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asonj23

Convention a coup for River City

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Convention a coup for River City

National Dental Association expected to spend nearly $1 million during its stay

By CHRISTOPHER CALNAN, The Times-Union

Jacksonville tourism officials are all smiles over the National Dental Association's plan to hold its annual convention in the city in 2009.

Read the rest here

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Things are looking up for our convention buisness. The Prime Osbourne is becomming more and more obsolete as Hyatt continues to steal away more conventions.

How much longer should we wait to see serious plans to overhaul/replace the Prime Osbourne?

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I noticed two significant things from the article:

The convention is scheduled to be at the Hyatt Regency Jacksonville Riverfront from July 22-30, 2009.

The NDA didn't consider Jacksonville for its annual conventions in previous years, the group's meeting planner, LaVette Henderson, said. But that changed when the city hosted Super Bowl XXXIX in February.

"Jacksonville was not on the map, basically, until the Super Bowl was there," she said. "It didn't sit on the same standards as an Orlando."

Here's proof of the Super Bowl enhancing Jax's image and improving the local economy.

The change in ownership of Jacksonville's largest hotel earlier this year also played a role in the deal, officials said.

In April, Hyatt took over operations of the 966-room downtown hotel after the owner of Adam's Mark sold the hotel to two investment companies that enlisted Hyatt to manage it. That management change was a factor in attracting the NDA, said Donald Harris, president of the Jacksonville Hotel and Motel Association.

"We probably wouldn't have gotten this with the Adam's Mark," he said. "In the hotel industry, [Hyatt] is big."

If a name change has this type of effect, then glad to see the Adams Mark go!

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Name recognition is a big thing nowadays. It seems to be built on reputation and Adam's Mark really didn't seem to have a good one. I am glad to see that the Hyatt is doing well with attracting conventions but it is apparent that Jacksonville needs to find a solution to the convention center problem quickly.

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All these Hyatt conventions should be a slap in the face to the Prime Osborn people. And to the city. I'm sick of them talking about getting Jacksonville into the spotlight with the SuperBowl, since they don't plan on taking to initiative to fuel that spotlight with a new convention center.

I know there's tons of other projects out there, but as a city this large, we should be able to tackle a courthouse fiasco and a convention center at the same time.

Sorry if this sounds like a rant. I'm not that mad...

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Just dont mention the court house...

Thats one of those issues for me that if i think about, ill tear down the old library myself out of rage...

ARGGG

peace

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The courthouse debacle is what probably has kept the convention center issue from getting the attention that it deserves. It has become glaringly obvious that the Prime Osborn is total trash. When conventioneers are using a hotel to host a convention and not the city's so called convention center, something is wrong. And besides, do we really want Peyton and his staff working on another large capital project that would require a lot of City dollars? I think we all know the answer!

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