2018 Planning Meeting Report

Lancaster Marriot at Penn Square,
Lancaster, PA


This report contains photos from a famous location called Longwood Gardens. I am recommending this place as a day trip during the convention. Longwood Gardens is an American botanical garden. It consists of over 1,077 acres of gardens, woodlands, and meadows in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania, in the Brandywine Creek Valley. It is the former estate of Pierre Dupont. In addition to the gardens they have a magnificently restored pipe organ that has been automated and it provides brief performances several times a day. This pipe organ is so large that it takes up the entire long wall of the ballroom and you can walk inside it.  They just completed a multi-million dollar restoration of the main water fountain. Search YouTube for: “Flowing Water Documentary Trailer”. Go to: https://longwoodgardens.org/ for a look. It is worth the 55-minute trip from the hotel.


The landmark hotel has remarkable architecture and historic charm integrated with a world-class convention center. The layout is perfect for our needs. It is located in the heart of this small city with a wide variety of restaurants and shops within a few blocks of the hotel. They include Annie Bailey’s Irish Pub, the Federal Taphouse with 99 taps and great food, the Bistro Barbaret & Bakery and a roof top bar & eatery just to name a few. Visitors will have endless opportunities to explore one of the largest National Historic Register Districts in the country.


There is a fabulous historic Central Market that you should not miss.


The Hotel Features include:

  • Reduced parking fees of $5.00 per day at the Marriott (plus tax) for all convention attendees
  • Free internet in all guest rooms
  • The entire convention and Institute conveniently located under one roof!
  • Complimentary fitness center access, pool and a full-service spa


The construction of the convention center had to preserve and incorporate a historic 1804 Federal Style landmark home called the Montgomery House within the hotel.


During construction they discovered a portion of the “ Underground Railroad” and this archaeological dig can be viewed behind glass from the section of the hotel where we will have a reception.


The exhibit hall is huge, some 30,000 square feet.


The Institute Committee worked very well together. Director Ashley Turner was well prepared and ran a well-organized and efficient agenda. To date they are all on the same page and are actually ahead of schedule.  The hotel staff was very attentive and accommodating. There will be no issues with spatial dilution at this venue. Once again, kudos are in order for our Executive Director, Barbara Cassaday.


Paul Adams, RPT Vice-President