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OVG360 Announces Promotions for the Owensboro Convention Center and the Owensboro Sportscenter

OVG360, the provider of Venue Management to the Owensboro Convention Center and the Owensboro Sportscenter, is excited to share news of the promotion of two of our Owensboro team members!

Thomas Dyer has been promoted to Director of the Owensboro Sportscenter.  He has been the Operations and Custodial Manager of the historic venue since November 2020, and has most recently, with Assistant General Manager, Jessica Beckmann’s departure, stepped in to the Director role on an interim basis. He has a Bachelor’s degree from Miami University Ohio in Sports Leadership and Management.  Prior to his current role, he was with the Wisconsin Rapids Rafters as Operations Manager and Seasonal Ticket Accounts Manager.  “Thomas brings experience and enthusiasm, and we are excited about his new role at the Owensboro Sportscenter,” said General Manager, Jeff Esposito.

Lexi Lundy has been promoted to full-time Event Manager with the Owensboro Convention Center.  She began her career at the venue in November of last year as a part-time Event Coordinator.  “Her enthusiasm and eye for décor has completely transformed our in-house events such as Cork & Cuisine,” stated Director of Events, Cody Thomas.

Lexi has a Bachelor’s degree from at Murray State University in Nonprofit Leadership Management specializing in special event planning.  When she is not working, she loves to spend quality time with her husband and two children.  

For more information about the Owensboro Sportscenter, please visit OwensboroSportscenter.com and for the Owensboro Convention Center, visit OwensboroCenter.com.

Hot Dog Days of Summer Coming to the Kentucky Legend Cafe!

Ready for a taste of summer? OVG360, the provider of Venue Management to the Owensboro Convention Center is proud to partner with Kentucky Legend for a delicious take on a classic favorite!

Drawing upon July being National Hot Dog Month, the Hot Dog Days of Summer will feature a specialty hot dog Lunch Special at the Kentucky Legend Café for the remaining Fridays throughout July.  Guests are invited to come and try them all! 

Friday, July 8 – The Texas Dog
Topped with chili, cheese, and jalapenos

Friday, July 15 – The Pastrami Dog
Topped with pastrami, Swiss cheese, mustard, and a pickle

Friday, July 22 – The Junkyard Dog
Topped with chili, mustard, grilled onions, and French fries

Friday, July 29 – The Seattle Dog
Topped with cream cheese, grilled onions, jalapenos, and Sriracha sauce

“I love the creativity of our Food and Beverage team!” stated Director of Marketing, Jeanette Goins.  “Most people know the Chicago Dog, but these are also varieties you’ll find on menus all across the U.S.  It’s great to be able to bring a taste of that here locally.”

“Obviously National Hot Dog Month is near and dear to us at Kentucky Legend!  We couldn’t be more thrilled to be a part of this creative celebration with the Owensboro Convention Center. We hope everyone can find some time to come on over and try one of our delicious hot dogs with a fun twist!” says Brooklyn Maple, Brand Manager for Specialty Foods Group, LLC.

The Kentucky Legend Café is located inside the Owensboro Convention Center and is open for lunch from 10am to 2pm Monday through Friday for dine-in and carry-out. All Daily Lunch Specials are $10 and come with choice of a side item or make it a combo with a drink for $12.  Garden salad bar and soup of the day are also available.  All major credit cards are accepted and prices include tax. For the complete menu: https://bit.ly/34Z012R

Follow the Owensboro Convention Center on Facebook and Twitter to stay in the foodie know and see the weekly lunch specials on Mondays!

The Future is Looking Bright!

OVG360, the provider of Venue Management to the Owensboro Convention Center, is looking forward to an impactful 2022-2023!  With under a month remaining in the current fiscal year, which will end on June 30, 2022, we are projecting to beat our current year budget by over $400,000.  Next year is looking outstanding with already more definite revenue on the books vs. prior year.
 
“Our goal is to have $1 million on the books for the start of the new fiscal year, and our sales team has done a phenomenal job securing every opportunity that has been generated,” stated Josh Gann, Director of Sales. 
 
