DEC 2017

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 28 of 75

D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7 ⎜ ConventionSouth ⎜ w w w . c o n v e n t i o n s o u t h . c o m 29 The AWARDS Issue! Readers' Choice Award Winners • 21C Museum Hotel Louisville • Bowling Green Area CVB • Crowne Plaza Louisville Airport • Destination Frankfort • Galt House Hotel • Griffin Gate Marriott Resort & Spa • Hyatt Regency Lexington • Louisville Marriott Downtown • meetNKY | Northern Kentucky CVB • Mt. Sterling/ Montgomery County Tourism • Paducah CVB • Seelbach Hilton – Louisville's Grand Destination Experience • Shepherdsville Bullitt County Tourist & Convention Commission New & Renovated Award Winners • Maysville Event Center Kentucky $235, however they were willing to drop the addi- tional $35 resort fee. I asked if we could then make the room rate $199 and keep the $35 resort fee so the base rate appears to meet the group's $199 rate. Even though the total comes out to $235 either way, it's their perception and satisfies the group's need to see a rate of $199. Other times, I will sim- ply negotiate so the resort fee is dropped and that alone gets the price where we need it. "As far as the challenge of rising F&B prices, I work with the chef to create custom menus that fit within the group's budget. This can be anything from modifying a meal already on their menu to creating an entirely new menu item for the group. Another way I have responded to this challenge is to help the client secure more sponsorships to help offset the cost. I have also given "Event Planning 101" presentations to various boards and directors to help them understand the costs of F&B, A/V and room rates. I always get a kick out of the look on their faces when they learn a gallon of coffee is $90. Helping to educate them allows budgets to increase, or at least helps them understand why we have to secure sponsorships if they are not in the position to increase the budget." Rewards: "What I like most about my job is being able to work with different clients to achieve their event goals. Every day is different since this business is all about creative ideas, and it is always exciting to see what the next event will allow me to do with my creativity. I also love the gratification and satisfaction that is felt when I can see the smile on my client's face as I drive their event home. Of course the traveling and site visits aren't so bad either! "There is no other industry I would rather work in. At the start of my career, I was hired as an as- sistant to a convention manager for a 3,000 person convention in Las Vegas. My boss ended up part- ing ways with the company one month before the event and I had to take over. It certainly gave me a crash course on large events and the thrill I felt pulling it off was when I knew this is the industry I want to be in forever. I love what I do and love working with the diverse range of groups and peo- ple I am able to work with." ►

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