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Know Before You Go: The Last Word on the Annual Conference in KC

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The Last Word on the Annual Conference in Kansas City
Attire and Temperature. Kansas City’s average daytime temperatures in late September range in the mid-70s to the low 80s; nighttime temperatures are in the mid-50s to low 60s. September is also normally a relatively dry month for KC, but it’s always a good idea to be prepared for the occasional shower. Casual attire is the norm for sessions, tours, and most ticketed evening events. Only a few of the finest restaurants require coat and tie; otherwise, relax and be informal.
Hotel Reservations. The ICMA conference housing bureau closed on September 15. To make a new reservation, use online hotel booking sites or contact the conference hotels directly using the telephone numbers listed at the end of this article. Although guaranteed conference rates may no longer be honored, rooms may be available as a result of cancellations. Contact hotels directly to make changes and cancellations.

Getting Around in KC. Downtown hotels are approximately 19 miles from Kansas City International Airport (MCI). Conference hotels do not offer airport shuttles. Taxi fare from the airport to downtown is approximately $50. Alternatives include the SuperShuttle ($18 per person each way) or the city bus ($1.50 fare one-way). You must reserve the SuperShuttle online or by calling 1-800-243-6383 or 1-816-243-5000.

All downtown conference hotels are within walking distance of the Kansas City Convention Center, where most conference sessions and events will take place. Beginning on Saturday, September 24, daily shuttle bus service to the convention center is available from conference hotels that are more than four blocks away. Refer to shuttle bus schedules posted in hotel lobbies. Guests at the Sheraton and Westin Hotels at Crown Center are encouraged to use the free Ride KC Streetcar, which stops at nearby Union Station and three blocks from the convention center. See individual entries in the final program booklet for details about special event busing offered for evening and sporting events.


Location of Conference Sessions and Events. Located at 301 W. 13th Street in downtown Kansas City, Missouri, the Kansas City Convention Center is the site for most ICMA conference activities. The Monday evening state/alumni/affiliate receptions and a number of other meetings/events will be held at the Kansas City Marriott Downtown Hotel, which is one block away from the convention center.
Registration. The conference registration area is located in Lobby 2300 on Level 2 of the convention center. Registration hours are Saturday and Sunday, 8 a.m.−6 p.m., and Monday and Tuesday, 8 a.m.−5 p.m. All conference participants (members, nonmembers, partners, children, guests) must register and wear badges for admission to sessions, exhibits, and partners’ events. Full payment of conference fees must be received by the time you pick up your registration materials. All mail-in registrations received by ICMA after September 8 will be treated as an on-site registration. Online registration will be available until September 19, using Visa, MasterCard, or American Express for payment.

If you are registered for an ICMA University workshop on Saturday morning (8:30 a.m.–noon), it is not necessary to pick up your conference registration materials first. Instead, you may go directly to the workshops’ central registration area located outside Meeting Room 2213 on Level 2 of the convention center for room assignments and workshop materials.

Registration Cancellations
Those who registered for the conference but are unable to attend should send cancellation notices in writing to ICMA by September 19. There is a $75 processing fee for the refund of conference registration fees and an additional $35 fee for ICMA University workshop cancellations. Requests for evening social event and field demo ticket refunds also must be received in writing by September 19. No ticket refunds will be given onsite. After the conference, ICMA will process refunds for registration and ticket cancellations that were submitted in writing by the deadlines.
Tours. The deadline for requests to Wellington for tour refunds was September 10. Tickets may still be available for sale at the company’s desk located near registration in the Lobby 2300 on Level 2 of the convention center. All tours will depart from and return to the ICMA bus stop outside the Lobby 2100 entrance. Tour participants should arrive 10 minutes prior to departure.
 Saturday Evening Reception If you plan to attend the “18th and Vine Block Party” reception on Saturday, September 24, 5:30–7:30 p.m., stop by the registration area first to pick up your registration packet containing your event ticket. Buses will depart at 5:30 p.m. from the ICMA bus stop outside Lobby 2100 entrance of the convention center. Each guest will be provided with a wristband that will identify them as an ICMA partygoer and can be used after the party for free admission to the Blue Room Jazz Club.

 Opening Session


Welcoming Reception

The Opening General Session will take place at 3–5 p.m. on Sunday, September 25, in Hall D on Level 3 of the Kansas City Convention Center. The “Taste of KC” Welcoming Reception will follow immediately at 5–7 p.m. in Exhibit Hall E, also on Level 3.

During the reception, Opening Session keynote speaker Soledad O’Brien will sign copies of her book in the ICMA Pavilion. Please note that books by keynoter speakers will be available for purchase only at the registration area in Lobby 2300; no books are being sold inside the Pavilion, where the signings take place.


News and updates. Look for the Stay Connected news brief in your conference registration bag. In support of ICMA’s commitment to sustainability, Stay Connected is going paperless after Sunday’s edition with news and updates available through a variety of digital communication vehicles:

When you pick up your registration materials, you will be asked if you need a copy of the printed Final Program. If using the app will suffice for you to navigate the conference, please decline a Final Program in support of ICMA’s commitment to sustainability.

Internet Access. Free wireless Internet sponsored by BoardDocs is available in the Kansas City Convention Center. The network name will pop up as ICMACONFERENCE2016. Use password: ICMA2016. The conference Internet Express centers, which are also sponsored by BoardDocs, are located in the convention center’s Lobby 2300 and in Exhibit Hall E (Level 3). There will be no printed copies of session handouts and presentations, but you can print those that you need using printers at the Internet Express stations.
  New this year, the Host Committee is organizing an opportunity for conference attendees to donate personal care products—basic items not covered by government assistance programs—to people in need in the Kansas City area through a local nonprofit, Giving the Basics. Visit this article on the conference website for information on how you can help, including dropping extra toiletry items in collection bins at a number of the conference hotels, as well as near the registration desk.
Hotel Phone Numbers
Kansas City Marriott Downtown 816-421-6800
AC Hotel Kansas City Westport 816-931-0001
Courtyard Marriott Downtown/KCCC 816-221-7400
Crowne Plaza Kansas City Downtown 816-474-6664
Fairfield Inn KC−Downtown/Union Hill 816-931-5700
Hilton President 816-221-9490
Holiday Inn KC Downtown−Aladdin 816-421-8888
Hotel Phillips 816-221-7000
Residence Inn Downtown/KCCC 816-221-1400
Sheraton Kansas City at Crown Center 816-841-1000
Sheraton Suites Country Club Plaza 816-931-5700
Westin Kansas City at Crown Center 816-474-4400

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