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Reunion workshop offers planners guidance

6/5/2013, 2:11 p.m.

The Newport News Tourism and Development Office hosted a Reunion-Planning Workshop at the Downing-Gross Cultural Arts Center that was designed to give information and resources to members of the community tasked with the job of planning a reunion of all sorts for the upcoming summer season.

Edith Wagner, editor and publisher of Reunions magazine and reunionsmag.com, was the featured speaker. Offering tips, ideas, and advice for a successful reunion of any type and size, Wagner showed why her magazine is such a success, having 15,000 subscribers.

A few workshop attendees expressed concern about planning a memorable reunion in the current state of the economy. Wagner essentially encouraged them to press on by saying, “Reunions are amazingly resilient and strong in an economy that is unkind to everyone.”

Also there to speak were Jim Sample with the Tidewater Genealogical Society, and Maureen Coon, president of the Newport News Hospitality Association. Sample encouraged interest in genealogical research and family history, and Coon discussed the grueling hotel selection process and contract negotiating.

Also included in the workshop’s festivities was a vendor fair. The workshop’s attendees were allowed to network with each other and visit the various vendor booths to talk to representatives from city attractions, restaurants, hotels, and other partners in the hospitality industry.