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November 30, 2013

Hoping for harvest after planting of seeds

NORMAN — The last month has been the time for planting at the Norman Convention and Visitors Bureau as the sales team attended three consecutive shows across the country.

Our certified meeting professional first attended Rejuvenate Marketplace in Daytona Beach, Fla. The show gathered meeting planners within the religious market. Because of Norman's central location in the U.S. and its convenience for drivers and flyers, this segment is one in which the Norman CVB has been able to attract groups to choose Norman. Just last spring, the Baptist Missionaries Association of America gathered in Norman at the Embassy Suites Hotel and Convention Center, for example.

The following week, she attended Teams '13 Conference and Expo in Salt Lake City. During this conference, she met with various sports planning professionals and other tournament presenters. Although not every appointment she has during the event flips for instant gratification during the show, one did. Run or Dye, which presents themed 5K runs throughout the U.S., will be bringing an event to Norman in 2014.

The third show she attended was a smaller conference in the religious market, Aspire, in Colorado Springs. This was a new conference for the Norman CVB to attend in 2013, thanks in part to the increase in the transient guest tax collection the voters passed in April 2013.

Now that the planting is complete, the CVB staff will be cultivating the contacts made at the three shows, laying the seeds for a future harvest.

Stefanie Brickman is the interim executive director of the Norman Convention and Visitors Bureau. The vision of NCVB is to be the leader who proactively markets and develops Norman as the preferred destination in Oklahoma.

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