The Penticton Hospitality Association has confirmed that the Jehovah's Witnesses have chosen Penticton as a conference site for the next few years.
“The association is delighted to, yet again, welcome the Jehovah’s Witness organization to Penticton,” said Ed Brown, president of the PHA, which represents the Penticton hotels and motels. “Our relationship with them is going from strength to strength and I’d like to acknowledge the great efforts of my fellow board members, Trinka Pontes and Barb Schneiderat, who, in conjunction with Sally Pierce of the South Okanagan Events Centre, worked tirelessly to make this happen.”
Dean Clarke, general manager of the SOEC and the Penticton Trade and Convention Centre, confirmed the contract had been made, but declined to comment on the details. The Jehovah's Witnesses, he explained, had asked the SOEC management to hold off until they made their own official announcement, expected in November.
He did say, however, that Pierce and their team had been working hard to secure a long-term contract for the Jehovah's Witnesses convention, which is expected to draw 2,500 attendees to Penticton in June 2013.
“This represents a significant commercial boost for the association’s members and the wider community as a whole,” said Brown.
Clarke said the convention is just part of what will be a banner year for the Trade and Convention Centre. This year, he said, has been a strong year for the centre, but 2013 will really show the fruits of their labours.
“We put our noses to the grindstone and were really able to secure a banner year for 2013,” said Clarke. “We’ve done really well with booking the facility. We’ve focused on selling it, we’ve focused on going after conventions, we’ve focused on business in January and February and we are starting to see results.”