Gaylord Palms snow tubing


Save up to 20% when you book a holiday package at the Gaylord Palms (Kissimmee, FL), for stays between November 21 – January 7, 2018. Here are some of the perks included with this offer. ICE! featuring Christmas Around the World; breakfast with Charlie Brown™ & Friends; Build-A-Bear Workshop® Scavenger Hunt; snow tubing; gingerbread decorating; photos with Santa; and an all-new Cirque Dreams UnWrapped, a free live stage show.

Paradisus Palma Real by Melia

Time is running out to book exotic Meliá resorts and save up to 35% on select properties in the United States, the Dominican Republic, and Mexico. Each property has its own incentives, but you must book by October 31 for stays by March 31, 2018. Possible resorts include Paradisus Palma Real (Punta Cana), Meliá Caribe Tropical (Dominican Republic), ME Miami (Miami, FL), and Paradisus La Perla (Playa del Carmen).


A Lowe and Behold design

Lowe and Behold bought Max King Events in early October. The acquisition gives the Orlando, FL company a wider presence with floral and design concepts for events. “The combined company will create a ‘One Stop Shop’ for both corporate and social events, providing a much wider latitude of choices and capabilities,” said Lowe, adding that the company is expanding their markets around the nation. New co-owners are Randy Lowe and Jean-Michel Santacreu. Sales team members are Jessica Callahan and Savannah Slawson.

EverBlocks, fun with recycled cardboard


Some of my memorably favorite meetings were team building-focused events. Now comes EverBlock Jr with an idea I think is ideal to pop into a creative break from sessions or to get your group to rally around their teams. EverBlocks are modular building blocks in a variety of colors, made from lightweight recycled cardboard. More flexible than plastic blocks, they are shipped in flat pieces and require no tools, glue or tap to assemble.

If you’ve even seen a Cirque du Soleil show, you know every act is extraordinary and requires extreme agility, confidence, strength and skills. Now two Cirque veterans have created a 50,000 sf indoor obstacle park designed with unique, challenging and safe courses for adults (and kids) to test their mettle. Located just north of Orlando in Lake Mary, Planet Obstacle is a great environment to learn about fitness and how to connect with others. Full buyout for 540 people. An on-site café and breakout rooms are optional.

Planet Obstacle offers challenging, unique team building events; (407) 233-3750; @PlanetObstacle.


The Napa Valley Wine Train wants to show its appreciation to all the first responders, fire-fighters, and public agencies who heroically fought the fires that ravaged Sonoma and Napa California regions. As a way to thank the “Heroes and Helpers” who combatted the fires, the Napa Valley Wine Train is offering through October 31 a “Free Lunch on our Gourmet Express Train.”

(707) 251-5280 to book.

Napa Valley Wine Train honors those who fought the fires in Sonoma and Napa Valleys


From November 1-19, LEGOLAND® Florida Resort once again honors U.S. military veterans with free theme park admission plus 50 percent off tickets for up to six guests. Active military receive free admittance to both the theme and water park all year. To receive free admission, U.S. vets must present valid military ID or proof of veteran status at the theme park ticket windows on the day of their visit. This offer not available online or by phone. On Veterans Day (Saturday, Nov. 11) only, vets will receive additional offers, including 10 percent discount on retail purchases and food and beverage items; Photo partner Picsolve will offer its DigiPass for just $9.99 (plus tax) and single printed pictures for $5 (plus tax). Also, at the skill games managed by HB Leisure, guests who purchase four games will get a fifth game free (not including “prize every time” games). To receive the Nov. 11 discounts, veterans with valid ID can request a wristband and flyer at the ticket windows. The discount only will be honored for those wearing the wristband.

Gaylord Rockies Grand Lodge in Aurora, CO opens in 2018


Gaylord Rockies Resort & Convention Center (Aurora, CO), located minutes from Denver International Airport, opens late in 2018. There will be over 1,500 guest rooms, including 114 suites, and more than 485,000 sf of meeting and convention space. As a gateway to the Rockies, expect many outdoors and active options.


WalletHub collects and analyzes data. No, we’re not talking about the latest political fights going on daily across the planet. These are useful factoids. For instance, one survey compared more than 180 of the largest U.S. cities across 24 key metrics. The data set ranges from affordability and accessibility of high-quality restaurants to food festivals per capita to craft breweries and wineries per capita. I’m in Orlando so I was pleased, though not surprised, to see that the city rated #1 for the number of restaurants per capita and for affordability & accessibility of highly rated restaurants. For the full results of that survey, go to More meaningful to most people might be the latest survey on the best credit cards to have for travel, either domestically or internationally. Applying for the right card now may give you enough time to earn up to $625 in free travel. More than 1000 credit card offers were examined. Some of the categories include: best initial bonus; best overall travel rewards; best airline rewards; and best hotel travel rewards. Curious?

Karen Kuzsel is a writer-editor based in the Orlando area who specializes in the hospitality, entertainment, meetings & events industries. She is an active member of ILEA and MPI and is now serving on the 2016 – 2017 MPI Global Advisory Board for The Meeting Professional Magazine for the second consecutive year. Karen writes about food & wine, spas, destinations, venues, meetings & events. A career journalist, she has owned magazines, written for newspapers, trade publications, radio and TV. As her alter-ego, Natasha, The Psychic Lady, she is a featured entertainer for corporate and social events.;; @karenkuzsel; @thepsychiclady.