The Owensboro Convention Center team has continued its strong focus on exceeding client expectations, which is evident not only in the industry accolades received this year, including being named one of the Top 30 Convention Centers in North America and winning the prestigious Prime Site Award for the ninth time, but also in event booking.  “We have had some groups, such as Kentucky Water and Waste Water Operators Association, which was recently in-house, that rebooked before their event ended,” added Gann.  “Having organizations such as these return means an even greater positive economic impact for the community.”
 
Conventions/conferences that are scheduled for fiscal year 2022-2023 include:
 
Kentucky League of Cities
Kentucky Broadcasters Association
Kentucky Society of Association Executives
Kentucky Bar Association
Kentucky Public Procurement Association Annual Forum and Products Expo
Women in Agriculture Conference
44th Kentucky Aviation Association Conference and Exhibition
Kentucky Rehabilitation Association Training Conference
Kentucky Sheriff’s Association Conference
Green River Firefighters Association Bryant Stiles Officers School
Green River Municipal Clerks Association
Kentucky United Methodist Conference
Kentucky Water and Waste Water Operators Association
 
The new sports court flooring will be utilized for events such as the Battle of the Blue Bridge Basketball Tournament in July and the Bluegrass Futsal Cup in December.  The S3DA National Indoor Championship will return for the second consecutive year in March 2023.  Earlier this year that event saw over 2,000 attendees over the four day competition.
 
“Continuing focus on enhancing the customer experience is a key factor in attracting these quality events to Owensboro,” said General Manager, Jeff Esposito.  “With the on-going support of the City of Owensboro and our other community partners, we are looking forward to hosting a successful 2022-2023!”
 
For more information about upcoming events or to inquire about holding an event at the venue, please visit OwensboroCenter.com or call 270-687-8800.

OVG360 Appoints Industry Veteran Jeff Esposito as General Manager

OVG360, the provider of Venue Management to the Owensboro Convention Center and Owensboro Sportscenter, is pleased to announce that Jeff Esposito is joining the team on May 25, 2022, as the new General Manager, replacing Laura Alexander, who recently took a new position with OVG360 in Lexington.

Mr. Esposito is an accomplished executive with decades of experience leading successful event facilities. He recently served as the Executive Director of the CAM-PLEX Multi-Event Facilities in Gillette, Wyoming, where he provided leadership for the City and County funded 1,100-acre mixed-use facility with 900-seat performing arts theater, 230,000 sq. ft. convention space, 1,600 RV sites, equine facilities, ice arena, racetrack, and grandstand. His accomplishments while there included modernizing the policies, procedures, and operations of this multi-use facility to current industry standards and bringing new high impact business into the local market.

“I’m beyond excited to join the incredible team at the Owensboro Convention Center and to work with local stakeholders to serve this vibrant community,” said Mr. Esposito.

Prior to leading the team in Gillette, Mr. Esposito was employed as the Co-Manager at Walmart Stores in Erie, Pennsylvania, where he directed the management team of a retail super-center. From 2008-2016, he served as General Manager of the Bayfront Convention Center in Erie, Pennsylvania.

“We are delighted to have Jeff coming to Owensboro to lead the OVG360 team. Known in the industry as a results-oriented, decisive leader, we are confident he will continue to cement the Owensboro Convention Center and Sportscenter as the place in the Commonwealth to host conferences and events which provides a significant economic impact to our community,” commented Nate Pagan, City of Owensboro’s City Manager.

“We could not be more excited to add Jeff to our team,” stated Dave Anderson, Regional Vice President for OVG360. “His over 25-year track record in the convention industry and his distinctive leadership approach position him as the perfect person to run the Owensboro Convention Center.”

Mr. Esposito holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Specialized Studies from Edinboro University, Pennsylvania, and he is a member of the International Association of Venue Managers.

