Leading Meeting Professionals

Professional Convention Management Association

May 2012

Special Section: Virginia

Jennifer N. Dienst

Meetings flourish in the land collaboration

Virginia is leading the way with a new statewide initiative promoting something all planners deserve - getting their life back. Grounded in professional industry meeting standards, The Virginia Declaration of Meeting Excellence is a pledge to the success of every meeting professional that translates into real savings, in terms not just of money, but of that all-too-fleeting resource - time. Meeting planners can reclaim that precious commodity through Virginia Tourism Corporation’s easy-to-use online toolkit, expansive network of knowledgeable CVBs and DMCs, and team of professional planning partners who can guide them through every step of the process.

Meeting in Virginia means beautiful venues and desirable destinations, from vibrant city centers to sparkling nature retreats. And whatever destination planners choose, they will find an affordable and accessible framework for creating a successful event. Groups who appreciate a lesson in American history have their choice of notable cities, including Williamsburg, Charlottesville (home to Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello), and Richmond, famous for its many museums and Civil War sites. Virginia’s natural beauty is also the perfect backdrop for off-site events, team-building, and pre- and post-tours. From scenic drives along the Blue Ridge Parkway to whale and dolphin watching off Virginia Beach, the list of outdoor options is as long as the state’s coastline. And Virginia’s mild, “Goldilocks” climate - not too hot and not too cold - means outdoor activities are an option during almost any time of the year.

Preserving these natural assets remains a high priority for Virginia’s hospitality industry. A partnership between the Virginia Tourism Corporation, the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality, and the Virginia Hospitality and Travel Association has created the Virginia Green Certification, which identifies tourism-related businesses that operate according to specific green standards. Planners can find a comprehensive directory of these certified restaurants, hotels, venues, and other businesses at virginiagreentravel.org.
 
For convenient online planning, virginia .org/meetings allows users to compare venues side-by-side, submit RFPs, and browse the online meeting-planning toolkit and the Virginia Meeting Planning Guide. 

For more information: 


Virginia Tourism Corporation
Joni Johnson, CTP, TMP
National Sales Manager
804.545.5544 or 800.811.4296
virginia.org/meetings

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