Thursday, April 10, 2014

SMG ASSUMES MANAGEMENT OF BRANSON CONVENTION CENTER MARC MULHERIN ANNOUNCED AS GENERAL MANAGER

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SMG ASSUMES MANAGEMENT OF BRANSON CONVENTION CENTER MARC MULHERIN ANNOUNCED AS GENERAL MANAGER

(Conshohocken, PA, April 7, 2014)  -- SMG, the worldwide leader of public assembly facility management, commenced management of the Branson Convention Center as of April 1, 2014.  The firm was selected over two other firms in a recent request for proposals by the City of Branson.  In firming up the new on site management team, SMG announced the selection of Marc Mulherin as the Center’s new general manager.
“We are pleased to welcome the Branson Convention Center to our family of SMG-managed properties and are confident the facility will thrive under Marc’s leadership, combined with SMG’s booking network, client base and other resources and generate a greater economic impact for the city of Branson,” said Gregg Caren, SMG executive vice president for convention and exhibition centers. 
“Not only are we pleased to welcome SMG as the new facility management company, we are excited to attract a general manager with the energy and experience of Marc Mulherin’s caliber to direct operations here in Branson,” said City Administrator Bill Malinen, who serves as Branson’s chief executive officer.
SMG assumed managerial responsibility for the facility from Hilton Worldwide Corporation on April 1 and retained the majority of the existing venue staff. 
Mulherin is a hospitality industry veteran with more than 15 years of experience in convention center, arena and hotel management, most recently as the assistant general manager, director of food & beverage operations and director of capital & special projects for SAVOR at the SMG-managed McCormick Place in Chicago -- the largest convention center in the United States -- where he has been based since 2011. SAVOR, as part of the SMG portfolio, has provided retail and catering food and beverage services throughout the United States, Europe and Mexico since 1983.
He also was the food and beverage director for the TD Garden with Delaware North Companies/Sportservice and director of catering convention service and concessions for Interstate Hotels and Resorts’ Lancaster Marriott Hotel & Convention Center in Pennsylvania. Mulherin held managerial positions in catering, convention services and concessions with five convention centers for whom ARAMARK Corporation provides services, and in the hotel sector with the Hyatt Regency Hotels at resorts in Newport and Chicago, and Starwood Hotels and Resorts’ Sheraton Boston Hotel and Sheraton Braintree Hotel.
A graduate of Bryant University with a bachelor’s degree in business management, Mulherin is a member of the International Association of Venue Managers and the Professional Convention Management Association.
The Branson Convention Center, located in the Branson Landing development in a lakeside setting, offers 113,725 square feet of event space, including a 47,172-square-foot exhibit hall attached to a 22,703-square-foot ballroom on the first floor, and a dozen meeting room ranging from 1,000 to 5,000 square feet on the second floor. The technologically progressive venue can accommodate 4,000 guests and is supported by onsite catering, audiovisual, high-speed Internet and event management teams, with a single point of contact for all event-related services.
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Founded in 1977, SMG provides management services to more than 230 public assembly facilities including convention and exhibition centers, arenas, stadiums, theatres, performing arts centers, equestrian facilities, science centers and a variety of other venues. With facilities across the globe, SMG manages more than 14.4 million square feet of exhibition space and over 1.75 million sports and entertainment seats. As the recognized global industry leader, SMG provides venue management, sales, marketing, event booking and programming, construction and design consulting, and pre-opening services for such landmark facilities as McCormick Place and Soldier Field in Chicago, Moscone Convention Center in San Francisco, Houston’s Reliant Park and the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. 

Visit www.smgworld.com for more information.



Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Le Cordon Bleu Selects Montego Bay Convention Centre Chef


For Immediate Release
Montego Bay, Jamaica (February 11, 2014) Randie Anderson is the Executive Chef at the Montego Bay Convention Centre, and is regarded as one of Jamaica’s rising stars and most influential chef.  With several international accolades to his name, he presents modern-Jamaican cooking with an International influence at its best.   A culinary perfectionist, Chef Randi has worked alongside top celebrities in the food industry.
Chef Randi was recently awarded a scholarship to the highly commendable Le Cordon Bleu Masters of Gastronomic Tourism program.  Following a judging panel assessment, a highly commendable education professional partial scholarship from the Le Cordon Bleu has been granted to Chef Randie Anderson towards completion of his Masters in Gastronomic Tourism with the Southerncross University located in Australia.
Anderson was chosen for his demonstration in the following - passion and commitment, industry experience, levels of community engagement, diverse educational qualifications and backgrounds, focused career path and desire to share knowledge and expertise.
The program aims to provide graduates with as broad as possible an understanding of the potential to add value to food and wine tourism related business operations.  Crucially this understanding has social responsibility at its core.
Chef Randie at the end of the program will be both an innovator and protector of tradition, helping to revitalise and strengthen local and regional food cultures in Jamaica and the Caribbean.
“He’s got such talent and it’s fantastic to watch his trajectory towards international culinary success.” said Dittie Guise General Manager of the Montego Bay Convention Centre.
Ms. Guise said encouraging staff to further studies plays a role in maintaining a positive, supportive working environment at the Montego Bay Convention Centre.  She also pointed out that it was wonderful to see Randie get the recognition he deserves.  “It’s a win-win situation because it gives our chef the chance to further his own career while ensuring we deliver a world-class culinary experience to our clients.”
"I’ve won awards before but this placing made me feel especially proud because I put my heart and soul in my cooking,” says Chef Randie, I’m very thankful for the support of SMG.
The Montego Bay Convention centre is managed by SMG venue management, and its food and beverage division SAVOR has a wealth of experience in food preparation and service. The Centre is driven by a philosophy that incorporates the traditional values of exceptional service and the highest quality produce.   MBCC has consistently maintained its commitment to quality.
“We are proud to support Chef Randie’s passion for not only personal and professional development but also strengthening the local and regional culinary community through his acceptance in this prestigious program.” said Shaun Beard, SAVOR Senior Vice President.  “His motivation exemplifies our core values as a company as we strive to not only provide the best possible quality product and service but also support and participate in the communities we serve.”
The Montego Bay Convention centre is a revelation for the discerning pallet, accommodating up to 1600 patrons in its Ball room with an invigorating menu and bar selection.
Since it’s opening in 2011 the Montego Bay Convention Centre has been known to host some of the most prestigious banquets, offering a unique International dining experience, the venue has an atmosphere of relaxed elegance inspired by the exquisite cuisine and spectacular views.

For more information visit;  www.smgworld.com.
Contact
Michelle Parkes
Montego Bay Convention Centre
418-5181
mparkes@mobaycentre.com