Niantic Community Day

In-person Niantic Community Day Community Day meetups are heading to select cities worldwide and Owensboro is one of them!  Join Niantic, the developer of Pokémon Go, Pikmin Bloom, Ingress Prime and more on the Owensboro Convention Center front lawn this Saturday, May 21 from 11am to 2pm!

Players of all games can meet up with other Explorers and receive free giveaways (while supplies last!).  Come witness the magic players experience and share your favorite memories using #CommunityDay and #MeetYouOutThere on social media!

Players do not need to register to participate.

A complete list of U.S. cities featuring in-person Community Day meetups in addition to Owensboro, KY include:

  • Phoenix, AZ
  • Oakland, CA
  • Indianapolis, IN
  • Chicago, IL
  • St. Louis, MO
  • New York City, NY
  • Winnipeg, CAN 
  • Austin, TX
  • Seattle, WA
  • Houston, TX
  • Alexandria, VA
  • Washington, DC
  • Los Angeles, CA
  • Bellevue, WA
  • San Antonio, TX
  • Miami, FL 
  • Boston, MA 
  • New Orleans, LA

Owensboro Convention Center Again Wins Prestigious Prime Site Award

OVG360, the provider of Venue Management to the Owensboro Convention Center, is honored to again be recognized as a top destination for meetings and conventions by Facilities and Destinations magazine.  For the ninth time, the venue has received the prestigious Prime Site Award which are given annually to the top convention and exposition centers in the United States.

Facilities and Destinations is a quarterly trade publication for the meetings and events industry.  Voting for the Prime Site Awards is done primarily by association and corporate meeting planners and tradeshow professionals.  The award recognizes that clients have determined that these venues and organizations are standouts in the highly competitive meetings market. 

“Being a recipient of this award again shows our commitment to hosting successful events,” stated Owensboro Convention Center’s Assistant General Manager, Jamie Scheffer.  “Whether it’s a small meeting for 10 or a banquet for 500, our commitment to service and event execution is the same.”

The Owensboro Convention Center was also named a 2022 Center of Excellence – another award showcasing the venue as a top convention center.

“The staff at the Owensboro Convention Center has strived from day one to exceed the expectations of every client,” said Tim Ross, Director of Public Events for the City of Owensboro.  “Being recognized again this year by the convention and meeting planners that utilize our tremendous facility is a testament to the commitment to excellence by the staff and the team approach that Owensboro provides to all of the groups that host events in Owensboro.  This recognition reaffirms our efforts to stand out in the industry.”

The Owensboro Convention Center will be featured as a Prime Site Award recipient in the upcoming 2022 Facilities and Destinations SuperBook issue publishing in late July.

First Basketball Event Scheduled to Take Place at the Owensboro Convention Center!

AthElite Sports Management, LLC will be hosting the first youth basketball tournament at Western Kentucky’s award-winning venue – the Owensboro Convention Center. The AthElite Memorial Day Challenge will take place from May 28th – May 29th and will utilize the four modular sports courts installed in three expo halls at the Owensboro Convention Center. Fifty or more teams consisting of both boys and girls grades 3rd – 11th are expected to attend. AthElite has hosted teams from Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Tennessee, Missouri, Arkansas, Michigan, Wisconsin, Texas, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Kansas, Ohio and Florida along with international teams from Spain and Canada in their 5 year existence. Teams from 5 or more states are expected to attend the inaugural event in Owensboro.

This will be the largest youth basketball event in the Owensboro area in spring and summer 2022, operators say. Over 1,500 people are expected to attend the basketball tournament. Guests will enjoy on-site concessions along with other amenities provided by AthElite such as streamed games, college coaches in attendance, national scouting services covering games, and will also have the opportunity to purchase tournament apparel.

The tournament will also benefit the local community with out-of-town guests utilizing Owensboro hotels, restaurants and shopping stores generating a boost in tourism revenue over the course of the weekend.

“We are looking forward to a great weekend of basketball,” says Sam Swinford, Lead Director for AthElite Sports Management. “We are so excited to be the first basketball event at the Owensboro Convention Center. We look forward to working with the team (at the venue) to showcase how great the facility is for sporting events. Our staff has been working hard to get everything ready to make this a successful event. We hope to make this event a fixture for years to come.”

