Congregated along the Fox River and with its southern towns little more than a stone’s throw from Lake Winnebago, Wisconsin’s Fox Cities combine “Old Wisconsin” with easy access and a walkable main convention core.
“Groups like that we have a convention hotel that’s located in our downtown,” says Kelly Ann Hekler, convention sales manager for the Fox Cities CVB. “Everything downtown is very walkable, and we have an amazing number of dining and nightlife options basically steps away.”
The region is comprised of 19 cities, with Appleton, Neenah and Grade Chute being the major communities.
“We have great downtown areas in both Neenah and Appleton, and the mall in Grand Chute is a major attraction,” Hekler says.
The area contains nearly 2,900 guest rooms and 100,000 square feet of meeting space, with the major convention property being Appleton’s Radisson Paper Valley Hotel, with 390 guest rooms and 26 meeting rooms. Other major properties include the Best Western Premiere Bridgewood Resort and Conference Center; Holiday Inn Neenah Riverwalk; and Holiday Inn Appleton.
Because the area is a historic center of printing and paper-making, groups can tour paper-baron mansions and even hold an event at the Paper Science Discovery Center, a former paper plant on the Fox River that was the site of the first hydroelectric powerhouse.
And wherever there’s a lot of paper laying around, you need to make sure it doesn’t just fly away. Enter Neenah’s Bergstrom-Mahler Museum, which, along with other glass art, offers what it describes as “the world’s most representative collection of antique and contemporary glass paperweights.”