BOBBIE PATTERSON Executive Director ✪ Boise Convention & Visitors Bureau Meetings With a Personal Touch
What challenge do you think the meetings industry has successfully overcome in the past year or so? What’s the big- gest challenge facing the industry in 2012? The biggest challenge is a better understanding between planners and suppliers on how to make the economy work for both sides. Planners need facilities to comp the use of meeting space, while buildings face challenges like reduced revenue to the point where they can’t make debt obligations. It’s an ongoing issue beyond 2012.
How has your organization responded to group requests to incorporate CSR initiatives into their meetings? We’ve created a “menu” of ways groups can give back to the community. For example, Boise’s “Chefs to the Rescue” program donates leftover food from events to local homeless shelters.
What single asset makes you most proud to represent your destination?
We find that in Boise it’s not what people saw or did, it’s a personal connection they made to the destination. About 85 percent of first-time visitors say, “I think I could live here.” n