Small Market Meetings

JAN 2017

The Newspaper for Smaller Cities, Facilities and Planners.

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January 2017 11 Courtesy Experience Scottsdale Groups can take team-building jeep treks through Scottsdale's Sonoran Desert landscape. What is unique to the location? Every city has its own flavor, so tapping into local culture is sure to create unforgettable memories for meeting groups. In Scottsdale, known as the "West's most Western town," visitors can make their own cowboy hats at Saba's Western Store or venture into the Sonoran Desert for an elegant Dinner in the Desert. "We take people out to the desert in jeeps, have a beautiful white- cloth dinner and then bring out storytellers and musicians to perform under the stars," said Pumphrey. In contrast, Juneau, Alaska, is famous for its dramatic frozen land- scape. Groups can climb into helicopters for an aerial tour over glaciers in the Juneau Ice Field, which is larger than the state of Rhode Island, or ride the Mount Roberts Tramway 1,800 feet above the valley. A sce- nic cruise is also a great way to experience local beauty. "Within minutes from the docks, you'll be able to see eagles, sea lions, humpback whales, orcas — all sorts of wildlife teeming in the waters," said Kirk Stagg, convention sales manager at Travel Juneau. Meanwhile, Providence prides itself on offering a wide selection of art galleries. "Monthly, we have a program called Gallery Night," said Degulis. "We have a very large art scene with the Rhode Island School of Design being here, so we have a lot of galleries." During this free evening activity, a trolley takes visitors across town to all the galleries, where attendees can enjoy appetizers, cheese and crackers. What seasonal activities are available for your group? The season is another factor to consider when it comes to planning after-hours events. In Juneau, summer is the best time to enjoy more outdoors activities, such as hiking, kayaking and zip-line tours, though it is also the peak tourist season. Arts, theater and skiing take over the entertainment scene during colder months. "It depends on what your group is looking for," said Stagg. "If you've got a really active bunch, then I would tell them to come between mid- April to the end of September. If they would prefer to have the town to themselves, then they could come pretty much any time of the year."

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