ICVA books big library convention-WEB ONLY

The Indianapolis Convention & Visitors Association said today that it has booked the Chicago-based American Library Association’s 2021 annual midwinter meeting.

The group will use every meeting room in the Indiana Convention Center, as well as all meeting rooms in surrounding hotels, ICVA said.

The ALA holds its midwinter meeting in January. It is estimated that members will spend $11.6 million here and book 18,585 hotel-room nights.

The group’s most recent Midwinter Meeting, in Denver from Jan. 23-28, drew more than 10,000 attendees for about 2,000 meetings and events, the ALA said.

ICVA said it was particularly pleased to land such a large January event. The month is usually a slow one for big conventions.

Large organizations such as the ALA reserve convention space many years in advance. Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Philadelphia, San Diego and Seattle are among the cities hosting future ALA midwinter meetings.

Indianapolis’ convention-center expansion and the new 1,300-room JW Marriott hotel complex, both scheduled to be completed next year, were integral in landing the convention. Without the developments, the city would not have met the minimum criteria to host the group, ICVA president and CEO Don Welsh said.

“As a result of the Indiana Convention Center expansion, the new hotel package and the continued enhancements of our downtown facilities, the American Library Association is the type of customer we are now able to attract,” Welsh said via e-mail. “It is our furthest booking out, and we’re thrilled to have them in Indianapolis for the first time in their history.”

The not-for-profit ALA was founded in Philadelphia in 1876 and has 65,000 members, including librarians, library trustees and publishers. It serves public, state, school and academic libraries, in addition to specialty libraries for institutions such as the armed services, hospitals and prisons.

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