More good news for meetings and events continues to pour out of the Gerald R. Ford International (GFIA) Airport.

The airport reported an almost 6 percent increase in passengers—2,811,622 total in 2017—flying and in out of the Grand Rapids facility. That record established the best year in the airport’s 54-year history, and marked the fifth straight year of record-setting growth.

The airport saw growth in 11 of 12 months during 2017, and experienced 53 months of growth over a 60-month period.

And then, from one meetings-and-events destination to another, Frontier Airlines earlier this year introduced regular direct flights between Orlando, Florida, and Grand Rapids. 

That’s in addition to the $17 million in renovations at the complex, including upgrades in space, retail, food and beverage, restrooms, amenities, and customer service offerings. A new, consolidated passenger security checkpoint centralized and combined security screening to one main checkpoint. Michigan Meetings + Events reported about that activity in the Spring 2018 issue.

Phase two of the project will begin in the fall with improvements at the airline ticket counters, baggage claim area and elsewhere. 

All of this makes it easier and more convenient for meeting and event attendees and planners to get to and from inviting sunset side venues and destinations.

“As we continue to grow in traffic it is imperative that our facilities keep up with our passenger demand. Our passengers keep coming back because we listen to their wants and needs. Our 2020 Vision is to hit the three million passenger mark,” says GFIA President and CEO Jim Gill.

Every year, the North American International Auto Show brings out the best of planners and vendors presenting a flurry of spectacular entertainment events during the show’s two-week run in the Motor City.

This drink, crafted by Eurest Catering in partnership with Bedrock Events, was created for a client who was hosting an Auto Show Charity Preview private reception at The Madison Concourse Hotel in downtown Detroit. Not only are local craft brews still popular for events, but locally distilled spirits are also gaining greater popularity.