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@VisitOrlando went live at Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party on Sept. 23, with our Facebook video post reaching receiving 79K views and 3.7K comments.

Visit Orlando Events

Oct. 6
Business Referral Group

Brick House Tavern + Tap
8440 International Drive
Orlando, FL 32819
407-355-0321 (directions only)
Cost: $25, inclusive
Click here to RSVP.

Oct. 6
Member Orientation

Click here to register.

Member Presents
Members interested in targeting the meetings and convention market can present their products or services during monthly, 30-minute sessions with Destination Services. Click here to schedule a session.

Member-to-Member Offers

Florida Hospitality Industry Association would like to extend a $5 discount on Florida HIA Membership to Visit Orlando members and employees until Nov. 30. Enjoy more than 50 free attractions along with hundreds of exclusive discounts around the state.

palms villas

The Palms Hotel & Villas is offering a special rate for members, relatives and friends of $65 plus tax for a suites-style condominium, including resort fee. They can accommodate up to six people in each suite. This is based on availability until Dec. 2016. For additional information or to book rooms, call 407-396-2229 ext. 2205.

Holiday Inn Club Vacations at Orange Lake Resort is more than a stay, it is a place to play. Enjoy seven swimming pools, including a lazy river-style pool, waterslides, miniature golf courses, arcades, four golf courses, tennis, an 80-acre lake with plenty of watersports, a fun zone, and more. Visit Orlando members save up to 10 percent off your stay. Call 407-477-7029 to reserve.


Annie Russell Theatre at Rollins College is offering Visit Orlando members $10 off a season subscription. For $55, you'll receive one ticket to The Foreigner, Upton Abbey: An Improvised Comedy of English Manors, A Piece of My Heart, and Urinetown, The Musical. Visit rollins.edu/annie for tickets and use code: VISITORLANDO.

Dollar Off Drinks is extending a 20 percent discount on their six-month and one-year memberships to Visit Orlando members. To redeem, use promo code: visitorlando.


Orlando City Soccer Club would like to extend discounted group tickets to Visit Orlando members. They can go to orlandocitysc.com/visitorlando and use the promo code VISITORL to purchase discounted tickets for any of the last five home games this season.


Sammy Duvall Watersports, located behind Disney's Contemporary Resort, is proud to offer Visit Orlando members 10 percent off all water activities (parasailing, personal watercraft, wake boarding, water skiing and more) now through Dec. 31, 2016. To claim this offer, call 407-939-0754 or email reservations@sammyduvall.com, and mention the offer code "visitorlando10" when booking.

Industry Events

I-Drive 360

Merlin Entertainments' Attractions at I-Drive 360 have announced special discounts for police officers, firefighters and emergency medical services (EMS) personnel working in the United States. For the entire month of September, first responders will receive free admission to The Coca-Cola Orlando Eye, SEA LIFE Orlando Aquarium and Madame Tussauds Orlando. Four additional guests can receive a 25 percent discount as well. Active, former and retired personnel with identification are also eligible. The offer is valid through Sept. 30. For more information, call 866-228-6438.

Madame Orlando

The International Drive tourism community continues its support of victims of the Pulse tragedy through a unique fundraising event, Madame Orlando, at Madame Tussauds Orlando in the I-Drive 360 complex on Sept. 30, 2016. Attendees are encouraged to come as their favorite celebrity or in cocktail attire. Sponsored by Merlin Entertainment, I-Drive 360, about global about local, Blu Sky Events, and Paramount Fine Foods, the event will feature live music, cocktails and hors d'oeuvres. Television personality Jaymes Vaughan will co-host the evening. Proceeds from the event will benefit Pulse victims via the One Pulse Foundation. Tickets are $75 if purchased in advance online or $85 at the door.


HSMAI Central Florida is hosting The 11th Annual Chinese Auction on Friday, Oct. 7, 2016, at The Wyndham Lake Buena Vista Resort. The fundraiser benefits Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children and Arnie's March to Cure Cancer. To register and for more information on sponsorships and donations, click here.

Itta Bena Restaurant at Pointe Orlando is offering Visit Orlando members who book their holiday party with the restaurant by Oct. 15, 2016, complimentary passed appetizers, complimentary dessert bar or Red Carpet Entrance & Champagne Toast. *Restrictions apply.  For more information or contact Robin Katz at 407-248-1194 or rkatz@ittabena.com.

Lake Buena Vista Factory Stores is having their 20th Anniversary Red Carpet Event on Thursday, Oct. 20, from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. To RSVP, call 407.238.9301 ext. 104 or go online. Industry partners only.

La Nouba by Cirque du Soleil is offering Florida's hospitality employees, and as many as five guests per employee, up to 36 percent in savings on tickets for Thursday-night shows from Oct. 4 to Dec. 16. Discounted ticket prices start at $48 and are available for purchase now at www.lanouba.com. Hospitality employee ID or paystub required.

Community Events

Through Oct. 30
The DOCUMERICA Photography Project
Orange County Regional History Center

Oct. 7-9
3-Day Winter Garden Music Fest on Plant Street
Historic Downtown Winter Garden

Oct. 8-9
43rd Annual Winter Park Autumn Art Festival
Central Park, Downtown Winter Park

Oct. 9
Feria de Tapa Toro: A Spain-Inspired Fair
Tapa Toro Tapas Bar & Paella Pit

Through Oct. 9
West Side Story
Orlando Shakespeare Theater, Margeson Theater

Oct. 9-10
Stars & Pars Gala Benefiting Give Kids The World Village
Tranquilo Golf Club, Lake Buena Vista

Oct. 13
3rd Annual Fall For Pink Fashion Show
Orlando Vineland Premium Outlets

Oct. 15
Amour: Mario Frangoulis, George Perris, Deborah Myers and the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra
Dr. Phillips Center for Performing Arts

Oct. 15
Experience an Explosion of Creativity: The Creative City Project
Downtown Orlando

Oct. 19-23
The Annual Orlando Film Festival
Plaza Cinema Cafe

Oct. 20-30
The New Mel Brooks Musical: Young Frankenstein
University of Central Florida Main Stage

Oct. 28-29
The Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic Annual Event
The Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort

Oct. 29
"Dress As Your Hero" Fundraiser Benefitting Local Scouting Programs & Youth of Military Families Overseas
T-Rex Café at Disney Springs

Oct. 29
The Pineapple Ball
UCF Rosen College of Hospitality Management

Nov. 5
Black Tie on the Wildside Presents: The Grand Carnival Event
Central Florida Zoo

Through Nov. 7
Charity Raffle Benefiting the OneOrlando Fund through Starfish Marketing
The Whiskey @ The Bay Hill Fountains

Nov. 16
Go-Kart Racing Tournament Benefitting the Simon Youth Foundation
I-Drive NASCAR Indoor Kart Racing

Nov. 18-19
Voices of Light presented by Bach Festival Choir and Orchestra, and GladdeningLight
Knowles Memorial Chapel at Rollins College, Winter Park

Through Nov. 27
The Missing Matisse: Pierre Henri Matisse
Albin Polasek Museum & Sculpture Gardens

Connect With Visit Orlando

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Be sure to follow @VisitOrlando on Instagram and Twitter, fan us at facebook.com/VisitOrlando or watch YouTube.com/VisitOrlando for more insider information about the world's most famous destination!

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President & CEO's Message

Sept. 30, 2016

Halloween Kicks Off the Season for Events

George Aguel From adult-size scares to kid-friendly frights, Orlando is now the "Halloween Capital of the World" with more than 130 events spread out over a two-month celebration. There are haunted houses with cinematic-worthy effects and ghoulish parties, and not so scary ones, for kids of all ages. In fact, we are planning to host one of the nation's largest horror conventions, Spooky Empire. All in all, Orlando has created a Halloween experience with a scale and sophistication like nowhere else - giving travelers every reason to come and making what used to be child's play a serious destination draw.
We know that visitors come to enjoy our world-class theme parks and attractions, but fall kicks off a season where guests also experience more events than at any other time of the year. It all begins with Halloween where zombie walks and spooky forests, trick or treating and even a fright-filled ballet make the Orlando experience even bigger and better. This is also the time of year where we welcome many world-class food festivals - which lead up to Orlando's premier holiday events.
While many destinations have settled into off-peak periods, our stellar seasonal events provide travelers with an even greater incentive to visit and explore all that is new. Social media channels, blogs and publicity efforts showcase the excitement and bring the story to life. So whether it's the highest percentage of adults-only travelers that we will see all year or families who are looking to treat the kids to a Halloween like no other, there are plenty of reasons we can expect this fall season to be nothing short of spectacular.

