plenary THERE'S A MEETING FOR THAT? Bring the Heat
Jazzercise ‘Tropic Heat’ More than 2,000 Jazzercise instructors and enthusiasts took over the Hilton Orlando on June 29–30 during the 2012 fitness convention and expo.
Jazzercise Tropic Heat + Joint Congress on Evolutionary Biology
Technology Meets Biology at Record-Breaking Event
1 Exercisers joined for a live taping of new Jazzercise routines.
2 Jazzercise Founder and CEO Judi Sheppard Missett choreographed and led the routine, which will be sent to 7,800 Jazzercise instructors around the world.
3 Five consecutive giant group-fitness classes featured themes like “Bikini Body Blast” and “Sultry Salsa.”
4 The wildly popular fitness phenomenon is practiced in 32,000 classes held weekly in 32 countries.
MEETING First Joint Congress on Evolutionary Biology, the largest-ever evolution and ecology conference, which brought together the American Society of Naturalists (ASN), the Canadian Society for Ecology and Evolution (CSEE), the European Society for Evolutionary Biology (ESEB), the Society for the Study of Evolution (SSE), and the Society of Systematic Biologists (SSB) at the Ottawa Conven- tion Centre on July 6–10. More than 2,400 scientists from 45 countries attended.
CHALLENGES The principal meeting planner for the event, Chuck Shouwerwou, CMP, president of ConferSense Planners, had the task of creating a cohesive environment for five of the world’s largest academic organizations — each with unique missions and cultures — across one large event. (Read our Pre Con profile of the First Joint Congress at convn.org/ evolution-pre-con.) In addition to the main confer- ence, there were numerous satellite events for each of the participating groups, giving Shouwerwou a number of gaps to bridge. Over the course of four days, there were approxi-
mately 1,300 presentations covering the latest news and developments in the evolutionary sciences — including one breakthrough in which geneticists evolved a species of fruit fly with the ability to count. Shouwerwou was able to broadcast the talks via a new automated audiovisual system, from AVW- TELAV, that projected them onto large screens in meeting rooms throughout the convention center, with anywhere from 90 to 500 attendees in each room. “It’s a new concept, [a] very new system,” Shouwerwou said. “We were able to program all the presentations through one command system. There were speakers every 15 minutes, so when you have that many talks in that many rooms, this centralized system makes it run smoothly.” The tool was vital for the congress, which drew
2,440 attendees — a record-breaking number for the center, which opened in April 2011. Shouwerwou said: