What a time to be in Toronto! Following the Toronto Raptors historic run to their first ever NBA Championship, the city now turns its attention to hosting Meeting Planners International (MPI) World Education Congress (WEC), June 15 – 18, 2019. The premier event in the meetings industry brings more than 2,500 meeting professionals to the city, providing the opportunity to showcase the best the city has to offer as a live audition for future meetings and events from around the world. Hosting WEC19 in Toronto just adds to the buzz & spotlight surrounding Toronto on the world stage right now.
The MPI events team did a radical redesign of WEC experience in 2018 in collaboration with Denmark-based Event Design Collective, and tweaked sections of that design for 2019 with an overarching theme of “Stop Planning Meetings, Start Planning Shared Experiences.”
Numbers tracked higher than usual for the Toronto 2019 WEC gathering and Melinda Burdette, CMP, CMM, HMCC and director events for MPI, says the combination of the destination and the fear of missing out certainly helped with the draw for planners to attend.
“We really threw everything against the wall last year and tore it apart and this year is another shared experience,” Burdette explains. “We’re continuing with short, focused general sessions that are very high energy, with entertainment values mixed in with education. We really feel that it’s important to bookend each day, to gather everyone together so that planners will share all that they have learned that day with each other.”
According to Burdette the 2018 experience “was so different from any other conference they had ever been to. We’ve mixed it up so that planners can craft whatever experience they want.” Burdette understands who the audience is and the pressure to produce a meeting for meeting planners is understandably daunting. But at the end of the day, Burdette says, “planners have to make the conference work for them; you have to be there for your own professional development.”
Attendees of the Opening Night Celebration will “Celebrate Canada” on Toronto’s iconic Echo Beach at Ontario Place with big stages, big sounds and big fun all around. Featuring lakeside views and interactive experiences, including an assortment of tastes from across the country, delight in the cheerful summer vibes of the great Canadian outdoors. It’s Canada’s festival, representing the country’s robust diversity through vibrant performances, lively culinary activations and colorful activities. Don’t miss the celebration. Casual summer attire is recommended. This event is hosted by Business Events Toronto and Business Events Canada’s destination partners.
Home to the country’s big-ticket events, globally inspired cuisine, vibrant nightlife, and colorful entertainment. Attendees will experience all of this set against the dazzling backdrop of Toronto’s skyline during the Closing Night Celebration: Let Yourself In at Rebel & Cabana Pool Bar. The evening will feature interactive dance performances, experiential installations, Toronto-centric entertainment and a flavorful journey across the city’s multicultural neighborhoods.
Rebel & Cabana Pool Bar are extraordinary, multi-dimensional spaces that evolve through the day and well into the night with 45,000 square feet of striking design and unexpected wonder combined with powerful sound, immersive light, sensual forms and tactile details to delight and astound at every turn. Cabana Pool Bar transforms Toronto’s waterfront into a “Day-to-Night” party spot with private cabanas, daybeds and enough room for 2,500 people to take in the view and all the sun you can take. This multipurpose venue offers breathtaking views of the city skyline and waterfront.
Thank you to all sponsors for their support of hosting MPI WEC19 in Toronto.