Missouri Meetings & Events’ 13th annual St. Louis Regional Expo was held at the Sheraton Clayton Plaza Hotel on May 19 and 20, 2014. Exhibitors and event planners traveled from all over Missouri to partake in this amazing event. The environment was a supportive and engaging one as exhibitors and planners networked, educational sessions were offered, and the meeting and event industry was celebrated.
Ready, Set, Expo!
Planners and exhibitors arrived for booth set up during the expo kickoff on Monday, May 19. In the afternoon, education sessions were offered for planners and exhibitors in the gallery level of the hotel. Det. Trent Koppel and Frank Spohr presented on topics covering branding and web design to attendees on Monday afternoon. After the conclusion of the educational sessions, meeting planners met for an exclusive reception, compliments of the hotel. Hors-d’oeuvres and cocktails were provided as well as a vibrant setting for business networking. Following this reception, Missouri Meetings & Events held its own reception and MEET® Business Exchange for the expo’s planners and exhibitors. Many connections were made that night as planners met with exhibitors to book new business. Wonderful food and drinks, provided by the Sheraton, were available throughout the reception. Record-A-Hit Entertainment brought more enjoyment to the evening by offering personalized souvenirs. The night concluded with prizes to four lucky winners who participated in the MEET® Business Exchange.
Tuesday began with a breakfast reception and a “Food and Beverage Elevated” presentation by Malissa Cloven from Vivant Entertainment and Dana Jones from the Historic Sappington House. Afterward, the expo floor opened for networking and business exchanges. Planners worked both ballroom levels, meeting new exhibitors and booking future business.
Mid-morning, five concurrent educational sessions took place. For example, Dave Gillette and Chris Sisson spoke on streamlined video for events while Anne Churchill spoke on meeting & event Planning. Afterward, the expo floor was open once again for more networking opportunities and business bookings.
The day wrapped up with a lunch reception held by Missouri Meetings & Events and the Sheraton Clayton Plaza Hotel. Leeky Behrman gave a touching presentation during lunch on the topic of her upcoming book, “The Choices We Make: A Memoir about Surviving and a Journey to Love and Happiness.” Joe Clote, group publisher of Missouri Meetings & Events Magazine, took to the podium to award Jerry Shackette, associate professor from the College of the Ozarks/Keeter Center, the inaugural Educator of the Year 2014 award. Dave Gillette, owner of Charity Resource LLC, also was presented an award for the best “It’s All About M.E.” video. As lunch concluded, prizes were awarded to planners and exhibitors alike. The Sheraton Clayton Plaza Hotel and American av won the “It’s All About M.E.” award for the most creative theme. Pole Position Raceway won the Editor’s Choice Award for the exhibit that was the most creative with or without the theme. And lastly, Candy House Gourmet Chocolates won the Planner’s Choice Award for best new exhibit. Once the awards wrapped up, closing remarks were presented.
The entire expo was a success and planners and exhibitors left with new friends and business contacts. If you missed this great educational opportunity, mark your calendar for Missouri Meetings & Events’ Kansas City Regional Expo, coming this fall.