From the desk of Dave Yusz, Bayfront Convention Center Building and Grounds Superintendent:
What an exciting convention season! The National Fireworks Association held the 2017 NFA Expo at our facility in September. The event brought people to Erie from around the globe! Large conventions, such as these, have a lot of moving pieces, not only during the show, but before they arrive. Prior to their arrival, dates and times are determined, displays and goods are shipped in, room and floor layouts are detailed, food and beverage menues are selected, power/internet/telephony needs are determined, and staffing requirements are decided. When I stop and think about everything that happens between the booking of a convention to show day, I am truly in awe.
Facility maintenance and improvement are an ongoing part of this job. During convention season, the operations crew has to run three shifts to keep up. During the slower season, major projects are completed because there are less restrictions. This year, new ovens and other equipment were installed in the kitchen. Also, new carpet was installed in the ballroom along with replacing the lighting system to take advantage of energy savings. At times, keeping up with everything seems daunting, but I love the challenge!