Dr. Tom Michlowski was responsible, indirectly, for us changing venues on the event for the Fall Chess Classic.
Tom, a psychiatrist for the State of Wisconsin, set up 5 nights to stay at the Quality Inn, near other hotels and motels. When asked why he chose the Quality Inn and what he was there for, he mentioned the "chess event." Quality Inn owner Mike Jhola wanted to know that if he contacted Bob Long (me) would he consider letting this QI host the location and rooms.
The next thing you know Barry, the manager, is contacting me. He presented a compelling case for having it out there. Free conference rooms, a sales room. I already had that at my location. But, they were providing the air conditioning (if needed), the lights, and the cable service for the big screen TV.
They were willing to take their completely renovated inn from its "Heartland Inn" status and show me completely clean rooms, plenty of parking, closeness to eateries, a great staff (thank you Kay, Selecia, Jessica, Donnie, and Mays), and a hot breakfast in the morning to $72.99. I did NOT ask for any compensation so those who stayed there got a really good rate. There were a bunch of hotels/motels nearby who were half to 60% their rates, but Mike was anti-bed bug in his demeanor. And due to his diligence, he had people rate their experiences with Trip Advisor and they were #2 in the Quad-Cities. Even though the downtown Blackhawk was rated #1, the rooms were $160 and far from the Interstate.
Mike's been in the US Navy and the Hotel business for many years.
Rome wasn't built in a day (they say) but Mike wants us back next year. I shudder at the thought of arranging another event. Yet, those who came, superlative.
More people soon. I couldn't have done this event without a number of people such as Ed Reedy who helped me move stuff and set up tables. No man IS an island.