I just returned to CAK from a whirlwind set of trips. Early last week I ventured out to Las Vegas for ACI-NA's Air Service & Data Planning Seminar - immediately followed by a stop off in Denver for four days of skiing the Rockies.
It may seem like this conference was set in a city that stays up all night, but we spent two bright-eyed days learning about how to find the best mix of data to showcase our communities to airline planners in the hopes of securing new routes and/ or strengthening old ones. I had the opportunity to learn first hand from some of North America's most experienced airline route planners, airport air-service directors and consultants. They say that what happens in Vegas, stays there, but this time around, I took home some great tools and a wealth of new information that I hope will help us as CAK moves forward in 2010.
One of my favorite surprises at the conference was the attendance of Ben Mutzabaugh, of USA TODAY's, Today In The Sky blog. I have been a closet fan of Ben since I discovered his blog back in college so the chance to meet Ben in person was super cool.
I also had a chance to network, share ideas, and create incredible memories with airport friends and colleagues - all while seeing some amazing sites (check out the photo of the waterfall outside of the new Aria Resort and Casino at City Center taken by Justin from Kansas City).
After the conference wrapped up, I headed out to Denver to squeeze in a quick vacation on the slopes. Northeast Ohio skiers may be glad to know that while Beaver Creek and Vail are not getting quite their typical snowfall for this time of year, the conditions are still top notch and flights to Denver on Frontier Airlines are still incredibly reasonable