Meeting planners walked the blue carpet up to the entrance of Fountain Plaza where they were greeted by members of the DCVB and led up to the 19th floor of the iconic Fountain Place building.
Inside, meeting planners sampled food from sponsors such as Stephan Pyles, Private Social and Marquee Grille. The planners chatted amongst themselves, drinks in hand, when a voice came overhead.
“I’d like to introduce Mr. Dallas himself, Mr. J.R. Ewing, Larry Hagman.”
A man in a cowboy hat approached the dance floor. “How many of you grew up on I Dream of Jeannie?” he asked to a round of applause. “How ‘bout Dallas?” the crowd cheered louder. “So you know me,” said the famous Mr. Hagman, who spent the evening taking pictures and fist bumping the planners. He talked about the upcoming season of Dallas, the pleasure of being back at Southfork Ranch, and his stay at the Omni Dallas hotel. “It is a pleasure.”
Mr. Hagman Introduced Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings, who approached the dance floor, full of charisma and said to the famous actor, “You were the one man I envied, being with Barbara Eden every night.”
“Welcome to Dallas, Texas,” the Mayor said to the crowd of planners, “Dallas is back and we are back in a very big way.”
A Dallas resident for 35 years, Mayor Rawlings says he has never seen the city look better. He discussed Dallas’ many strong suits, such as being named the number one sports town last year, having the world’s largest contiguous arts complex and more. “We are on the map,” he professed, “there’s so much to do in Dallas.”
He introduced Dallas Convention and Visitors Bureau President, Phillip Jones, who took to the dance floor and addressed the audience, saying “It’s time to do a double take. Take another look.” Jones requested the meeting planners take a look out the 360-degree window view from the 19th floor of Fountain Place and discussed the 15 billion dollars worth of development currently going on in the city.
He pointed out the arts district and listed the various performances happening that evening at the Dallas Opera, the Dallas Symphony Orchestra and more. He touched on the 100 million dollar project to connect the arts district to Uptown. He encouraged the planners to glance at the American Airlines Center, home of the World Champion Dallas Mavericks, and finally asked them to sweep their eyes through downtown and rest on the Dallas Convention Center and the development going on downtown as retail and residential areas have begun to repopulate.
The evening is currently continuing at Texas Spice restaurant where meeting planners are dancing away at “After Glow”. Tomorrow morning, they will rise and prepare for another day of getting to know such an incredible city. We have no doubt they will do a “Double Take”.