Hospitality MN's Expo Delivers the Goods
Attendees paid a registration fee this year for the first time in recent memory, but that didn't keep the crowd down.
Courtesy of Hospitality MN
Hospitality MN’s Conference and Expo took over St. Paul’s RiverCentre in late September for a day of high-power keynote speeches, informative panel discussions on trending topics and a chance to meet with vendors and try new product combinations.
More than 880 people attended the annual event, according to Hospitality MN, and 131 exhibitors, some with multiple booths, were on hand to answer questions and showcase their products and services.
On the educational side, 36 industry-specific speakers shared their knowledge in both break-out sessions and learning hubs.
David Scott Peters and Chad Houser were the two keynoters for the event. Houser, a chef and philanthropist, is the founder of Café Momentum, which helps train and teach life skills to at-risk youth in Dallas. Peters, who closed out the show with his presentation, left attendees with useful tips on how to cut costs and increase profits. A subject every restaurateur can't hear enough on.
New this year was the Mixology Lounge, which proved to be a popular addition. No surprise here.
The layout for booths was also user-friendly, with wide aisles and room for attendees to gather around to see the latest offerings from vendors.
For the first time in recent memory, there was a charge to attend—$49 for members and $79 for nonmembers—but it included access to the exhibit hall, all the sessions and a "free" lunch. The fee, Rammer said in her pre-event information, was to offset the cost of bringing "the greatest value to attendees."