Convention Bulletin 1999

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     It is time to plan for the 1999 convention of the National

Federation of the Blind. Last year's convention in Dallas was one

of the best we have ever experienced--a great hotel staff, a

truly impressive program and exhibits, and fellowship of the

highest order. The year before, 1997, we set an attendance record

in New Orleans. Atlanta in 1999, however, promises to bring not

only a bigger and better program but also likely a record

attendance, as we gather to celebrate the life and work of Dr.

Jernigan and to continue our march to equal opportunity and full

participation through the movement he loved and led.
     We will meet at the Marriott Marquis in downtown Atlanta, a

truly beautiful and spacious world-class hotel. Rooms have been

reserved for us at both the Marquis and the Atlanta Hilton and

Towers, a short walk away. The Marquis, with its 120,000 square

feet of meeting space and over 1,600 guest rooms, will be perfect

for our convention. The Hilton and Towers has over 1,200

elegantly furnished guest rooms and a number of special guest

services.
     Once again, our hotel rates at the Marquis are the envy of

all. For the 1999 convention they are singles, $57; doubles and

twins, $59; triples, $61; and quads, $63. In addition to the room

rates there will be a tax, which at present is 14 percent. There

will be no charge for children in the room with parents as long

as no extra bed is requested.
graphic of southern plantation home and text: Atlanta '99
     For 1999 convention room reservations you should write

directly to Atlanta Marriott Marquis, 265 Peachtree Center

Avenue, Atlanta, Georgia 30303, or call (404) 521-0000. Marriott

has a national toll-free number, but do not (we emphasize not)

use it. Reservations made through this national number will not

be valid. They must be made directly with the hotel. The hotel

will want a deposit of $60 or a credit card number. If a credit

card is used, the deposit will be charged against your card

immediately, just as would be the case with a $60 check. If a

reservation is canceled prior to June 4, 1999, $30 of the $60

deposit will be returned. Otherwise refunds will not be made.
     The Marquis is a beautiful, fifty-story atrium hotel with a

panoramic view of this bustling city in the heart of the New

South. It is twelve miles north of the Atlanta-Hartsfield

International Airport. Those driving to the convention will find

the hotel conveniently located off of Interstate 85, by taking

Exit 96, International Boulevard, turning left onto International

Boulevard, going to Peachtree Center Avenue, and turning right.

The hotel is on the right in the second block. There are three

excellent restaurants in the Marquis: Allie's American Grille,

open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner; Atrium Express, open for

breakfast and lunch; and Marquis Steakhouse, open for dinner

only. Champions Sports Bar is open until 2:00 a.m. and serves

lunch and dinner. The hotel features indoor and outdoor pools, a

solarium, a health club, whirlpool, and sauna. Rooms provide

voice mail, telephone data ports, and complimentary in-room

coffee.
     The Hilton and Towers combines a convenient location right

across the street from the Marquis with superb accommodations and

amenities. Rooms are newly renovated, spacious, and luxurious,

with rich cherry furnishings and a warm atmosphere.
     Since both hotels are in the heart of downtown Atlanta,

Federationists attending the convention will have access to a

wealth of restaurants, shops, and other attractions like Martin

Luther King Center (1.5 miles), Underground Atlanta (0.8 mile),

and World of Coca-Cola (0.8 mile). See later issues of the

Monitor for information on tours and other outings into the

Greater Atlanta area.
     The 1999 convention of the National Federation of the Blind

will be a truly exciting and memorable event, with a program

unparalleled, an exciting city to explore, and a rededication to

the goals and work of our movement. Make plans now to be a part

of it. The schedule this year is a little different from the one

to which we are accustomed. Pre-convention seminars for parents

of blind children and other groups and set-up of the exhibit hall

will take place on Wednesday, June 30, and adjournment will be

Tuesday, July 6, at 5:00 p.m. To assure a room in one of the

convention hotels at convention rates, you must make reservations

early. Convention registration will begin on Thursday, July 1,

and both Thursday and Friday will be filled with meetings of

divisions and committees, including the Friday morning annual

meeting of the Board of Directors of the National Federation of

the Blind, which is open to all. General convention sessions

begin on Saturday and continue through the afternoon of Tuesday,

July 6. The annual banquet will take place on Monday evening,

July 5.
     Remember that as usual we need door prizes from state

affiliates, local chapters, and individuals. Once again, prizes

should be small in size but large in value. Cash, of course, is

always appropriate and welcome. As a general rule we ask that

prizes of any variety have a value of at least $25. Drawings will

occur steadily throughout the convention sessions, and you can

anticipate a grand prize of truly impressive proportions to be

drawn at the banquet. You may bring door prizes with you or send

them ahead of time to Roger Womble, 3966 Wildwood Lake Drive,

S.W., Atlanta, Georgia 30331-4361.
     The best collection of exhibits, featuring new technology;

meetings of our special interest groups, committees, and

divisions; memorable tours arranged by the host Georgia

affiliate; famous Southern hospitality; the most stimulating and

provocative program items of any meeting of the blind in the

world; the chance to renew friendships in our Federation family;

and the unparalleled opportunity to be where the real action is

and where decisions are being made--all of these mean you will

not want to miss being a part of the 1999 National Convention.

Hotel reservations are now being accepted. Make yours right away,

and we'll see you in Atlanta in 1999!

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