The New Year will be here before you know it, and that means the industry's leading independent planners are getting ready to head to St. Pete Beach, Fla., for Northstar Meetings Group's annual Independent Planner Education Conference. Registration is now open for the Jan. 26-29, 2020, event, tailored exclusively for the unique needs of independent meeting planners not associated with large third-party networks. Read on to learn more about IPEC.
A Peek at IPEC's Past
At IPEC 2020, independent planners will enjoy meeting face-to-face with top destinations, hotels and resorts, cruise lines, CVBs, DMCs, DMOs and tourism offices from across the nation and the U.K. Attendees will participate in one-on-one, prescheduled appointments, gain industry insights from top speakers, network with this exclusive group and, of course, enjoy Florida's beautiful St. Pete Beach. To get a better feel for what's to come, check out the following photos from last year's IPEC, held in San Antonio, Texas.
Independent Planner Paradise
Northstar Meetings Group will fully host all qualified independent planners, including providing airfare to and from St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport; accommodations at the 277-room Don CeSar Hotel; all meals and beverages, and participation in activities that will provide attendees with a true taste of Florida's Gulf Coast hospitality (think cocktails, fun, food and all that the destination has to offer). Attendees will participate in:
- Two days of one-on-one meetings with U.S.- and U.K.-based suppliers and properties;
- Insightful educational presentations and activities;
- Great meals, receptions and networking opportunities;
- CSR initiatives and activities; and
- Unique experiential activities showcasing St. Pete Beach as a meetings and incentive destination.
If you're ready to register for the 2020 Independent Planner Education Conference, click here. To learn more about why past buyers say this event is the top networking and education experience in the industry, reach out to Dana Kallman, buyer development manager, Northstar Travel Media, at [email protected]
Planners at IPEC will have the opportunity to meet with top suppliers from around the nation and across the Atlantic, including full-service event production company PSAV, South Carolina's Explore Charleston and Pennsylvania-based Hershey Resorts. Among the many other suppliers are:
With wellness travel continually on the rise, IPEC 2020 will welcome John Ayo, a travel wellness expert, keynote speaker, naturopath and author who inspires and empowers professionals to stay energized, healthy and balanced while traveling. Ayo will address all IPEC attendees on wellness tips, not only as they relate to the physical aspect of traveling, but also for interacting with peers, colleagues and industry associates.
Ayo will focus specifically on the art of communication, whether that be in front of a crowd or during face-to-face discussions. Attendees will learn the mechanics of preparation, how to shape the content and structure of their messaging, the importance of visuals in getting points across, the art and science of verbal delivery and ways to enhance one's stage presence.
A Sunny Site
Sitting right on the St. Pete Beach waterfront, the Don CeSar, our IPEC 2020 host property, has a storied past. Opened in the heyday of the Gatsby Era in 1928, the hotel has been welcoming travelers for nearly a century. From serving as high society's playground to starring on the silver screen (in Sergio Leone's 1984 classic Once Upon a Time in America, starring Robert De Niro) to being a Gulf Coast icon, the Don CeSar surrounds its guests in luxury and elegance.
Legendary figures such as Clarence Darrow and F. Scott Fitzgerald stayed at the "Pink Palace," as the hotel is known. With a sugar-fine beach, radiant sunsets, a world-class spa and a vibrant food scene, the property delivers something for every type of traveler.
Join Us at IPEC
Past IPEC attendees give the event glowing reviews. "I applaud Northstar for caring so much about independent planners that they designed a meeting just for us," says Tess Vismale, CMP, DES, founder and chief event executioner at iSocialExecution.
Brett Sterenson, president of Hotel Lobbyists, adds that IPEC was well worth his valuable time. "In two short days, IPEC accomplished two very important goals for me: It provided an intimate forum where I could meet with suppliers I've been interested in meeting, and just as importantly, it enabled me to network and share best practices with respected colleagues who do just what I do, all across the country."
Don't miss out on next year's event. Hosted buyers, apply for IPEC and meet us in St. Pete Beach, Fla., this January to connect with top destinations, hotels and resorts, and other key suppliers from across the industry.