JOHN BOLTON AND JEFF NICKLER PROMOTED WITHIN SMG

(Tulsa, Okla.) February 28, 2014 – SMG is pleased to announce John Bolton has been promoted to Vice President, SMG Entertainment.  Bolton is a 25 year industry veteran of which the last nine years have been with SMG in various venues.  Most recently, Bolton served as General Manager for SMG in Tulsa managing a multi-complex campus of venues. Jeff Nickler, current Assistant General Manager for the BOK Center, has been promoted to SMG General Manager of the BOK Center and Cox Business Center.
In addition to his role as General Manager, Bolton acted as a Regional Vice President for SMG for its venues in Puerto Rico and the West Coast.  John also serves as National Director of Marketing for SMG overseeing a regional network of Arena Marketing executives.  Additionally, John is the current Chair of the Board of Directors for the International Association of Venue Managers (IAVM) –representing more than 4,000 venue managers around the world.
In his past roles, John has been responsible for creating new events and festivals in every venue he has managed including five new festivals and self-created events in Tulsa that attract more than 200,000 people per year.    His success in the booking, programming, and marketing of venues has placed his venue as one of the consistent top 10 venues in the nation.
John will be relocating to the corporate office in March, and will join Senior Vice President of Entertainment Jim McCue to provide leadership and support for initiatives in booking, marketing and growing SMG.
“John Bolton has turned the BOK Center in Tulsa into a must play for all touring artists, clearly one of the hottest buildings in the US.  He is also a masterful marketing executive so adding his skills to our corporate booking team will allow us to further align out booking and marketing efforts for our SMG Stadiums and Arenas,” said Jim McCue, SVP of Entertainment for SMG.
“I am tremendously excited to join our corporate team.  I am looking forward to coordinating our booking and marketing efforts to maximize our brand and assist our clients nationally in achieving success,” said John Bolton.
Nickler joined the SMG Tulsa team in 2008 as Premium Services and Sales Manager and was an integral part of the Grand Opening team for the BOK Center. He also served as Special Events Manager and later Director of Booking and Special Events. In 2011, he was promoted to Assistant General Manager. Under Nickler’s leadership, the BOK Center completed successful bids to host the 2013 Bassmaster Classic and the 2011 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament Second and Third Rounds. As Director of Special Events, Nickler created and produced highly successful events including Rock ‘n Rib Festival, Winterfest, Dodgebrawl and others. As Assistant General Manager, Nickler’s primary role has been booking the BOK Center and developing new concert traffic for Tulsa.
“I have been fortunate to be part of our SMG team in Tulsa for the past seven years and I look forward to sustaining our city’s reputation as one of the country’s top markets for live entertainment,” Nickler said. “We can be very proud of what we have accomplished here at BOK Center and Cox Business Center and I am confident we can maintain our success while continuing to elevate Tulsa’s status on a national scale.”
Nickler will assume the responsibilities of General Manager in March.
Local leaders have responded with appreciation for Bolton’s accomplishments in Tulsa and excitement at Nickler’s expanded role as General Manager.
Mayor Dewey Bartlett said: “John has been integral in creating a world class successful arena in Tulsa.   We will miss him, but are excited he will remain involved in Tulsa not only with his new position, but also continuing to have regional oversight of both the BOK Center and Cox Business Center for SMG.”
We are excited that Jeff Nickler who has been involved with the BOK Center since day one will step up into the role as General Manager,” Bartlett added.
Mike Neal, President and CEO of the Tulsa Regional Chamber said:
"This promotion could not be more well-deserved. We have thoroughly enjoyed having John as a part of the Tulsa community, and his industry expertise has been integral in the development of the BOK Center as a top-ranked arena. Our biggest congratulations to him on this incredible promotion. He will be missed as he moves to SMG's corporate offices as Vice President.
The Chamber and VisitTulsa look forward to the continued growth of the BOK Center and Cox Business Center under the leadership of Jeff Nickler, who will continue to build on John's work and further enhance the wonderful impact of SMG, and their facilities, in the Tulsa community."
Former Tulsa Mayor Kathy Taylor, who played an important role in bringing Bolton to Tulsa said:
“As part of the initial selection committee who hired John Bolton in 2007, I couldn't be more pleased with the success he has achieved in Tulsa. Under his leadership, the BOK Center not only opened to overwhelming success but has sustained that same level of achievement over the past five years. I have full confidence in Jeff Nickler's ability to carry on that legacy.”

