Smart Monday, powered by Meeting Professionals International (MPI), the curtain raiser to the IMEX America 2015 show in Las Vegas, opened 12 October at Sands Expo, with educational sessions on a range of key topics delivered by the international meeting industry’s main associations.
Adrienne Tooley, meeting and event manager at Koncept Events, said: “When you’ve been in the industry a few years, you want something new and more advanced. Smart Monday and IMEX offer very high calibre, high-level speakers that are in strong touch with what’s happening in the industry.”
“To have a whole day before the show to come in early and get education here at Smart Monday is great,” added Lanie Collins, marketing association and event manager at Nicola Wealth Management. “Since I‘m the only one in my company who does meetings, it is terrific to be surrounded by and talk to other people who just ‘get it’, and I also get credit for what I am learning towards my CMP.”
The first keynote session was delivered by Lee Papa on the theme of ‘How to live and lead mindfully’.
Smart Monday drew 180 attendees to the Association Focus, presented by the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) and the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA).
A popular networking social was the Site Nite North America event at the new Omnia nightclub, Caesars Palace, with 1,200 buyers and suppliers attending.
As the IMEX America show proper opens 13 October, organisers are reporting more than 80 new exhibition stands this year.
As well as the usual show features, one new element is a Play Room, designed to provide short, hands-on ‘quirkshops’ around creativity.
A new resource on the show floor, TECHnexus, will provide buyers with hands-on experience of the latest technologies and is available every day in the tech area.
The #IMEXpitch Event Technology Startup competition will take place at 4:30 p.m. at the Inspiration Hub. A short list of five companies will pitch their ideas to industry experts.
New for this year is a Meditation Room, this device-free area facilitating regular sessions on yoga, mindfulness and meditation.
IMEX America runs until 15 October at Sands Expo, Las Vegas.