By Beth Buehler
You just received word that the annual conference you attend or the strategic planning meeting you’ve been invited to is being held in a town you have been dying to visit. Shall we say Vail, Colorado Springs, Steamboat Springs, Boulder, Glenwood Springs or another one of Colorado’s amazing cities and mountain towns? Perhaps you can bring your family or a significant other along! All of the sudden attending sounds extremely attractive.
When scheduling a meeting or event in a great destination, why not work with the community’s destination marketing organization (CVB, tourism board, etc.) or your destination management company/meeting planner to offer fun things for attendees to enjoy before and after the meeting? This is a great way for people to take some vacation time and explore the destination in more depth, or perhaps you add on extras as a “thank you” or incentive for top performers or a client.
4 Entertaining Ideas to Consider
- Outdoor Adventures – One of Colorado’s biggest assets is that an outdoor adventure is never far away. Consider what your attendees might enjoy and offer a few options knowing some prefer soft, medium or hardcore levels. In the summer or fall, perhaps the selection includes rafting, fly-fishing, a photo safari, overnight pack trip on horseback, and a half-day hike with llamas along for the journey. In winter, dog sledding, snowshoeing to dinner at a yurt, and a snowcat/helicopter skiing outing to find untracked snow are among the many possibilities.
- Cultural Expeditions – Find out what theater productions, concerts, museum exhibitions, festivals or gallery tours are available in the Colorado town where your meeting or event is being held. Who says you can’t explore nearby towns so attendees get to experience two places?
- Culinary Connections – Colorado is at the forefront of brewery tours (even on bikes!), culinary walking tours, on-farm dinners, and pairing dinners that involve local spirits, brews and wine. Are your taste buds watering?
- Ultimate Relaxation – Not everyone wants to be on the go non-stop so part of a pre or post getaway might be just kicking back. Spa treatments with a unique twist, yoga sessions with massive views, a wellness day with a personal trainer or coach, or a day lounging by one of the beautiful indoor and outdoor pools at many Colorado hotels and resorts may be just the ticket. Or perhaps your attendees view time on a tennis court or golf course as a relaxing day away from the office or the daily grind.
This is just a small sampling of the many amazing options available for pre and post add-ons in the Centennial State. Attendees will appreciate not having to do their own planning and hopefully talk about the great meeting or event they attended for years to come!
Beth Buehler is editor of Colorado Meetings + Events and Mountain Meetings magazines, has planned numerous meetings and events and enjoys exploring Colorado in all seasons.