VisitGainesville and the Alachua County Hospitality Council Celebrate National Travel and Tourism Week!

VisitGainesville and the Alachua County Hospitality Council celebrated the 22nd Annual Bed Making Contest, on Monday, May 4th, 2015, in which 12 hotel housekeepers representing six Alachua County lodging properties competed to make the fastest, neatest bed! Hosted by VisitGainesville at the Paramount Plaza Hotel & Suites, the event has become a fun tradition here in Alachua County and a way to recognize and thank the housekeepers for the role they play in our tourism success story.

Bedmaking 2015

Congratulations to our winners:

2015 Bed Making Winners:
1st place- Alma Shallis-UF Hilton
2nd place-Danielle Louks-Best Western (last year's 1st place winner)
3rd place-Velkis Padilla-Hampton Inn I75
Spirit Award: Springhill Suites

And a BIG thank you to all of our participating hotels! We appreciate your continued enthusiasm for this event!

Our celebration continued Wednesday, May 6th, 2015 with our annual Tourism Week Luncheon and Awards Ceremony. VisitGainesville and the Alachua County Hospitality Council recognized two outstanding individuals in the tourism industry for their dedication to customer service:

Abdinur Abdi-UF Hilton
Lorna Bouret-Reitz Union Hotel
Marcia Teague-Springhill Suites

Thank you so much to everyone who participated in the luncheon! We are thrilled to have had a record turnout for the event and appreciate all of our wonderful tourism partners.

Looking forward to another successful Tourism Week in 2016!

About the Alachua County Hospitality Council

The Alachua County Hospitality Council is a non-profit organization comprised of local and regional hospitality professionals dedicated to promoting, protecting, preserving, and enhancing those characteristics that make our unique North Central Florida community interesting, memorable, and attractive; benefiting both economic health and quality of life in the community.

Hospitality Council meets the first Wednesday of every month at various locations throughout the county. Contact Megan Eckdahl, President, to be added to the meeting notice list and recieve Hospitality Council updates, or feel free to visit the website at

The current Hospitality Council Board is as follows:

Megan Eckdahl
Hospitality Council President, Board Member since 2012

Sean Plemons

Hospitality Council Vice President,Board Member since 2014

Tony Trusty

Hospitality Council Treasurer,Board Member since 2014

Raymond Francois

Hospitality Council Secretary,Board Member since 2012

Kailey New

Hospitality Council Community Liason