-George Aguel

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From the Research & Insights Desk of Visit Orlando

Consumer Confidence Hits Post-Recession High

The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index reached 104.1 in September, up 2.3 percent from August and 1.5 percent higher than September 2015. The index is now at its highest level since August 2007. Consumers feel more positively about current economic conditions and are slightly more optimistic about the future. The Present Situation Index rose from 125.3 to 128.5, while the Expectations Index improved from 86.1 last month to 87.8.



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Visit Orlando Updates

Gay Travel Guide

New Edition of Gay Travel Guide Released

Visit Orlando has recently released its latest edition of the Orlando Gay Travel Guide that compiles the best of Orlando's events, attractions, dining and more, for LGBTQ visitors. The new guide is just in time for the fall travel season - and the region's popular annual Come Out With Pride celebration on Oct. 2-8. Now in its third year of production, a digital version is available online and printed in-market copies can be obtained at the Visit Orlando Official Visitor Center or mailed upon request.

Maxines on Shine

Magical Dining: Only a Couple Days Left to Enjoy

This is the last weekend of Visit Orlando's Magical Dining Month sponsored by American Express. The program's 11th season will end on Sunday, Oct. 2. Diners can enjoy three courses for $33 while at the same time contributing to a worthy cause - $1 from each meal will go to The Russell Home for Atypical Children. Visit OrlandoMagicalDining.com to view participating restaurant menus and to make online reservations. Pictured: MDM Menus, such as Maxine's on Shine's, can be enjoyed even more with suggested wine pairings.


Orlando Showcased in India Market

Visit Orlando joined representatives from 36 U.S. destinations and travel suppliers during the annual Brand USA India sales mission Sept.16-21. The travel trade events held in Mumbai, Bengaluru and Delhi included appointment sessions and networking events. The team conducted sales calls and participated in a Visit Florida/Emirates event in Mumbai targeting the meetings and conventions market, as well as a Visit Florida VIP trade event in Bengaluru. In total, the team reached more than 300 travel trade clients during the week-long showcase promoting travel to the United States. In 2015, more than 1.1 million Indians visited the United States, ranking 11th in tourism arrivals to the our country, and marking an increase of 17 percent over 2014.

Photo caption: Joseph Fernandes, representing Visit Orlando, participates in business session in Bengaluru.


VIP Experience Featured in TravelMall

Mexico's TravelMall (circ. 264,000), a bi-weekly trade magazine that is distributed in top Mexico City neighborhoods, published a two-page article about Orlando as an exclusive destination for tourists searching for luxury and stylish experiences. The "Orlando VIP" story highlighted luxury accommodations at the Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney Resort, VIP tours at the theme parks, the high-end culinary scene at Disney Springs, and personal shopper experiences at The Mall at Millenia.


Visit Orlando Hosts Travel Impressions Fam

Visit Orlando hosted the Travel Impression familiarization tour from Mexico Sept. 20-27. This group of 22 travel agents who cater to high-end clientele, experienced new attractions in the destination along with upscale hotel site inspections and a fashion show at Bloomingdale's hosted by The Mall at Millenia. The tour was conducted in cooperation with Disney Destinations, I-Drive 360, SeaWorld Orlando, Universal Orlando Resort, Waldorf Astoria Orlando, and receptive tour operator HIGHSTAR.


Super Fam a "Trip of a Lifetime"

Fifty U.K. travel agents learned about Orlando's most popular theme parks and newest attractions, world-class shopping options and dining experiences during the Visit Orlando Super Fam held Sept.19-26. This "Fam Trip of a Lifetime" was sponsored by Visit Orlando and members Merlin Entertainments, SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment, Universal Orlando Resort and Walt Disney World Resort.

Norwegian FAM

Norwegian Air Shuttle Fam

During the Visit Orlando Norwegian Air Shuttle familiarization tour Sept. 19-22, travel agents from Denmark and Sweden enjoyed accommodations at Loews Sapphire Falls Resort, visited SeaWorld Orlando and Universal Orlando Resort, and enjoyed a Visit Orlando-hosted dinner at Cuba Libre Restaurant and Rum Bar at Pointe Orlando.


