CVB secures booking for conference center

There’s not one place setting in the cupboard, not one table, not one chair. But there is already at least one booking at the still-to-be-built conference center at the new National Guard armory in Buckhannon.

Laura Meadows, executive director of the Upshur County Convention and Visitors Bureau, said a Christmas craft show, which is typically held at the current armory and at Buckhannon-Upshur Middle School, has already signed up to stage its event at the new facility in November 2014.

Other groups have asked to be included on the list to host an event at the conference center.

“We call them our tentative bookings,” Meadows said.

The facility is expected to be open in August 2014, and Meadows said the CVB is expecting to hire a full-time employee in the spring just to handle the conference center operations.

“As soon as the facility is ready to go,” Meadows said, “we will jump in head-first.”

CVB officials are still in discussions with the National Guard on details regarding the center’s operations.

“We still don’t even know what we can charge to use the facility,” Meadows said, “but, of course, it will be affordable.”

That the future facility is already generating excitement with only word-of-mouth marketing has CVB officials feeling like kids at Christmas.

“It’s incredible,” Meadows said. “It just shows that people want a bigger venue in Buckhannon, a new venue.”