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DNC: Will There Be Space for Everyone?

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The Rocky Mountain News reports there may not be enough hotel rooms to satisfy media demand at the Democratic Convention in Denver in August and that journalists may get grumpy if they don’t get placed at hotels that meet with their expectations, which could result in bad press for Denver.

I don’t think it’s time to call in Henny Penny to tell us the sky is falling. On a conference call with bloggers Tuesday, the DNCC said while its allotment of rooms is spoken for, if requests are made this week, they’d try to hook people up with available rooms. The request form is here. The Rocky is probably right that some hotels are holding back, knowing they can charge more money later. But, there are plenty of homeowners renting out their homes, condos and lofts all over the metro area — just check Craig’s List. There’s everything from a 7,000 sq. ft. Cherry Hills mansion at $2,000 a night that includes a personal driver, to a 1,000 sq. ft. Riverfront condo at $750 a night.

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In 2004 in Boston, there were hordes of residents who fled downtown for convention week, believing the media reports that it would be a nightmare. It really wasn’t. Since bloggers weren’t credentialed until shortly before the convention, we were on our own for hotel rooms. I was able to get good ones, but only for one night each. As a result, I moved every day at checkout time from one Boston suburb to another, before heading to the convention center. I spent a lot on taxis, but never saw the predicted gridlock that was supposed to grind the city to a halt. I don’t think it will happen in Denver either — and I think Denver’s transit system, between buses and light rail, will make staying outside of downtown no big deal.

That got me thinking of how the DNC could project a positive, welcoming image for Denver, one that would give people a sense of our city and community and perhaps draw more people to visit. As I was pondering this, I was checking out You Tube for video of last night’s Bon Jovi concert that I wasn’t able to attend. I came across the JoviColoContest Channel where fans were to make videos of their cities to accompany Bon Jovi’s song, “I Love This Town.”

Here are two worthy Denver entries….I think the DNCC should take a look. Who could hold a hotel room against us when we have all this to offer?

Come to think of it, maybe they should try to book Bon Jovi for the convention and get the band’s permission to use “I Love This Town” as the welcoming theme song.

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