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These two turkeys won’t be Thanksgiving dinner. Carl Wittenburg, 2017 National Turkey Federation Chairman, and his wife Sharlene raised the National Thanksgiving Turkey and the Alternate in Minnesota with the help of five Douglas County 4-H members who helped the birds get used to people. A send-off event was held on Nov. 16 at Brandon (MN) High School ahead of the birds’ journey to Washington, D.C. for their Presidential pardons. From left: Kerryn Lund, Cristina Kuismi, Kodi Bundermann, Sharlene Wittenburg and Carl Wittenburg.

Federal Appellate Court Allows
Partial Enforcement of Trump Travel Ban

Todd McElwee

A three-judge panel from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in San Francisco has upheld a portion of President Donald Trump’s latest travel ban ruling visitors from Chad, Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen and Somalia could not enter the U.S. without possessing a bona fide relationship to an American person or entity.



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Marriott Introduces “Hotel Room of the Future”

Grant Broadhurst

Step aside, staff. Marriott International wants its rooms to remember you and your preferences.
In partnership with technology companies Samsung and Legrand, Marriott International introduced its vision for the “Hotel Room of the Future” on November 14 that will allow guests to control their rooms with their voices and have their preferences saved between stays. Marriott expects aspects of its experimental room to be rolled out to its brands within the next five years.

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Puerto Rico Governor Says Time to Rebuild; Come Back Better than Ever

Grant Broadhurst

Hurricane Maria caused $94 billion in damage to Puerto Rico, according to the island’s governor, and he wants the island to be treated equally by the federal government as it rebuilds better than ever.
Gov. Ricardo Rosselló said at a Nov. 13 press conference in Washington, D.C. that Puerto Rico is out of the life-sustaining phase of its recovery from Hurricane Maria and is now in the rebuilding phase. A key goal is rebuilding and replacing – rather than simply restoring – the electric grid.

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Charles Jeffers Tapped as COO for Visit Baltimore

Jonathan Trager

Charles Jeffers II, former COO for Destinations International, has now taken on the COO role for Visit Baltimore.
The industry veteran’s first day on the job was on Nov. 13. He fills the spot vacated a year ago by Ron Melton, who took a job with the International Association of Venue Managers.

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2017-2018 E-Blast and
Turn the Page Hot Dates

HOTS

A Giant Commercial with Commercials… Thanksgiving is a time when everyone can pretend they are accepting a prestigious award at the Oscars and ramble on (and on, and on) about the people who helped them get to where they are today. HOTS generally expresses gratitude for being HOTS rather than some less interesting person. Of course, food also plays a starring role at Thanksgiving because the holiday’s roots lie in a giant meal, which is probably the best excuse for a major national holiday ever. Even so, HOTS’ favorite part of turkey day is not the food or the narcissistic gratitude, but the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. The parade is ultimately a giant commercial for Broadway musicals, children’s television shows, high school music programs and singers HOTS has never heard about. Breaking up this giant commercial, there are more commercials for viewers at home. What’s more American than that?

 

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