Toronto wins major convention



    
    97th Annual Lions Clubs International Convention takes place in Toronto
    in 2014
    

    TORONTO, April 3 /CNW/ - Tourism Toronto announced today that Toronto has
won the 97th Annual Lions Clubs International Convention for 2014. The
convention to be held from June 27-July 10, 2014 is expected to draw 15,000
attendees from around the world, representing 35,426 total hotel room night
bookings and an estimated visitor spending in Toronto of over $20 million.
    "Toronto's top-notch facilities, attractions and multiculturalism made it
an obvious choice for our international convention," said Joseph Wroblewski,
Chairperson, International Convention Committee. "We anticipate being able to
provide our delegates with a unique and memorable experience in 2014 because
of what Toronto has to offer."
    Just prior to the convention the District Governors Elect, which is a key
group of decision makers for the Lions Club International, will hold its
annual convention in Toronto. Then on July 6 to kick off the main convention
and welcome the group to Toronto, there will be an International Parade of
Delegates running south on University Avenue from Queen's Park, ending at the
Metro Toronto Convention Centre.

    Toronto growing in stature as a convention destination

    In 2008, Toronto was ranked the number one convention city in Canada by
North American meeting planners, and one of the top five in all of North
America.(1)
    Last year, Tourism Toronto and its partners booked future conventions
totalling 513,621 hotel room nights. This translates to $148 million in
visitor spending in the Toronto area and is a 19 per cent increase over the
previous year. Among those are 14 citywide (using at least three hotels)
conventions, which add up to 196,000 future room nights.
    Also in 2008, Tourism Toronto booked its largest convention to be held in
Toronto, exceeding 25,000 delegates. The American Institute of Architects'
annual meeting will take place in June 2017 and result in 55,000 hotel room
nights and an estimated $24 million in visitor spending in the Toronto region.
    "Conventions are a vital component of a strong tourism industry," said
David Whitaker, President & CEO of Tourism Toronto. "They provide a solid
foundation of business, booked years in advance. Conventions represent job
opportunities for our community and great visitor experiences for our guests."

    Strong start in 2009 with five major convention wins

    Despite challenges in the global meetings market, Toronto has shown
itself to be competitive as a convention destination. In addition to the Lions
Clubs International convention, Tourism Toronto has confirmed four other
future citywide meetings thus far in 2009:

    
    -   International Society of Arthroscopy, Knee Surgery & Orthopaedic
        Sports Medicine - May 2013 with 3,300 attendees
    -   American Association for Thoracic Surgery - April 2014 with 4,500
        attendees
    -   National Medical Association - July 2013 with 6,500 attendees
    -   American Society of Plastic Surgeons - October 2020 with 6,000
        attendees

    Also this year, Toronto will welcome approximately 100 groups of 500 or
more attendees. Some of the larger conventions taking place in 2009 are:

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Group                                           Date (2009)    Attendees
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Geological Association of Canada/Mining
     Association of Canada/American Geological
     Union Joint Meeting                            May 24-27          6,000
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    American Industrial Hygiene Association         May 26-June 7     10,000
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Society of Nuclear Medicine                     June 9-20          7,000
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    North American Roller Hockey Championships      July 8-27         12,500
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    American Podiatric Medical Association          July 25-Aug 3      3,500
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    American Political Science Association          Aug 30-Sep 8       6,000
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    American Psychological Association              Aug 3-10          15,000
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    ASAE and the Centre for Association Leadership  Aug 10-21          6,750
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Association for Operations Management           Sep 30-Oct 9       3,000
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    American Association of Oral &
     Maxillofacial Surgeons                         Oct 9-18           4,000
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Union for Reform Judaism                        Oct 31-Nov 9       5,000
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    About Tourism Toronto

    Tourism Toronto, Toronto's Convention and Visitors Association, is an
industry association of more than 1,200 members established to strategically
sell and market the Greater Toronto Region as a remarkable destination for
tourists, convention delegates and business travellers around the globe. For
more information on Tourism Toronto, please visit www.seeTorontonow.com.

    (1) Watkins Research Group, Inc., 2008 Meeting and Convention Planners
        Survey
    





For further information:

For further information: Cathy Riches, Corporate Communications
Specialist, Tourism Toronto, (416) 987-9077, criches@torcvb.com


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