GREEN BAY, Wis.(WFRV)- As events are being planned again, after a series of cancellations in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the KI Convention Center in Green Bay is seeing a boom in business. “I think just like for everybody else, it was something that was unforeseen first of all, and then something that was very tragic,” said Kristine Hall, General Manager of the KI Convention Center.
Hall has been with Hyatt Regency for over 30-years and says that major events have affected business over the span of her career, but the pandemic has been the worst. “It took a whole year to really understand what was going on,” said Hall. Pandemic protocols and restrictions on gatherings that were in place and at one time only allowed for a limited number of people inside buildings. That did not work well for larger events like weddings and business conventions. “We lost a majority of our business throughout the oandemic, we had a few travelers that still stayed with us throughout that time,” said Hall.
Both the hotel and convention center stayed open during the entire pandemic last year. “We kept a core of our staff here at the hotel and we’ve been adding to that core group of staff for the last three or four months,” said Hall. There are 35 additional positions that need to be filled, as more events are being scheduled.
With the opening of the Resch Expo Center near Lambeau Field, is that taking away business from the KI Convention Center? Hall says no because they are two different venues. “We do a totally different kind of business. We do conventions in meetings. We have small meeting rooms, and we have large meeting rooms. Our largest ballroom is about 40,000 square feet. The smallest meeting room we have is a boardroom of 12. The Resch Expo hall is a great facility that was built and opened up last year. They’re more into expositions,” said Hall.
With the Packers football season coming up, and a return to business travel, things are looking up. “We were very fortunate in May, when we held our first large convention and our second was in the month of June,” said Hall. For more information on the open positions at Hyatt Regency click here.