Mark Calitri reports: Owensboro Kentucky officials confident 2020 will bring strong local economy,
The ’20s in Owensboro are expected to roar, local officials say.
Developer Jack Wells, the incoming board chair of the Greater Owensboro Chamber of Commerce, is so confident in a strong local economy in 2020 that he joined with several other local investors in December to buy Towne Square Mall for $5.15 million with plans to redevelop it.
“I think the economy in our region is very strong,” Wells said recently. “I don’t see that changing in 2020. We will have a recession at some point, but I don’t think it will be in 2020. We have a pretty diverse economy here. We typically buck the highs and lows in the economy.”
Laura Alexander, general manager of both the Owensboro Convention Center and the Sportscenter, said, “I suspect we will end 2020 with more conventions than we had in 2019.”
There were 12 conventions last year.
Alexander said 11 have already been confirmed for 2020 and another four are studying the convention center’s proposals.
“2020 is going to be an exciting year for Owensboro and Daviess County,” said Mark Calitri, president of the Owensboro-Daviess County Convention & Visitors Bureau. “The CVB is proactively selling Owensboro and encouraging meeting and travel planners to look at the unique experiences we have.”
He said, “The Owensboro Convention Center and the CVB have increased our intensity in pursuing new events that not only fill the center but create an economic windfall for local restaurants, gas stations and hotels. One new conference is the Kentucky Association for Economic Development in May. This conference will bring economic development professionals from across the state and allow us the opportunity to showcase Owensboro and Daviess County.”
Calitri said the CVB is working with the convention center to upgrade the OMG!con gathering in June — one of the city’s largest conventions — “and improve the marketing, all with the goal of increasing this event’s economic impact. It’s run by a group of volunteers. We’re trying to find a local event manager to work with them.”
‘Cool national event’
And, he said, “We also are close to announcing a cool national event leading up to ROMP.”
The CVB is also working to brand Owensboro as both “Kentucky’s Music City” and “the cultural and culinary leader in Western Kentucky.”
Visit Owensboro is the official destination marketing organization for Owensboro and Daviess County Kentucky. www.visitowensboro.com Mark Calitri serves as President/CEO.
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