“We are thrilled to host AthElite and basketball for the first time on our new sports floor this May,” stated Owensboro Convention Center Assistant General Manager, Jamie Scheffer. “Our team is dedicated to booking tournaments such as these which help drive economic impact and tourism to Owensboro.”

“Attracting successful, top caliber sports planners like Sam Swinford proves that Owensboro and Daviess County are becoming the complete sports solution. Athletes, coaches, and fans are telling us they love the brand new sports floor at the Owensboro Convention Center. We are proving the indoor sports concept is successful and creating a substantial economic impact to our community,” said Mark Calitri, President and CEO of Visit Owensboro.

Chris Gendek, Destinations Development and Sports Management with Visit Owensboro added, “We are looking forward to welcoming AthElite Sports Management to Owensboro in late May! We are fortunate to have great partners allowing us to attract high quality events that create an economic impact where all of Owensboro and Daviess County benefit.”

The media is encouraged to attend the event on May 28th-May 29th. “Pool play” games will be played on Saturday with Championship Sunday to follow.

Interested teams can contact Sam Swinford at 618-922-2263 or at Sam@AthEliteSportsManagement.com.

AthElite Sports Management is a leading youth sports event operator based out of Marion, Illinois. For more information about AthElite, visit AthEliteSportsManagement.com.

Looking for a New Lunch Favorite? Come Try These Top Picks at the Kentucky Legend Cafe!

Whether it’s in regular rotation or is only offered every few months, patrons of the Kentucky Legend Café have at least one daily lunch special that has made their taste buds fall in love!   Spectra, the provider of Venue Management to the Owensboro Convention Center, recently requested guests to cast their votes for their favorite Daily Special to be featured next week!

Monday, April 11
Meat Lovers Pizza Quesadilla – Kentucky Legend ham, bacon, pepperoni, mozzarella cheese, and marinara sauce in a grilled flour tortilla. “Who wouldn’t love all the meats in a quesadilla form?” says Cody Thomas.  “That’s two cuisines mixed into one.  Makes it even better because it’s served with a side of garlic sauce!”

Tuesday, April 12
The Cheesesteak Po’ Boy features steak topped with sautéed peppers and onions, melted Provolone cheese, and garlic mayo on a toasted hoagie bun.  Hallie Ellis calls it “cheesy, buttery, and meaty goodness,” while Tim Ross finds it “a good change of pace from some of the chicken specials.”

Wednesday, April 13
The Potato Bowl is without a doubt comfort food in a bowl.  Buttery mashed potatoes topped with savory brown gravy, corn, crispy chicken, and shredded cheese.  Michelle Pessia says “this is my favorite and I look forward to it every time!”

Thursday, April 14
What better way to slide into the mid part of the month than with Hawaiian Ham Sliders – Kentucky Legend ham, sautéed onions, melted Swiss cheese, and Dijon mayo on toasted Hawaiian slider buns. “Everything about it – the Dijon mayo, Swiss cheese, and sautéed onions are a great pair,” says Mary Midkiff.

Friday, April 15
A new addition to the specials which quickly vaulted to one of the most popular is the Steak Fajita Bowl – steak over Spanish rice topped with lettuce and tomato and served with salsa and sour cream.  When asked why it was favorite, Josh Gann commented “because it is healthy and tastes great!”

The Kentucky Legend Café is open for lunch from 10am to 2pm Monday through Friday for dine-in and carry-out. All Daily Lunch Specials are $10 and come with your choice of side item.  Make it a combo with a drink for $12.  Salad bar and soup of the day are also available.  All major credit cards are accepted and prices include tax. For the complete menu: https://bit.ly/34Z012R

Follow the Owensboro Convention Center on Facebook and Twitter to stay in the delicious know for the specials that will be available each week!

2022 Kentucky Legend Spring Cleaning Clothing Drive

Spectra, the providers of Venue Management to the Owensboro Convention Center, is proud to partner with Kentucky Legend again for the Spring Cleaning Clothing Drive!

