For years, the Fox Cities and downtown Appleton have been a destination for meeting and event planners. Our area offers an appealing mix of activities, dining options, and affordable facilities, making it a top-of-mind choice for both meeting planners and conference attendees.
With the opening of the 38,000sq ft Fox Cities Exhibition Center this past January, new doors were opened, so-to-speak, as larger conventions that previously could not fit in our largest meetings space in the Fox Cities, the Radisson Paper Valley Hotel, can now come and experience all that our area has to offer.
As a business owner or local resident, you might be asking what does this facility mean for me. The answer to that is simple…more foot traffic. At its full capacity, the Fox Cities Exhibition Center can hold 2,100 people in a banquet set-up. That is in addition to any events that could be happening at the Radisson Paper Valley Hotel, which itself offers 38,000sq ft of space.
These potential convention attendees don’t only attend educational sessions and lay their heads in a hotel room at night. On average, the convention attendee spends $251.00 per night that they are here. That per-night spend includes lodging, food, drinks, and entertainment. It is our experience, that convention planners and attendees enjoy getting outside of the four walls of a meeting facility and really experiencing the city they are in. This includes making reservations at area restaurants, planning group activities at area museums or taking in other activities such as a Timber Rattlers baseball game or Broadway show at the Fox Cities Performing Arts Center, just to name a few. This all equates to those businesses seeing more foot traffic and thus, making more money which benefits the business, its employees and overall, our local economy as a whole.
We look forward to what the future holds for downtown Appleton and the rest of the Fox Cities as we continue to sell our destination to meetings and sports planners as well as leisure visitors. Our tourism destination is thriving and with the opening of the Fox Cities Exhibition Center, now even more people will be able to experience all our area has to offer.
Written by Mary Rhode, Marketing & Communications Manager for the Fox Cities Convention and Visitors Bureau