Black Meetings and Tourism

July/Aug 2013

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•Pg_44-58_ICI__BMT_pg86-162 8/12/13 9:03 PM Page 52 AREA GUIDES PORTLAND PORTLAND, WHERE NATURE MEETS THE CONFERENCE ROOM BY REGGIE MURPHY Set against the backdrop of majestic Mount Hood, Portland combines a sophisticated, cosmopolitan atmosphere with refreshingly friendly, small-town warmth that makes it a natural for tours of all types. In Portland, "community" means many things. Whether united by geography, heritage or orientation, mutual respect and tolerance is the common ideal that binds members of the city's many communities. You want a unique place for a meeting and affordable accommodations to match. You want great culture, memorable meals and delicious microbrews with no side order of sales tax. You want delegates to be zipped easily from the airport to the convention center while being easy on the environment, too. You're not asking for too much. You just want a place like Portland. This vibrant city has meeting planners and leisure travelers covered with plenty of options when it comes to venues to hold large and small meetings as well as many exciting activities and cultural experiences individuals can delve into. The Oregon Convention Center (OCC) is the largest convention facility in the Pacific Northwest. The center offers 255,000 sq. ft. of contiguous exhibit space, 50 meeting rooms, two grand ballrooms, full-service catering and an 800-space underground parking garage. Visitors can get to and from the downtown hotel core and Portland International Airport with ease via MAX light rail. In 2012, OCC unveiled a 30,000-sq. ft., multi-use outdoor space directly across the street from the center's main lobby. The new plaza has power and water hook-ups and balances an 11,000-sq. ft. paved area, perfect for booth setups or open air receptions, with treelined streets and a grassy area. Portland offers a wide array of top-level hotels offering plentiful meeting space as well as sufficient guest room space for conference attendees and leisure travelers alike. Holiday Inn Portland Airport Hotel & Conference Center, Embassy Suites Portland Downtown, Portland Marriott City Center, and the Hilton Garden Inn - Portland Airport are just a few of the top choices business travelers stay at while in this magnificent destination. Today, the heart of Portland's African52 Oregon Convention Center American community is the Albina district, where vibrant green, yellow and red banners celebrate the teachings of Martin Luther King Jr. along the boulevard named in his honor. In the Pearl District, Black Portlanders like jazz drummer Mel Brown and blues vocalist Linda Hornbuckle regularly take the stage at Jimmy Mak's, considered one of the world's top jazz venues. Portland celebrates Black History Month with the Portland Jazz Festival every February. Leading the charge is local entrepreneur Roy Jay, president & CEO of the Oregon Convention & Visitor Services Network and major player in the Alliance of Minority Chambers of Commerce. Give him a call to get started planning your event in Portland. Business travelers R OY J AY are sure to find something interesting and entertaining to get into with the rich cultured experiences the city has to offer year round. The Safeway Waterfront Blues Festival brings top national stars to downtown Portland over the weekend of the Fourth of July. The Cathedral Park Jazz Festival is held under the historic St. Johns Bridge over a mid-July weekend. B M & T ••• July/August 2013 ••• Photo Credit: Portland CVB The Portland International Airport (PDX) services most major airlines with daily flights to most cities and offers meeting planners a valuable meeting venue for conference attendees all at once. The PDX Conference Center is the perfect location for any small to mid-size event, providing the flexibility of seven rooms with space to accommodate groups from five to 65. • • • STATS • • • HOTEL ROOMS Holiday Inn Portland Airport Hotel & Conference Center 284 Embassy Suites Portland Downtown 276 Portland Marriott City Center 249 Hilton Garden Inn - Portland Airport 88 EXHIBITION FACILITIES Oregon Convention Center Total Exhibit Space Largest Ballroom Meeting Rooms 255,000 sq. ft. 35,700 sq. ft. 50 WHO YOU GONNA CALL? Oregon Convention & Visitors Services Network (800) 909-2882, Ext. 245 African-American Chamber of Commerce of Oregon (800) 909-2882

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