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Industry Briefs
Black Meetings & Tourism Presents Free Family Reunions Workshop And Roundtable Discussion During TPOC Conference In Atlanta. Public Is Invited

magazine will be presenting a workshop on planning family reunions at Travel Professional's of Color's (TPOC's) 13th Annual Conference at the Crowne Plaza Atlanta Airport Hotel in East Point, GA.  The Family Reunion Workshop is scheduled to take place on Friday, May 15, 2015 from 10:30 a.m. - 11:45 a.m. 

The public is invited to attend this free workshop, where among other things, attendees will learn: how to plan a family reunion; the benefits of working with a travel agent; help/support services available from convention & visitors bureaus; and money saving tips for planning your reunion.

Workshop panelists include Chantel Ross Francois, tourism director, Douglasville CVB, Penny Moore, group services manager, DeKalb CVB, Todd Neal, senior sales manager, Destination College Park, Atlanta CVB, J. Maceo Rogers, CEcD director, Dept. of Economic Development, East Point, Beverly Bentley, owner, Bentley Travel Services, and Robert Woods, SMERF sales manager at Hilton Atlanta.  BM&T publisher/editors Solomon and Gloria Herbert will serve as workshop facilitators.

On Saturday, May 16, BM&T is also presenting a roundtable discussion on their "Stay-A-Day" initiative from 3:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m. Local African-American community leaders, clergy, business owners, elected officials, travel/hospitality industry professionals and the public are urged to attend.   The discussion will focus on strategies to ensure that the African-American community will get a fair share of the billions of dollars generated by the Atlanta area's travel and conventions industry.

A reception for Kathleen Bertrand will be held from 6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. immediately following the roundtable discussion.  After 32 years of dedicated service to Atlanta's hospitality community, Bertrand, senior vice president of community and governmental affairs at the Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau (ACVB), is retiring.  The public is invited to join in the celebration for this industry icon.

About Stay-A-Day Initiative:

The basis of "Stay-A-Day" is to ask ALL visitors and conference attendees traveling to or within the US to add an extra day to their itinerary and: visit an African-American cultural and/or heritage site; dine at an Ethnic Eatery; and purchase items from African-American retail stores, artists and craft artisans. Additionally, the program suggests, if possible: book travel/tours with an African-American Travel Agent, Tour Operator; stay at a Black-owned hotel or bed and breakfast; and worship at an African-American Church. It is estimated that $367.1 million in revenue would be added to the US economy each day if all international visitors extended their travel experience in this country. Approximately $1.8 billion a day would be generated if all domestic travelers included an additional day in their itineraries.

Imagine the economic impact possibilities if a fare share of these dollars found their way into our community. The purpose of "Stay-A-Day…See Our USA" is to help revitalize the overall travel industry, contribute to creating jobs in African-American communities, stimulate the nation's economy, and just as importantly, expose travelers worldwide, to the enormous cultural impact that people of African descent have made in this country. As efforts to increase visitation to and within the U.S. are intensified, it's clear to us that we as African-Americans must assume the responsibility of making certain that these and any other programs geared to rebuilding the travel industry will also benefit our community as well.