Courier October Courier - Page 17

NTA WORKING FOR YOU Something old, new, borrowed and blue Recently engaged Contact ’18 chair shares her passion for Charleston EARLIER THIS YEAR, Jennifer Aiken, des- tination services manager for Explore Charleston, was appointed chair of Contact ’18. But being named the face of NTA’s buyer retreat in South Carolina this April isn’t the only cool thing happening for her—she recently became engaged. Courier met with Aiken and asked her to share insights on our 2018 host city using the traditional advice for what a bride should wear on her wedding day: something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue. The Battery at Charleston Harbor USS Yorktown Something old: In Charleston, everything from the cobblestones to the iron gates has a story to tell. We were one of the first American colonies, founded in 1670. Be sure to tour Magnolia Plantation, which is the oldest plantation site on the Ashley River, and climb aboard the World War II aircraft carrier USS Yorktown. You also can visit the Charleston Tea Plantation, a true working tea farm that’s a living piece of American history. Something new: At the South Carolina Aquarium, overlooking the Charleston Harbor, you can connect with more than 5,000 amazing animals and learn how to play a part in protecting them. And while there, come face-to-face with injured sea turtles undergoing rehabilitation at the aquarium’s newest addition, Zucker Family Sea Turtle Recovery. You can follow the turtles’ journeys from rescue to rehab to release. Something borrowed: In the tradition of the cities that have played host to Contact, we’re looking forward to welcoming everyone to the Charleston area with sincere hospitality. I’ve been able to attend Contact as a sponsor, and I know the level of planning that goes into hosting an event such as this. We’ll do all we can to make Contact ’18 fun and memorable, just like the gracious NTA destinations that came before us. Something blue: Set sail aboard the Carolina Queen with Charleston Harbor Tours on its Blues & BBQ harbor cruise. You’ll enjoy a beautiful sunset, delicious food and fun music, while taking in close-up views of Charleston’s most famous and charming sights. Blues & BBQ runs through October. South Carolina Aquarium Magnolia Plantation Contact at a Glance What: Contact ’18 When: April 18–21 Where: Embassy Suites by Hilton Charleston Airport Hotel & Convention Center 5055 International Blvd., North Charleston, SC 29418 Web: NTAonline.com/contact; #NTAcontact Who: NTA tour operators and travel planners. Suppliers and DMOs can attend through sponsorship. Reach Laura Scott at sponsor@ntastaff.com or +1.859.264.6577 to get your spot. Why: Contact’s practical, hands-on education encompasses the topics and issues you need to tackle to move your business forward. Its intimate setting will make it easy to connect, create and collaborate in one of America’s most charming, historical cities. Registration: Opens Oct. 31 at NTAonline.com/contact Early-bird rates available through Jan. 12 Make contact with NTA buyers Contact is a buyer-exclusive retreat, but it’s also open to tour suppliers and DMOs who sponsor at the event. To connect with nearly 100 key decision-makers from April 18 to 21, join us in Charleston for four days of casual networking, education and good times. Suppliers, DMOs and associates, reach out to your account executive at advertising@ntastaff.com and get on board. Or you can contact Laura Scott at sponsor@ ntastaff.com or +1.859.264.6577. We’ll see y’all in Charleston! NTAonline.com 15