Downtown Impact

0 Comments 📅May 21st, 2013, 19:23

I love being a part of the downtown Knoxville business, hotel and tourism community. Recently, we have been experiencing some of our busiest months ever at the Knoxville Convention Center. And when the Convention Center is busy, all our downtown partners benefit.

In the past year, we have had some large conferences come through the center, and our downtown neighbors have taken notice. Several business owners have commented on the boost in business they’ve received from these conferences, and I couldn’t be prouder of our sales team and staff for bringing this economic impact to downtown. These meetings include:

  • The Annual Meeting of the American Physical Anthropology Society of America in April welcomed more than 1,000 participants.
  • The U.S. First Robotics Competition in March brought 1,500 students and 2,500 adults from across the region to Knoxville.
  • The American Society for Entomologists in November hosted 3,000 scientists.

These are just a few examples and with the center located only a few short blocks away from Knoxville’s charming downtown area, our guests stay in downtown hotels and spread across the area searching for places to eat, shop and play.

That is really the main goal and purpose of the center: to drive tourism to Knoxville and demonstrate Knoxville’s numerous assets to our visitors. Our guests create significant annual economic impact on the local businesses and organizations located here. It is always highly validating to receive feedback that our hard work is impacting downtown business, and we’ve recently received thank you notes that I’d like to share.

In April, we received a note from one of our downtown neighbors, the Preservation Pub, thanking us for driving business to the establishment through our scientific conferences.

“We got great groups from the Anthropologists Conference this week, as well as the entomologists not too long ago. We got this message today too: ‘Your Moonshine Roof Garden was a fun and popular destination during our PHYSOR 2012 conference last April.’ Thanks Knoxville Convention Center! Keep booking them scientists!” – Bernadette and Scott West

Another one of our neighbors, Pete Natour, owner of Pete’s diner, a popular restaurant and lunch stop for our guests, told us recently that he sees a huge boost in his business during our conferences.

“These conferences really drive traffic and benefit every business located in downtown. I’m always grateful when I have a heads up that a convention or conference is coming, so I can have more staff in the restaurant. We get so busy that our lines are out the door!” – Pete Natour

On behalf of the Convention Center, I’d like to return the favor and thank our downtown business partners. Restaurants, bars and shops like Pete’s Coffee Shop and Preservation Pub, make Knoxville a fun, engaging place to visit and make our job of attracting groups to Knoxville easy. These great establishments help us continue to attract new events, conferences, meeting and conventions to this great city.

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