New Web Site, Logo Launches for Denny Sanford PREMIER Center

(Sioux Falls, SD)— Starting today, the Denny Sanford PREMIER Center has a new look and a new web site.
A new logo has been developed for the multi-purpose venue, scheduled to open in September. The logo features a spotlight effect on a rendering of the exterior of the building. Its debut coincides with today’s launch of www.dennysanfordpremiercenter.com, which will replace the existing websites for the Sioux Falls Arena,  Convention Center, and Orpheum Theater Center.
Designed by Lawrence and Schiller of Sioux Falls, www.dennysanfordpremiercenter.com features the latest website development technology and communications tools. Each venue has its own section on the website, color coded to help visitors find the information they’re looking for.
Social media feeds for Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram will appear on the website in real time to share photos and status updates. Photos from the many events held at each facility will be prominently featured on the website as well, including those submitted by the public.
“There will be more information to come as we get closer to the opening of the Denny Sanford PREMIER Center, especially when it comes to concert announcements this spring,” says Terry Torkildson, General Manager of SMG, which manages all four facilities. “Facility maps, seating charts, and other information are still being developed and will be added as they become available.”
While the calendar of events listings for the Events Center will grow in the near future, visitors to the website will find plenty of calendar listings for the other venues. The Arena section will feature upcoming events as well as ticketing information and visitor policies and information. The Convention Center section features information for convention, conference, meeting, and wedding planners and exhibitors. The Orpheum Theater section also offers information for event planners and wedding planning, as well as upcoming events and highlights of the historic theater’s recent centennial celebration. All sections will host resource pages for hotels, restaurants, and other Sioux Falls area features.
About the Denny Sanford PREMIER Center
The Denny Sanford PREMIER Center is a multipurpose facility that will host many different types of events including hockey, indoor football, basketball, rodeos, concerts, and so much more. The facility features three clubs and offers premium seating including private suites, loge boxes, and club seats. The Denny Sanford PREMIER Center is scheduled to open in the fall of 2014.

Colorado Convention Center Adds $235,000 of Art

DENVER – March 24, 2014 – The Colorado Convention Center, already known for its innovative public art that includes the 40-foot high Blue Bear peeking into the building, just added eight new pieces to its permanent collection. 

The additions are the result of a public-private partnership between the City & County of Denver and the convention center’s management firm, SMG, which commissioned the $235,000 project. Denver-based art consulting firm NINE dot ARTS was hired to select and install the new work.

The pieces, created by established and emerging local artists, were able to make use of the vast space in the convention center to create dramatic and engaging works. A 95-by-95 foot mural by Mindy Bray, titled “The Heavy is the Root of the Light,” covers an entire wall behind a two-story escalator. The painting is based on photographs of the Platte River at nearby Confluence Park, the site where gold was first discovered leading to the founding of Denver in 1858.

Another piece by Sandra Fettingis entitled “I Know You Know That I Know” is 160 feet long and spans an entire hallway in the convention center. The painting creates an environment that envelops the viewer in a repetitive pattern-filled corridor.

“Convention centers are also learning centers where people come to be engaged and broaden their knowledge, so it’s appropriate that art be an important part of the building’s environment,” said Kent Rice, executive director of Arts & Venues for the City of Denver, which oversees the Colorado Convention Center. The new convention center art became a cornerstone for the launch of Mayor Michael B. Hancock’s new cultural plan for Denver, IMAGINE 2020.

“Convention centers today must provide practical, green, efficient and easy to use space, but art and atmosphere are just as important to create surroundings that are conducive to learning and to conducting business,” said John Adams, general manager of the Colorado Convention Center.

Leaders from Denver Arts & Venues, VISIT DENVER, SMG and the Denver arts community served on a committee that worked with NINE dot ARTS to select the new pieces. The new additions focus on Denver artists and galleries and showcase both the city’s artistic forefathers such as Roland Bernier and Phil Bender as well as its next generation of creatives like Derrick Velasquez, Ian Fisher and Mindy Bray. 

Martha Weidmann, CEO and Co-Founder of NINE dot ARTS, said, “Half of the artists in the new slate are under thirty-five, which is impressive considering most public artists are over forty. For many of the artists this was the largest scale permanent installation they have ever worked at, including veteran artist Roland Bernier who installed the largest piece of his nearly 60 year career. The art committee showed an amazing vision and faith in Denver’s emerging talent to knockout results.”   

The new art adds to downtown Denver’s growing reputation as an art center. “Denver has a very progressive public art program, so as people walk from our 8,500 downtown hotel rooms to the convention center, they will encounter many other public artworks. There are also five art museums within walking distance of the center, so it’s wonderful to keep this feeling of being surrounded by art as you come into the building,” said Richard Scharf, president & CEO of VISIT DENVER.

