Black Meetings and Tourism

July/Aug 2013

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•pg_19-29_ICI__BMT_pg3-58 8/12/13 6:49 PM Page 27 Paramount Theater {Charlottesville} The entertainment scene rivals that of any big city. Sheryl Crow, JayZ, Elton John, U2 and Lady Gaga are a few of the stars that have performed here recently. The 15,000-seat John Paul Jones Arena and the historic Paramount Theater are great places to catch your favorite artist. Outdoor enthusiasts will love hiking, camping and horseback riding along the region's many trails. If you want to go it alone, the area offers acres of land and water to choose from. Try the Rivanna Trail or the 100 plus miles of the Appalachian Trail in nearby Shenandoah National Park. The African American Cultural Arts Festival is held in late July each year. The Carter G. Woodson Institute of African-American & African Studies at the University of Virginia has several events throughout the year worth attending. Meeting facilities in the region include the multi-media ready John Paul Jones Arena at the UVA. This facility can house large tradeshows with up to 200 vendors or a reception for up to 600 guests at the versatile Courtside Club. Keswick Hall at Monticello has 7,000 sq. ft. of meeting space and 600-acres of outdoor space to stage those special events. Also, many of the local vineyards have space for social gathering and of course a little wine tasting along the way. The Martin Luther King, Jr., Performing Arts Center features a 1,276-seat auditorium, with a spacious lobby for receptions and several classrooms that can be used as meeting rooms. The city has a wide range of hotels, inns and bed & breakfasts. The prestigious Boar's Head Inn, run by the UVA features 170 rooms with a spa, golf course, gym, squash facilities and indoor tennis courts. UVA plays their tennis matches at this facility. The 573-acre property offers 22,000 sq. ft. of meeting space spread out among 19 meeting rooms, including two ballrooms. The two largest hotels are the DoubleTree with 235-rooms and 20,000 sq. ft. of meeting space including a 4,850-sq. ft. ballroom and Omni Charlottesville Hotel downtown with 13,000 sq. ft. of meeting space. The city is served by USAir, American Airlines, Delta and United. If you love train rides Amtrak is a great option, just over two hours from Washington DC. To learn more about Charlottesville go to or if you need to plan an event email Brigitte BelangerWarner at While our list is by no means all-inclusive, the superior quality of the overall experience makes these destinations worthy of consideration. We often seek locations that breed familiarity. It's time to live a little and take on a unique or new destination. There is nothing in America that can replace the feel Juneau and surrounding wilderness or the pastoral settings of Charlottesville and the Virginia countryside. Mother Nature is awesome. While Chicago, Atlanta, Orlando and New Orleans are great places for any group, the nearby towns of Aurora, IL; East Point, GA; Kissimmee, FL and Hammond, LA offer everything their big city brethren has to offer and a few things they don't, like easy access and a small town feel. B M & T ••• July/August 2013 ••• 27

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