NY Live

NBC Morning Shows Promote Destination

All this week, Orlando will be showcased on NBC's New York Live morning show and NBC morning shows in both Miami and Chicago. Earlier this month, Visit Orlando hosted a NBC New York crew to create a series of segments featuring the breadth and depth of the destination. Hosted by popular TV host and lifestyle expert Ereka Vetrini, segments include "What's New" (including the Visit Orlando app), "Luxury in Orlando," "Outdoor Adventures" and "Orlando's Dining Scene".


STV Channel Sponsorship Launches in Scotland

As part of the U.K. fall campaign, Visit Orlando has launched an STV Channel Sponsorship that will generate more than 20 million impressions through Nov. 30. Ten-second video ads will appear during peak programming most viewed by women with children. Scotland is a key region for taking theme park vacations.


ConferenceDirect Meets in Orlando

Visit Orlando co-hosted the Central Florida ConferenceDirect regional meeting last week at the Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress. Orlando is ConferenceDirect's No. 1 booked destination for meetings and events. The associates have also voted Visit Orlando the No. 1 Convention and Visitors Bureau in the nation three years in a row. The two-day program included a "What's New in Orlando" presentation.

Pictured, left to right, are: Bob Dees, ConferenceDirect; and Ken Barnett, Visit Orlando.


Key Networking at IAEE Midwest's Annual Meeting

Last week, Visit Orlando attended International Association of Exhibitions and Event's (IAEE) Midwestern Chapter's annual meeting held in downtown Chicago. The team had an opportunity to network with hospitality leaders key to bringing city-wide meetings to Orlando. IAEE represents more than 8,500 individuals who conduct and support tradeshow exhibitions around the world. The Midwest Chapter is one of the largest, most active chapters in the country.

Pictured, from left, are: Benjamin Rabe, Smith Bucklin; Barbara Balaguras, Visit Orlando; Hayat Pronovost, Visit Orlando; Cassie Palacios, Smith Bucklin; and Sarah Madonia, Smith Bucklin.


Visit Orlando Participates on AMA Panel

Visit Orlando's Chief Marketing Officer Danielle Hollander spoke to aspiring young professionals at the American Marketing Association's "Marketing Power Panel" held on Sept. 22. Moderated by Carol Cox, creator of Speaking Your Brand, the panel covered a range of topics from starting an agency to career advancement, as well as strategy tips and competitive trends.

Pictured, from left, are panelists: Sasha Hausman, Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida; Diana Bolivar, Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Metro Orlando; Danielle Hollander, Visit Orlando; Shannon Everhart, Gravitational Marketing; and Jennifer Weldon, Fat Free Media, Inc.

Gold 100

2016 Gold 100 Awards & Summit

Staff from Visit Orlando and the Orange County Convention Center attended Trade Show Executive's 2016 Gold 100 Awards & Summit on Sept. 21- 23 in Carlsbad, California. Not only does the event salute the executives who have guided their shows into the elite ranking of the 100 largest shows in the nation, but it also offers state-of-the industry discussions, educational sessions and networking opportunities.

Pictured, from left, are: Rodney Gutierrez, Orange County Convention Center; Howard Britt, Premiere Show Group; Michael Grant, Reed Expositions; and Fred Shea, Visit Orlando.


Travel Trade Updated at Discover America Sweden

On Sept. 21, Visit Orlando participated in a Discover America Sweden event in Malmö for approximately 80 travel agents. Malmö is of strategic importance due to its close proximity to Copenhagen Airport, where Norwegian Air Shuttle has direct service to Orlando. During the evening, attendees learned about the latest news in Orlando and a Visit Orlando stay was one of the main prizes.

PR Team Attends Discover America Canada

From Sept 26-27, Visit Orlando's Public Relations team attended the Discover America Canada event in Toronto and conducted desk-side media appointments. The more than 20 appointments have the potential reach of more than 37 million impressions.

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News About Orlando


This Week at the Convention Center

Group Meeting Start End Estimated Attendees Estimated Economic Impact
American Nurses Credentialing Center, Inc. ANCC Magnet Conference Oct. 5 Oct. 7 9,500 $15,760,000
Florida School Nutrition Association, Inc. FSNA Equipment & Food Expo Oct. 7 Oct. 8 1,500 $2,955,000
Jeunesse, LLC Jeunesse Expo 2016 Oct. 7 Oct. 9 20,000 $39,400,000


Annual Pride Week Begins Sunday

Come Out With Pride presented by Orlando City Soccer Club will be held Oct. 2-8. In its 12th year, the annual event is a celebration of local LGBTQ+ culture with spectacular parties, fireworks and a signature parade. Photo Courtesy of Come Out With Pride

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Ted Comes to SEA LIFE

SEA LIFE Orlando Aquarium welcomed Ted, a rescued loggerhead sea turtle acquired by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, to his new home this week. Ted received his name after being one of the first turtles used to test at-sea certification trials for Turtle Excluder Devices (TEDs) in scallop/whelk trawl fisheries.

