Conventions get altruistic twist |

Conventions get altruistic twist

Gina Barker, The Park Record

A few hundred miles away from home, a group of conference guests at the St. Regis Deer Valley gathered together for an event. It was not a "team building" exercise, although it had the look and feel of the stereotypical conference event. The group gathered outside to work as a team to build bikes for the Make A Wish Foundation, one of several incoming groups that have been seeking out a hint of altruism for their events.

"A lot of groups have a mindset of wanting to do something," said Terri Gentry, Director of Catering and Conference Services for the hotel, "to partner with the community."

"We started seeing this a few years ago," she added. " as we see younger people enter companies, this is something they are very interested in."

In 10 groups, the teams each built one girl’s and one boy’s bicycle, and all 20 were picked up by volunteers from the foundation.

In the past, the resort has included volunteer events for other groups, a growing trend Gentry said, with as many as seven out of 10 conventions asking about volunteer opportunities. From putt-putt golf that supports local food banks to packing backpacks with school supplies, the hotel is putting its best foot forward in catering to the volunteer trend for meetings and conventions that is growing across the nation.

"Companies look for ways to get out there and participate," Gentry said. "People area asking about how they can give back more and more."

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