From April 1-29, donations can be made to help those in need. Simply bring any gently worn clothing, shoes, or accessories in newborn to adult sizes to the Owensboro Convention Center.  Donation boxes will be set up near the front desk inside the lobby.  All donations received will benefit Oasis Women’s Shelter and the Help Office of Owensboro.

“As the days get warmer and we start to clean out our closets, now is the perfect time to think about our local shelters. Kentucky Legend is so thrilled to be able to help facilitate this simple opportunity to give back. These organizations provide so much care for our community throughout the year, and it is our pleasure to strive to fill their closets with essentials,” says Brooklyn Maple, Brand Manager for Specialty Foods Group LLC, makers of Kentucky Legend.

“When we were last able to partner with Kentucky Legend for a clothing drive in 2019 prior to COVID, the generosity shown by the community was tremendous!” said Jeanette Goins, Director of Marketing for the Owensboro Convention Center.  “Looking forward to seeing those donation boxes filled up again!”

Make a donation of five or more items and receive a voucher for 50% off at the Kentucky Legend Cafe located inside the Owensboro Convention Center on the first floor.  The Café is open 10am-2pm Monday-Friday for dine-in and carry-out. For the menu: https://bit.ly/34Z012R  Daily Lunch Specials and Salad Bar are also available.

Spectra Announces Staff Promotions and New Hires for the Owensboro Convention Center

Spectra, the provider of Venue Management to the Owensboro Convention Center, is pleased to welcome new members to their Owensboro team.

Josh Gann is the new Director of Sales for the Owensboro Convention Center. He brings over 20 years of sales experience with 10 of those in a sales leadership role to the team. “I made the decision to join the Owensboro Convention Center because I wanted to use my talent and experience in making a difference in our community and driving economic impact,” Josh stated.  “This role also gives me the chance to continue doing something that I really enjoy and that is developing others and helping them to succeed.” In addition, Josh enjoys fitness, golf, and time with family and friends.

J.T. Pedley has returned to the Owensboro Convention Center in the Senior Sales Manager role. He previously worked in the sales department at the Owensboro Convention Center for 4 years before moving over to Townsquare Media. J.T. is a graduate from the University of Louisville, earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Communications in 2013.
“I am really happy to be back with the Owensboro Convention Center and to be working with some great people once again,” stated Pedley. “I am most looking forward to booking events on the new sports floor and cannot wait to see the continued growth of athletic events here in Owensboro.”

Kaitlyn Alvey recently graduated from Brescia University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business. Before this she graduated from Owensboro Technical & Community College and Apollo both in 2019 through an early college program. As the new Social Sales Manager with the Owensboro Convention Center, she is very excited to be working with people to bring their parties/weddings to life. When she is not at work, Kaitlyn loves to spend time working in her garden, playing with her dogs, running, and shopping.

Jerry Jeffries is the new Operations Manager for the Owensboro Convention Center.  He moved to Owensboro from Franklin, TN where he was the Director of Facilities for a beautiful wedding venue along with an amphitheater. Jerry said, “I am honored to be working with a wonderful team at the Owensboro Convention Center. Jerries is a a proud father of 5 amazing children and “J-Pop” for 7 awesome grandchildren.  In his free time, he enjoys playing any sport or working out.

Lexi Lundy joins the team as the new Event Coordinator. She obtained her degree at Murray State University in Nonprofit Leadership Management specializing in special event planning. “The ability to work in the event industry has always been a major goal of mine, despite whether or not it was through a nonprofit,” stated Lundy.  When she is not working, she loves to spend quality time with her husband and two kids.    

Rena Hamilton has been promoted to Banquet Manager.  She began working at the convention center as the team leader with a non-profit organization and later as a part-time bartender.  Rena says, “I am happy to be on board with the Owensboro Convention Center full time.  I love the co-workers and love meeting the clients that come in.”  Outside of work, Rena enjoys spending time with family and friends.