Showing posts from December, 2020

Q & A With Visit Phoenix

  As the preferred housing provider for Visit Phoenix , Connections Housing recently had the chance to catch up with Lorne Edwards, Senior Vice President of Convention Sales and Services.   Visit Phoenix is the  non-profit organization that promotes the Greater Phoenix community to a global audience of travelers and books conventions into the Phoenix Convention Center and area hotels and resorts.   In this Q & A, Lorne shares the latest updates on new programs, safety protocols and other innovations from hotels, indoor and outdoor venues throughout the Greater Phoenix area. Q: In light of Covid-19, what new initiatives and/or programs have you launched to help travel pros feel comfortable booking their events in the Greater Phoenix Area? A: The Phoenix Convention Center, along with our greater community of hotel and hospitality partners, have implemented several key initiatives that we feel are key to inspiring confidence in planners considering Phoenix. For example, the Pho

The Mountains Were Calling. Clarion Events Answered With Successful Live Event

 Q & A with Lisa Berry, Vice President, Clarion Events Gift & Souvenir Portfolio The Clarion Events Gift & Souvenir Portfolio successfully returned to face-to-face events last month w ith the 55th annual Smoky Mountain Gift Show – known as the nation’s oldest and most respected event for the resort, gift and souvenir industry.    We had the chance to talk with Lisa Berry, vice president for the Clarion Events Gift & Souvenir Portfolio, about the team’s commitment to creating a safe environment for the show’s buyers and exhibitors, as well as key takeaways and advice for planners looking ahead to their first live events.  (Pictured:  Lisa Berry (center right) and Christina Bell (center left), Smoky Mountain Gift Show Director, flanked by JK2 Apparel exhibitors.)  Many 2020 trade shows cancelled or pivoted to virtual formats for 2020. What led to Clarion’s decision to move forward with the live edition of the Smoky Mountain Gift Show? We were really driven by cust

From Our Table To Yours | Festive Holiday Recipes

 Between all the Zoom and Microsoft Teams meetings,  strategy sessions and conference calls while we've all been working from home, we've also been perfecting our holiday recipes.  We've got some fun, easy (and not so easy!) and festive ones we'd like to share with you: Click on any image to download the complete recipe! Larry Peterson, Vice President of National Accounts, has a great libation to liven up any holiday gathering with this wonderful Old Fashioned Swedish Glogg recipe.  Jon Mitchell, Vice President of National Accounts, recommends this amazing Kabocha Squash Pie With Spiced Crust .  It won a winter squash recipe blind taste test (the pumpkin is part of the squash family) and promises to win over your holiday guests, too!  Courtnie Hicks, Director of Account Management, has shared a few recipes, including this savory Italian Briolata .   Not the easiest of the recipes she shared, but it's a favorite of her Italian family! For an easy appetizer, Courtnie

Celebrating The Other Members of Our Pack

 Where would we be without our animal companions! Whether returning to a room after a quick trip to the kitchen or returning home from a long day away, they're always happy to see us!  Bottom line, our pets just make everything better.   So we wanted to take a moment to introduce you to some of our fabulous furry friends: Robert Colvin, Chief Operating Officer, and Chip Courtnie Hicks, Director of Account Management, and Sheba, a Great Dane Pitbull mix; Harlow, a Shih Tzu Terrier; and Bella, a Chiweenie    Larry Peterson, Vice President of National Accounts, with Sally the super dog, Luke and Kate   Truman, named for Harry S. Truman, and pal to Jon Mitchell, Vice President of National Accounts  Tom Bell, Vice President of Sports Programs, sent this great shot of (top to bottom)  Maggie, Zeke and Benny    A very special picture.  Jeff Moore (right)  a long-time member of our Connections Family, passed away in April of 2020.  Shown here with husband Richard and their 2 dogs, Zoey and

Easy Hacks To Stop Hackers

By Stephanie Gasca, IT Manager and Zac Kellogg, IT Specialist, Connections Housing Cybercriminals are getting craftier every day.   Here are some quick and easy “hacks” to stop scammers from getting access to your devices and personal information. Be Cautious of Unknown Networks When traveling or in public, it might seem like a convenient option to leave your WiFi turned on so your device will connect to known networks. Make sure that any networks you connect to are secured and that your phone or laptop does not auto-connect to unknown networks. It is very easy for even a novice cybercriminal to gain personal information, including usernames, passwords, and any uploaded or downloaded data. NEVER connect a work computer to ANY public networks (including hotels and airplanes) without your IT team knowing first. Be On The Lookout for Phishing Phishing -- the fraudulent practice of sending emails that appear to be from reputable companies as a way to trick individuals into revealin