Quad Cities Convention & Visitors Bureau announces new 2016 events
A college conference basketball tournament and a St. Patrick's celebration are just a few of the exciting new happenings listed on the Quad Cities Convention & Visitors Bureau 2016 calendar.
“I think we have a very strong event calendar in the Quad Cities, and people look to us and know us for our event calendar [because] we have a lot … going on,” Jessica Waytenick, the bureau’s public relations and marketing manager, told Rock Island Today recently.
One of the most notable new events – being held in the Quad Cities for the first time -- is the Missouri Valley Conference Women’s Basketball Tournament, March 10-13. Ten colleges will compete in the Hoops in the Heartland tournament at the iWireless Center in Moline.
“This is a big thing for the entire Quad Cities area, not just downtown Moline,” Waytenick said.
The tournament has been held for the past couple of years in St. Charles, Missouri. Waytenick said the Quad Cities Convention & Visitors Bureau has been gearing up for the tournament ever since learning it would be hosting the event.
“We have been doing a lot of pre-promotion to the schools, as well as their fans so they can get introduced to the Quad Cities," she said. "This is a big move in a new arena in a new area for people to come for the weekend."
She added that Holiday Inn Rock Island and the Isle Casino in Bettendorf, Iowa are two of the fan-based hotels where the bureau has directed visitors who plan to attend the event.
Also being held during two of the same days as the basketball tournament is the St. Patrick’s Day Parade Weekend, March 11-12. The weekend kicks off with the Gathering of the Clan Luncheon on Friday, followed by the Grand Parade XXXI on Saturday. The parade begins at 23rd Street and Fourth Avenue in Rock Island, proceeds through downtown Rock Island, crosses the Mississippi River and then heads into downtown Davenport, Iowa, where a post-parade bash will be held at the River Center on East Third Street.
“This is definitely an annual occurrence that people look forward to; and since it’s going to be the same weekend as the Missouri Valley tournament, all of the fans that are coming in will be in for a treat,” Waytenick said.
A new music-related event on the calendar is Daytrotter Downs, Feb. 18-20. Independent music website Daytrotter.com is bringing in 25 to 30 breakthrough bands for a new music festival at the Adler Theatre and Daytrotter’s venue in downtown Davenport, Iowa.
Also slated to begin later this month is the fourth annual Quad Cities Restaurant Week, Feb. 29-March 6. Waytenick said almost all of the menus from the participating restaurants, including many in Rock Island, will be posted on the Quad Cities Convention & Visitors Bureau’s website by the end of the week.
“So you can walk into the restaurant knowing what you can pick from, what you are going to get, what the price is going to be," she said. "This is going to be a way to introduce a restaurant to people. And it takes the guesswork out of going out to eat."
Another performance-related, month-long event that includes music is Quad Cities Live Month, April 1-30.
“We had great success in getting over 20 local museums and historic places involved for Museum Week last June so … we thought another segment of our tourism industry would be arts and culture, and live performances,” Waytenick told Rock Island Today.
The live performances will be held at venues all around the Quad Cities, such as the District Theatre, Circa 21, The Speakeasy and The Establishment, she said.
Additionally, more than 90 events are scheduled to take place in theater, dance, comedy and music that celebrate the talents of local, national and international actors, musicians, dancers and comedians.
Another April event is the QCCA Flower and Garden Show, April 1-3, at the QCCA Expo Center in Rock Island.
“The Flower and Garden Show has shifted back a week so that it’s not held the same weekend as Easter,” Waytenick said.
The Expo Center will be transformed into a garden paradise, and visitors will be able to attend seminars and shop more than 100 vendors.
“I think everybody wants that weekend to be a warm weekend since people are going to be outside," Waytenick said. "So hopefully with El Nino this year, we have a good track record going."
See all of the bureau’s festivals and events online at: www.visitquadcities.com.
Organizations in this Story
1601 River Drive
Moline, IL 61265
1601 River Drive
Moline, IL 61265