VIBE Conference: Time Well SpentNovember 30, 2009 By: Donna Hood Crecca
The industry is abuzz about the upcoming VIBE Conference and we’re fielding lots of questions about the exciting new event that’s taking place at the Palazzo in Las Vegas March 9 – 10. To make sure you’re getting the most out of the premier conference developed exclusively for chain beverage executives, here is some important information.
VIBE stands for Very Important Beverage Executives, referring to the role of national accounts professionals in the on-premise drinks business. These are the people responsible for the high-volume, high-quality beverage programs in place at multiunit restaurants across the U.S.
What makes the VIBE Conference special? For one, its laser focus on the chain beverage business made possible through the experience of the team behind the event. VIBE is produced by Questex Media Group in partnership with BSI/WFV Partners, led by Bruce Iler, Sharyn Iler and Laddie Weiss, who are seasoned professionals in the chain beverage industry and conference management. Donna Hood Crecca, Editorial Director of Nightclub & Bar, also is involved, bringing nearly two decades of covering beverage in chain restaurants to the venture.
Also, the timing and location make it a stand-out event. The VIBE Conference overlaps the Nightclub & Bar Convention and Trade Show, which takes place March 8-10 in Las Vegas. VIBE is the newest component of International Hospitality Week, which incorporates the Nightclub & Bar Show and is owned by Questex Media Group. The timing of VIBE is intentional to give attendees access to these other events as a way of making travel time and dollars more productive. Scheduling allows VIBE attendees to take advantage of Nightclub & Bar Show offerings. For example, VIBE attendees can participate in Nightclub & Bar Show seminars on Monday, March 8, and are provided exclusive access to the Nightclub & Bar exhibit floor from 10 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. on Tuesday, March 9, with transportation provided between the Palazzo and the Las Vegas Convention Center for convenience. A VIBE attendee badge also provides admission to Nightclub & Bar Show, HotelWorld F&B Expo and International Restaurant Show exhibit floors, seminars and evening activities.
And, of course, the lineup of speakers and presentations is second to none. The VIBE Conference Program kicks off at 2 p.m. on Tuesday, March 9. The program is directed at the business needs of corporate level on-premise beverage buyers and chain decision-makers including owners, operators, beverage directors, marketing executives and F&B executives of national account restaurant chains, hotel chains, casinos and cruise ship companies. Highlights include keynote presentations by Rich Melman, chairman & founder of Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises, who will be joined by sons Jerrod Melman and R.J. Melman, and an address by futurist, innovation and trends expert Jim Carroll. Also on the agenda are Elizabeth DeConti of GrayRobinson, P.A. and Stephen Barth of HospitalityLawyer.com, providing their expert insights on critical issues relative to recent litigation and the legal landscape regarding alcohol sales and marketing.
VIBE Ideas into Action Interactive Workshops take place Tuesday and Wednesday afternoon and feature exclusive research and expert presenters. The sessions are designed to engage all attendees and deliver actionable information that can be immediately applied to grow your beverage business. Click here for the full agenda.
The VIBE Vista Awards, presented on Wednesday, March 10, promises to be a highlight of the conference. What better way to demonstrate the value of your beverage program than to win a peer award for it? Click here for information on categories and to enter. But hurry — the deadline for entries is Dec. 9.
Finally, VIBE hits the right mix of networking events, conference sessions and free time. The VIBE Wi-Fi Lounge opens at 1 p.m. on Monday, March 8 and again at 7:30 a.m. on Tuesday and 8 a.m. on Wednesday, giving attendees a comfortable space to meet and network and also stay connected to their businesses. Networking breaks between the workshops are 30 minutes, providing time to catch up with colleagues and partners attending the event and also touch base with the home office. The VIBE Grand Opening Celebration on Tuesday evening (6 – 8 p.m.) and the Sensational Sips event on Wednesday (5:30 – 7 p.m.) allows time to socialize, network and relax and then head out to enjoy all that Las Vegas and International Hospitality Week have to offer.
Look for ongoing updates about the VIBE Conference in upcoming editions of the VIBE newsletter, and visit www.vibeconference.com for more information.