Meet Mindy Lallier, Director of Sales and Services with Overland Park CVB. She is originally from up-state New York where, more than twenty plus years ago, she started her career in hospitality at the Hotel Thayer on West Point’s Prestigious Military Academy. Her family moved to the Midwest in 1995, where she served as Director of Sales and Catering for a local hotel management company for eight years. Mindy joined the team at the Overland Park CVB in January of 2003 as a senior sales manager and was promoted to Director of Sales and Services in January 2016. She is married to a wonderful guy named Todd and they have two great girls, Emily and Makayla, both in college right now. They are a pet family with three dogs, Josie, Earl and Barbie. Todd and Mindy love live music and you will find them most weekends hanging with the best friends in the world listening to some great tunes.
In Overland Park, you’ll find the luxury of big city amenities blended with suburban hospitality. Overland Park, located just south of downtown Kansas City, features recently renovated space that is open, airy and bright for your meeting participants. FREE parking and convenient highway access for your attendees is a bonus. The Convention Center and adjoining Sheraton Hotel offer a seamless transition from “sleep” to “meet” with over 120,000 square feet of meeting space and customizable entertainment experiences. Planners and attendees consistently praise the quality of events in Overland Park.
Three key trends we have noticed taking hold in the meetings market are F&B costs, customization and e-lead services.
F&B Costs: Being in a seller’s market, we are finding most hotels are now focusing on the overall “package” of a client’s RFP. It is not just about room rates any longer. Food and beverage contribution is a large component of the pricing structure for events. When working with planners, Visit Overland Park’s team gathers past F&B history to supply to our partners and educates the planners on how these costs affect the overall pricing in proposals. We act as our client’s advocate to get the best overall package for the planner as possible. Our main goal is to put a competitive package together so we have the best chance of winning the business for Overland Park.
Customization: Convention services from a DMO is not a new thought. However, planners needs are becoming more diversified and they are already somewhat educated on what they want from a destination before they contract. With that said, Overland Park offers customized event services to assist the planner as they prepare for events. Our destination specialists are the liaison, connecting planners to everything our metro area has to offer to create exceptional and memorable events.
e-Lead Services: Most Planners have begun using e-lead services to distribute RFPs. Overland Park makes it a priority to manage these leads in the same personalized and relationship building ways we work with direct leads. Quick response from our team is a must. We pull together all partner proposals into one organized and well planned proposal to create a vision of our destination for the event. Follow-up is key to making planners utilizing these technology services feel the same hospitality they would receive in working directly with our team.
Overland Park has had some exciting new entertainment venues open in the past year. Topgolf, a three-tiered driving range, offers unique target practice games for a fun and competitive event for golfers of all abilities. At iFLY Indoor Skydiving, you’re in for an adrenaline rush. After a brief introductory training course, visitors enter the wind tunnel and feel the sensation of skydiving – in a safe, indoor space. In 2017, Prairiefire Entertainment District will begin phase two – offering more unique dining, shopping and a large outdoor space for concerts and special events. This destination is anchored by the Museum at Prairiefire, a satellite location of New York’s American Museum of Natural History.