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16 Grown-Up Tastes at Epcot Food & Wine Fest

To navigate this epic food festival featuring more than 32 new menu items and 49 new cocktails, beers, wines and ciders, Visit Orlando's foodie fans have selected 16 grown-up bites and sips perfect for adults.

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"Dancing With the Stars" to Feature Cirque

Cirque du Soleil has announced that ABC's Dancing With the Stars will air a Cirque du Soleil-themed episode Oct. 3 that features all the Cirque's acts, including La Nouba's new Aerial Bamboo. It airs locally on WFTV at 8 p.m.

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Kraken VR & More Part of SeaWorld 2017 Lineup

On Tuesday, SeaWorld Orlando announced its lineup of new attractions, shows and events for 2017, including its Kraken Virtual Reality (VR) Roller Coaster, a more interactive Dolphin Nursery, debut of after-dark Electric Ocean event, and more.

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2016's Halloween Lineup Is Frightfully Delightful

Orlando Ballet's performance of Michael Pink's world-renowned classic horror tale, Dracula, at the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts Oct. 28-30, is just one of the 130-plus Halloween event nights across the "Halloween Capital of the World" in which all can delight. Photo: Michael Cairns

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JetBlue Launches Nonstop Coast-to-Coast Service

JetBlue announced this week that it will launch new daily nonstop service between Orlando International Airport (MCO) and Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) beginning Jan. 5, 2017.

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TripAdvisor Blog: Disney for Autumn Getaway

TripAdvisor's recent "Goodbye Summer, Hello Autumn: Book a Trip to These Enchanting Places" blog lists Disney World among the places to consider for a trip this autumn.

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Industry News


China's Largest Online Agency Cites Orlando

China's online travel agency CTrip announced their latest statistics regarding "Destinations with Fastest-Growing Air Ticket Orders," ranking Orlando No. 1 with a 700 percent year-over-year growth for orders leading up to the Golden Week holiday, Oct. 1-7. The holiday period is the second-most popular long-haul vacation holiday after the Chinese New Year holiday. CTrip currently features 276 different tour packages and products for Orlando. CTrip has grown to be the largest online travel agency in China and third globally behind Priceline and Expedia since it was founded in 1999.

Plans to Open Lola App to Travel Agents

Paul English, the co-founder of Kayak, hopes to open up his Lola app to travel agents "around the world" as the company prepares to take the business into its next phase of development. The app provides an on-demand travel service to consumers by connecting them to a team of travel agents.

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AA Biz Travelers Can Book Free Preferred Seats

American Airlines launched a website on Monday giving corporate travelers access to economy cabin Preferred Seats at no charge regardless of status.

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International Travel Up Worldwide

International tourist arrivals worldwide grew by 4 percent between January and June 2016 compared to the same period last year. Destinations worldwide received 561 million international tourists (overnight visitors), 21 million more than in 2015, according to the latest UNWTO World Tourism Barometer. In the Americas, international arrivals increased by 4%,

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Best Western's SureStay for Independent Hotels

Best Western Hotels & Resorts has launched a service for independent hotels called SureStay. Best Western will provide hotels with distribution services, desktop and mobile websites, and sales coaching, while giving hotel owners access to Best Western's OTA commission rates.

CDC Zika Information

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), its most current data available (Sept. 28, 2016) indicate that 59 locally acquired cases have been reported in the United States, while 3,565 travel-associated cases have been reported. For the most current information about the Zika virus, visit the CDC's Zika page.

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ARDA Bags BB&T British Airways Clear Channel Outdoor
Darden Florida Distributing Company Florida Hospital The Florida Mall Lufthansa
The Mall at Millenia Orlando Economic Development Commission Orlando Health Orlando International Airport Orlando Magic
Orlando Premium Outlets OUC Smart City Tupperware Brands
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