Black Meetings and Tourism

November/December 2021

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Page 47 of 52

B M & T ••• November/December 2021 ••• 47 MEET IN TENNESSEE SURROUNDED BY RICH CULTURE AND HISTORY BY BUCK SAMUELS With so many historical landmarks and unique meeting venues spread through- out the state, meeting planners won't have trouble finding the right location for just about any event of any size in Tennessee. Visitors to Knoxville, the largest city in the eastern region of the Volunteer State, can explore the history of women in round ball at the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame. Knoxville's Black heritage is high- lighted at the Beck Cultural Exchange Center and Morningside Park, which fea- tures a 13-ft. bronze statue of Roots author Alex Haley. Memphis, Tennessee's largest city, lies at its eastern edge. Its famed historic Beale Street entertainment district is a must-see attraction, while two other top sites are the National Civil Rights Museum and the Stax Museum of American Soul. In the state's central region, the capital city of Nashville is home to such historic landmarks as Jubilee Hall, on the campus of Fisk University, Music Row, the heart of the country music recording industry, and the African American Museum of Music. • • MEMPHIS • • Perched high on a bluff overlooking the mighty and powerful Mississippi River, Memphis marches to the beat of the Blues, of Stax-era Soul, of the countless neighborhood barbeque shacks and the King's own Graceland. There's no better place to host your convention or meeting than Memphis. From musical landmarks to upscale restaurants run by some of the country's hottest chefs, from the elegant hotels to the mystical nightclubs on leg- endary Beale Street, there's just some- thing authentic about Memphis, the "Home of the Blues, and Birthplace of Rock 'n' Roll." The Renasant Convention Center (for- merly Memphis Cook Convention Center) is being reimagined with a game- changing renovation that includes enhancements to the building's interior and exterior. Every square inch of the convention center will be touched by this project, bringing hotel-quality finishes and amenities that are desired by meeting planners and their delegates. The con- vention reinvention vision is for meeting spaces that embrace the river and sky- line views along with outdoor terraces, glass-enclosed concourses, pre-function space, and 46 breakout meeting rooms. The Renasant Convention Center features a column-free 118,000-sq. ft. main exhibit hall, a new exterior con- course and pre-function space, 46 breakout rooms, the largest in the region, and a 28,000-sq. ft. ballroom to host smaller events. The facility's reno- vation, completed in 2020, also includes public art, and digital wayfind- ing, and additional loading docks for easier load in and load out. In a city so influenced by African- Americans, it's no wonder that heritage is strongly embraced and celebrated here. To get started exploring this very historical city, consider booking with A Tour of Possibi- lities or Heritage Tours, which spe- cializes in explor- ing the historical and cultural places heavily influenced by A f r i c a n - Americans. Be sure to reach out to Kermit Madison, Senior Director of Sales, West Region for Memphis Travel, who will provide you with all of the sup- port you need for a successful event in Memphis. Memphis International Airport services the area with more than 30 exciting desti- nations to travel to and from. • • NASHVILLE • • Music City has been a hit with meeting planners and delegates for decades, but expanded offerings and worldwide atten- tion over the last few years have pro- pelled Nashville to superstar status. In musical terms, the city has gone double- platinum. At the heart of Nashville's pop- ularity is the city's willingness to march to T E N N E S S E E AREA GUIDES Renasant Convention Center Photo Credit: Memphis Travel • • • STATS • • • HOTEL ROOMS Marriott Memphis East 232 Four Points by Sheraton Memphis East 123 The Peabody Memphis 464 DoubleTree by Hilton Memphis Downtown 277 Hilton Memphis 405 Sheraton Memphis Downtown Hotel 600 EXHIBITION FACILITIES Renasant Convention Center Total Exhibit Space 118,000. sq. ft.. Meeting Rooms 18 WHO YOU GONNA CALL? Memphis Travel – (901) 543-5300 Kermit Madison

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