The South Shore Convention and Visitors Authority and Radisson Hotel Star Plaza are sponsoring the inaugural Meeting Professionals International Education Summit at Radisson Hotel Star Plaza, hosted by MPI chapters of Indiana, Wisconsin and Michigan. The summit anticipates approximately 160 attendees will be in the region through Tuesday, Nov. 18.

During the summit, attendees will enjoy numerous educational sessions, networking opportunities for MPI planners and suppliers, an exhibition and special events. On Monday, Nov. 17, attendees will be able to experience various restaurants in Crown Point during a dine-around, including Prime Steakhouse, Lucrezia Ristorante, Carriage Court Pizza and Crown Brewing, and Zodiac Lounge.

Kristen Thomas, director of sales for the South Shore CVA, stated that the MPI organization is comprised of meeting planners and suppliers, which includes state associations, hotels, CVBs, stand-alone banquet halls, catering companies and more.

The summit is significant to the area because of the potential to bring back meeting planners, explained Speros A. Batistatos, president and CEO of the South Shore CVA.

"Hosting this event along the South Shore is like doing a site visit for a huge group of meeting planners in two days. Attendees will experience our area, restaurants and banquet centers," Batistatos said.

Meeting Professionals International was founded in 1972 and believes that meeting and event planners serve a critical role in the success of business. Deann Patena, director of sales and marketing for Radisson Hotel Star Plaza and past president of the Indiana Chapter of MPI, explained that the organization is committed to giving its members the best in professional development, business opportunities and a vibrant industry community. MPI is an international organization with chapters in several states and around the world.

For more information on Meeting Professionals International, visit For more information on the local chapter of MPI, visit