s and so many more legendary bands call Athens their home town, while others, such as Atlanta's Drivin N Cryin and the Colorado bluegrass band Leftover Salmon make frequent visits. Athens also offers a range of venues, from elegant to funky, perfect for catching a live performance and hosting events, including The Classic Center, The Foundry, Live Wire Athens and the revitalized Georgia Theatre (now providing an additional rooftop music space with a restaurant), according to Alvieann Chandler, communications specialist for the Athens CVB. "Athens is a great place to host a meeting, especially if meeting planners want to incorporate music because it is known for its musical atmosphere and energetic vibe," Chandler said. "There are multiple musical festivals every year and live music can often be heard downtown. If meeting planners are looking for an area that is energetic and filled with fun music and energy for their next meet- ing, then Athens is the place to be." With lots of music-centered options, plan- ners can immerse attendees in the local scene. "Groups can hire local bands to play during networking or social hours or even have some of their own staff put on a show," Chandler said. "Groups can visit local music clubs to hear live music or take a music history tour to learn about famous bands R.E.M. and the B-52s, as well as others. Partner Software has a conference every year to exchange ideas and learn about new practices for software investment. The conference is held at The Classic Center but once it is over, a group of staff members form a band and perform at the Georgia Theatre. This year the group hired The Rupert's Orchestra to perform. The clos- ing party is a great way for attendees to relax and unwind after a long three-day event." n TRY A FESTIVAL ON FOR SIZE! Your first thought when letting your mind wander to Myrtle Beach, S.C., might not be necessarily centered around music but if country music is your jam, then consider hosting your meeting during the Carolina Country Music Fest (CCMF). An annual festival held in June that attracts more than 30,000 country music fans, next year's event will feature Deana Carter, Runaway June, Luke Bryan, Toby Keith, Zac Brown Band and many more country music stars. Michael Stephens, director of CCMF, said there's a great appeal for hosting your meeting or conference during the event and offering attendees the chance to experience the festival: "The fest is four days long and offers your group enjoyment, entertain- ment and team-building." n

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