Wednesday, March 2, 2011

OI Annual Convention Invitation

Hello Fellow Optimists,

The Optimists in the Maryland/South Delaware District are looking forward to seeing all of you and the members in your Districts at the 2011 OI Convention in Baltimore, Maryland, on July 3, 4, & 5, 2011, at the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront Hotel on the Inner Harbor in Downtown Baltimore.

Here are some online links where you can find additional information:
Here are some answers to questions we have received:

1.  What is there to do in Baltimore?  The best way to find out is to go to and check out everything the city has to offer.

2.  What is the closest airport to the convention hotel?  Baltimore Washington International (BWI). Check out the airport's web site at   It's a short shuttle ride (15-20 minutes) from the airport to the hotel.

3.  We're coming by train.  What is the closest train station to the convention hotel?  Penn Station in Baltimore.
It's just a 10 minute cab ride from the hotel.  See the notes on the OI web site about discounts that Amtrak is offering.

4.  We're thinking about bringing our kids and/or our grandchildren to the convention.  Will there be anything for them to do? You can register them to participate in the youth program.  On Sunday afternoon they be going out on the harbor with the Urban Pirates; Sunday evening they'll have dinner and then participate in games, crafts, and a magic show; Monday--they'll visit the Maryland Science Center and the National Aquarium at Baltimore and in the evening they'll have dinner, participate in group activities and watch the July 4 Fireworks on the Harbor; and on Tuesday they'll spend the day at the Baltimore Zoo.  It will definitely a fun time for them.

5.  Will we be able to go to a baseball game like we did in Denver?  The Baltimore Orioles will be out of town during the Convention, but they are playing the St. Louis Cardinals on Thursday evening, June 30, 2011.  We will have tickets for that game beginning in January.  Yes, that June 30 is early, but you can arrive on Thursday, go to the game on Thursday evening and then do some sightseeing in the Baltimore area on Friday and Saturday before the convention begins on Sunday.

6.  Does the Host Area Committee need any volunteers to assist at the Convention?  Yes, we would  be happy to have some convention attendees volunteer to assist us.  Here are some things you could do:
a.  Volunteer to assist at the Registration Booth for a couple of hours on Sunday and/or Monday
b.  Serve as a hostess/hostess at the Appreciation Luncheon on Monday.  You must purchase a ticket for the luncheon in order to do this.  It's fun and we'll show you what to do.
c.  Volunteer to be a chaperon at some of the youth activities.  Chaperons must be over 18 and be an OI member or spouse of a member.

7.  Does the Host Area Committee need an financial assistance?  Yes, additional funds are welcome.  We do have an opportunity for both individuals and/or clubs to make a donation to support the Host Area Committee.  All individuals who make a donation of $25 (US) or more will receive a certificate and all Clubs that make a donation of $50 (US) or more will receive a Host Area Committee Sponsor banner patch.  Names of all sponsors will be listed in the OI Convention Program.  See flyer for more information.

We hope you find this information helpful.  Please feel free to share it with clubs and members in your Districts.

If you have questions and/or would like additional information about Baltimore and the surrounding area, "Just Ask!" and we'll be happy to assist you. 

Ronda Vaughn, OI Director of Meeting Services, and Sharon Parton, OI Meetings and Travel manager, will be happy to assist you with specific Convention questions. You can contact them at 800-500-8130.

Have a GRREEAATT and Optimistic Holiday Season and New Year!  We'll see you in Baltimore!

Dennis Lane, Host Area Committee Chair
2011 OI Convention
410-592-2574, 410-592-7067


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