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Louisville selected to host national travel and tourism show

American Bus Association’s Marketplace will be at Kentucky International Convention Center in 2016

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Oct. 2, 2012) — The American Bus Association (ABA) has selected Louisville to host the ABA’s 2016 Marketplace, Jan. 9-12, 2016, at the Kentucky International Convention Center downtown.

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The ABA’s Marketplace in 2016 is the organization’s 38th annual gathering, but it marks the first time Louisville has hosted this prestigious event.

“The American Bus Association is always thrilled when we can bring new cities into the ABA family,” said ABA President and CEO Peter J. Pantuso, CTIS.  “Louisville was selected after an exhaustive bid process where several cities submitted proposals to host the ABA’s Marketplace. Louisville has so many great places to see including the Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory, the Kentucky Science Center, the Muhammad Ali Center and of course the Kentucky Derby Museum and historic Churchill Downs Racetrack.”

More than 3,000 attendees are estimated to attend the 2016 Marketplace. Marketplace is the show where business gets done, generating in 2012 nearly $80 million dollars for the delegates, suppliers and host city. Officials estimate the ABA’s Marketplace will bring an immediate, direct economic impact of $4.4 million dollars by hosting the conference, but as has been the case with other Marketplace cities, there is the potential for much more future business after showcasing the city to tour operators.

“Louisville already has a lot of options for tour operators and we continue to see tremendous growth,” said Jim Wood, president and CEO of the Louisville Convention & Visitors Bureau. “By 2016, the ABA can expect to see an expanded bourbon experience with new distilleries along Main Street in addition to the attractions and restaurants that draw visitors to Louisville every year.”

There are more than 3,800 first-class hotel rooms within a short distance of the Kentucky International Convention Center and 2,300 of those are connected to the facility by an enclosed walking bridge.

The ABA’s 2013 Marketplace is scheduled for Jan. 5-9 in Charlotte, N.C. In 2014, Nashville, Tenn., will host ABA’s Marketplace in downtown Nashville at the new Music City Center. The ABA’s 2015 Marketplace will be held in St. Louis, Mo., at the America’s Center Convention Complex.

ABA represents approximately 1,000 motorcoach and tour companies in the United States and Canada. Its members operate charter, tour, regular route, airport express, special operations and contract services (commuter, school, transit). Another 2,800 member organizations represent the travel and tourism industry and suppliers of bus products and services who work in partnership with the North American motorcoach industry.