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News & Press: Convention

RAA 42nd Annual Convention - Update on Hurricane Irma

Tuesday, September 12, 2017  
Posted by: RAA
Dear RAA Community Member:

As many communities continue to recover from Irma as well as Harvey before it, our thoughts and prayers are with those who have suffered harm from the storm and with those who are helping with recovery. We are also thinking of each of you, and know many of you have experienced direct or indirect impact as an organization, personally, or through friends and family.

We know you are also awaiting determination on whether or not RAA2017, scheduled for West Palm Beach on September 24-27, will take place as planned given Hurricane Irma’s impact on Florida and surrounding states. Our expectation at this time is that the show will go on. While we are still awaiting the official call, the Conventions and Visitors Bureau have people on the ground working with hotels and other areas to assure repair of any damages. We have communicated to the CVB that we expect the convention center to keep these priorities paramount when making a final decision on our show: the safety of our exhibitors and attendees, the needs of the city and its residents, and ensuring needed resources are available to the region for recovery.

In the meantime, our team is answering exhibitor and attendee questions about the show, their shipments, and other logistics. These are details we have now:

•    The eye of the storm’s westward shift meant the Palm Beaches endured minimal damage compared to the rest of the state.
•    The Palm Beach Convention Center did not sustain damages and will be fully functional once power is restored.
•    The airport sustained only minor damage and has reopened.
•    Area hotels, including our convention hotels, are reporting a return to operations. However, we ask your patience with reservations and other requests as the hotels prioritize recovery issues today. RAA is working to get our reservations centralized (typically, the local hotel handles reservations directly for conventions) to ensure more timely response to your needs. Our team will pursue this until resolution is achieved.

We expect to provide an additional update today and periodically thereafter, until all remaining uncertainty is resolved. We are also working steadily to resolve participants questions and concerns right now.

My personal ask of each of you is that you plan for an excellent show to take place. We fully expect that it will, and are taking every step to ensure a successful show. In the extremely unlikely event our show is disrupted, we will update you immediately.

On a last and personal note, our team is looking for ways RAA can help on the ground. We’re looking at some possible volunteer opportunities for the team and anyone who would like to join in. We will provide more information on this as well in future updates.

Thank you for your patience and support as we work through this challenge and as we keep those with more direct impacts close in our hearts.



Faye Malarkey Black
Regional Airline Association

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