June 16, 2008
For immediate release
57TH NATIONAL SQUARE DANCE CONVENTION® IS AN INTERNATIONAL AFFAIR
(Wichita, Kan.) - Dancers from eight foreign countries, including the United Kingdom, Japan and Germany, will be among the expected 7,000 registered attendees to the 57th National Square Dance Convention® (NSDC) - "Promenade on the Prairie" in Wichita, June 25-28. The convention will be held in the Century II Performing Arts and Convention Center, with additional dancing venues at the Hyatt Regency Wichita and the Broadview Hotel.
The event is expected to generate $2.5 million in economic impact. Attendees will participate in dancing scheduled from 9 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. each day along with a caller's school, educational programs and a fashion show. They also will be participating in group tours and day trips throughout Wichita and south-central Kansas.
As of June 1, 51 dancers from England, 23 from Canada, 14 from Japan and seven from Germany were among the 110 advance international registrations for the convention. Kansas led domestic registrations with 1,214, Missouri was second with 471 and Texas was third with 453.
"This is a wonderful opportunity for Wichita to welcome people from around the nation and the world," said John Rolfe, president and CEO of the Greater Wichita Convention & Visitors Bureau. "Our residents have a reputation for being friendly people and I'm certain everyone will make sure that the square dancers enjoy their stay in our city."
The GWCVB has assisted the NSDC with room reservations at 21 contracted hotels in the downtown area and along Kellogg. Additionally, GWCVB representatives are making personal calls and visits to 60 restaurants near Century II, and sent letters to more than 500 restaurants, to help them prepare for the large number of convention attendees.
The convention's keynote speaker is Jim Maczko of San Diego, who is considered one of the nation's foremost square dance leaders. He began square dancing in 1954, at age 7, and became one of the founding fathers of the United States Square Dancers of America, serving as its first president from 1981 to 1983.
The public can attend the convention's opening ceremony June 25, 5 p.m., in A. Price Woodard Park. The public is invited to the Anderson Tree Dedication ceremony in Delano Park June 26, 10 a.m., where Mayor Carl Brewer and First Lady Cathy Brewer will perform with square dancers. The public can watch the Parade of States that starts at Century II, June 28, 5 p.m., and proceeds to the closing ceremony at Lawrence-Dumont Stadium that starts at 5:45 p.m. Additionally, the public can watch square dancing on Century II's Kennedy Plaza each day during the convention from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
For more information about the convention, visit http://www.57nsdc.com/, or contact Forrest and Pat Haskins, NSDC publicity chairman, at 785.224.1595 or 785.233.8265.
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