Cincinnati lands major 2011 convention

According to the Cincinnati USA Convention & Visitors Bureau, Cincinnati has landed another major convention as the Prince Hall Shriners have selected Cincinnati for their 2011 Imperial Session. The African-American fraternal organization does a considerable amount of work raising money for their three primary programs: National Diabetes Initiative, Shriners as Mentors, and Student Aid.

The group will reportedly bring more than 25,000 attendees, utilize more than 17,000 hotel room nights, and pump more than $5 million into the local economy during their visit. Cincinnati reportedly had been working on landing this convention for more than five years and beat out Phoenix to seal the deal. The Prince Hall Shriners last held their annual event in Cincinnati in 1961

The announcement continues the positive trend major ethnic organizations selecting Cincinnati as the host city for their annual conventions. In 2008, The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) selected Cincinnati and brought significant national attention to the city that included a visit from then presidential candidate Barack Obama and several other notable African-American leaders. Shortly after the NAACP convention closed, the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) announced that it too would be bringing its annual convention to Cincinnati in 2011. Other events celebrating Cincinnati’s rich cultural diversity lately have included the National Hispanic MBAs in 2006, the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives in 2006, the Gospel Music Workshop of America in 2009, the recently announced 2013 National Fraternal Order of Police National Conference, and the 2010 annual meeting of the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers.

By Randy A. Simes

Randy is an award-winning urban planner who founded UrbanCincy in May 2007. He grew up on Cincinnati’s west side in Covedale, and graduated from the University of Cincinnati’s nationally acclaimed School of Planning in June 2009. In addition to maintaining ownership and serving as the managing editor for UrbanCincy, Randy has worked professionally as a planning consultant throughout the United States, Korea and the Middle East. After brief stints in Atlanta and Chicago, he currently lives in the Daechi neighborhood of Seoul’s Gangnam district.