Art has also become a symbol for the Colorado Convention Center. VISIT DENVER has incorporated one of the convention center’s older artworks, a 40-foot tall Blue Bear, officially titled “I See What You Mean” by Lawrence Argent, into an icon for the city and the lead element in the Bureau’s advertising campaign.

“The first thing you see coming into the convention center is the Blue Bear, and now as you walk through the two million square foot building, you will continue to encounter art everywhere you go,” Scharf said.

New Colorado Convention Center Public Art
·         "The Heavy is the Root of the Light" by Mindy Bray
·         "I Know You Know That I Know" by Sandra Fettingis
·         “Untitled” (Ocular series) by Mike McClung
·         "Wall of Words" by Roland Bernier
·         "Boulder Creek – Autumn 08 #1" by James Cook
·         "Atmosphere No. 27, 37 and 44" by Ian Fisher
·         "Untitled 88" by Derrick Velasquez
·         "License Plates" by Phil Bender

See all of Colorado Convention Center’s public art here.

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Photo captions/credits (Click here for hi-res photos.)

I Know You Know That I Know,” Artwork by Sandra Fettingis, Photography by Paul Brokering. Image courtesy of NINE dot ARTS®, art consultants for the Colorado Convention Center.

The Heavy is the Root of the Light,” Artwork by Mindy Bray, Photography by Paul Brokering. Image courtesy of NINE dot ARTS®, art consultants for the Colorado Convention Center.

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About VISIT DENVER, The Convention & Visitors Bureau
Celebrating more than 100 years of promoting the Mile High City, VISIT DENVER is a nonprofit trade association that contracts with the City of Denver to market Denver as a convention and leisure destination, increasing economic development in the city, creating jobs and generating taxes. A record 13.6 million visitors stayed overnight in Denver in 2012, generating $3.6 billion in spending, while supporting nearly 50,000 jobs, making Tourism the second largest industry in Denver. Learn more about Denver on the VISITDENVER website and at TOURISMPAYSDENVER or by phone at 800 2 Denver. Follow Denver’s social media channels for up-to-the-minute updates at: Facebook.com/VISITDENVER; Twitter.com/IKnowDenver; Instagram.com/VISITDENVER and YouTube.com/VISITDENVER.

With press or photo inquiries, please contact:
Rich Grant: (303) 571-9450 or rgrant@visitdenver.com
Debbie Park: (303) 571-9451 or dpark@visitdenver.com
Sarah Welch: (303) 571-9418 or swelch@visitdenver.com


Monday, October 28, 2013

NBA Pre-Season Takes to The Court in SMG Venues Around the Country


SMG venues across the country played host to several NBA pre-season games.  Fans in Baltimore, Canton, Jacksonville, Manchester, Providence, Tulsa and Wichita got a sneak peek at the 2013-2014 NBA teams. SMG’s Executive Vice President of Stadiums & Arenas, Doug Thornton said “we are excited to be a part of the NBA pre-season bringing professional basketball to our SMG venues around the country.”

The Celtics, Charlotte Bobcats, Cleveland Cavaliers, New Orleans Pelicans, NY Knicks, Oklahoma City Thunder, Orlando Magic and Washington Wizards all had an opportunity show off their skills to fans in a variety of cities.  These pre-season games have been a boon for arenas and secondary markets that seldom have the opportunity to host NBA games.

Baylor University Selects SMG to Manage New Football Stadium

SMG, the worldwide leader in venue management, has been selected by Baylor University to provide pre-opening and management services for its new football facility, Baylor Stadium, scheduled to open in August of 2014. The selection strengthens SMG’s portfolio of collegiate clients, which includes the University of Virginia (John Paul Jones Arena), the University of Pittsburgh (Peterson Arena), Tulane University (Yulman Stadium), Fresno State University (Save Mart Center), Iowa State University (Iowa State Center), and others.