2017 NATJA Conference Schedule

Below you will find the NATJA Conference schedule for the 2017 conference in Chapel Hill/Orange County, North Carolina.

Please note that the schedule is subject to change.

Updated: May 1, 2017

Tuesday, May 16 

Pre-conference press trip attendees begin to arrive. 

9:00 am NATJA Conference Check-In Begins
Location: Front Lobby
10:30 am - 12:30pm NATJA Advisory Board Meeting
Location:
Board Room
12:00 pm - 1:00pm Lunch & Opening General Session
Location:
Venetian Room (3rd Floor)
1:00 pm - 2:30pm Opening General Session
Location:
Venetian Room (3rd Floor)
NATJA and the Chapel Hill/Orange County Convention & Visitors Bureau welcome attendees to the 15th Annual NATJA Conference. NATJA Awards Competition winners and finalists will be recognized and celebrated. Our keynote and guest speakers will take the stage. 
2:30 pm - 2:45 pm Break
Location:
1st Floor Lobby (behind the Front Desk)
Coffee and water are available for your refreshment
2:45 pm - 4:00 pm

Professional Development Workshops: Session 1

All professional development sessions will take place on the 1st floor, behind the hotel’s Front Desk.

Knowing Your Social Media Legal Rights
Meeting Room:
Amsterdam Room
Presenter: Amanda Martin, Communications Lawyer, Stevens Martin Vaughn & Tadych
Learn the legal aspects of social media. What rights do journalists have to get recognition for their work in the digital and social sphere? For DMOs, what should you know before sharing or using others’ content?

Photo and Videojournalism on Your Smartphone: Tips, Tricks and Mistakes to Avoid
Meeting Room:
London Room
Presenter: Jock Lauterer, Senior Lecturer & Director, Carolina Community Media Project, University of North Carolina School
Your smartphone can be one of your most powerful tools for photo and video journalism. Learn how to use it to its fullest potential!

Tips and Tricks on Creating Your Destination Video
Meeting Room: Paris Room
Presenters: Nando Grancelli, award-winning videographer and producer; Yanira Leon, Director of Operations, NATJA
In this interactive workshop, destinations will learn what it takes to craft an appealing story about your destination through a short video to share with the world – on your website, social media networks, and more. This workshop will take you from concept to finished product!

4:00 pm - 4:15 pm Break
Location: 1st Floor Lobby (behind the Front Desk)
Coffee, water and snacks are available for your refreshment
4:15 pm - 5:30 pm

Professional Development Workshops: Session 2

All professional development sessions will take place on the 1st floor, behind the hotel’s Front Desk.

Knowing Your Social Media Legal Rights
Meeting Room: Amsterdam Room
Presenter: Amanda Martin, Communications Lawyer, Stevens Martin Vaughn & Tadych
Learn the legal aspects of social media. What rights do journalists have to get recognition for their work in the digital and social sphere? For DMOs, what should you know before sharing or using others’ content?

Photo and Videojournalism on Your Smartphone: Tips, Tricks and Mistakes to Avoid
Meeting Room:
London Room
Presenter: Jock Lauterer, Senior Lecturer & Director, Carolina Community Media Project, University of North Carolina School
Your smartphone can be one of your most powerful tools for photo and video journalism. Learn how to use it to its fullest potential!

Tips and Tricks on Creating Your Destination Video
Meeting Room: Paris Room
Presenters: Nando Grancelli, award-winning videographer and producer; Yanira Leon, Director of Operations, NATJA
In this interactive workshop, destinations will learn what it takes to craft an appealing story about your destination through a short video to share with the world – on your website, social media networks, and more. This workshop will take you from concept to finished product!

5:00 pm NATJA Registration Closes
5:30 pm Professional Development Sessions End
You will have a break before departing for the evening’s activities.
6:30 pm Meet to Depart for Barn of Valhalla
Meeting Location: Front Lobby
Please arrive promptly or you may miss the bus!
6:45 pm Opening Night Dinner
Location: Barn of Valhalla
Attire: Casual
Kick off your first night of the NATJA Conference with finger-lickin’ good BBQ from the Hillsborough BBQ Company and wash it all down with samples from seven local craft breweries. Take a scenic walk down to the gazebo over the pond and take in the art from local artists and simply enjoy an evening filled with music, and performances.
8:30 pm Return to Hotel
Last bus leaves at 9:30pm. Attendees who miss the last bus will be on their own for transportation back to the hotel.

Wednesday, May 17

7:30 am Breakfast
Location:
Venetian Room (3rd Floor)
Breakfast buffet and omelet station will be available before the beginning of the General Assembly.
8:00 am - 9:30am

General Assembly
Location: Venetian Room (same as Breakfast)

Join us as we welcome local expert DG Martin who will give us the insider’s scoop on Orange County, NC. Then sit in for a special panel on book publishing with UNC Press.

Welcome to North Carolina!
Travelers’ Favorite Haunts: From Local Restaurants and Diners to Barbecue Joints

Speaker: DG Martin

DG Martin is well-versed on North Carolina literature, history, politics, sports, and the best place to get a good meal. Martin has spent years traveling the major roadways of North Carolina, on the lookout for community, local history, and, of course, a good home-cooked meal. In DG’s address to NATJA, he will provide an overview of what makes North Carolina unique: from its colonial beginnings, fierce fight for independence, the decision to put the nation’s first public University in Chapel Hill and the communities’ ongoing respect for individualism. DG will provide members of the group a colorful description of NC notable local roadway haunts that serve not only as places to eat but also as fixtures of their communities.

What Every Author Needs to Know about Working with a Publishing House

Moderator: Laurie Paolicelli, Executive Director, Chapel Hill/Orange County Visitors Bureau
Author Panelists: Daniel Wallace, DG Martin, Georgann Eubanks, Sheri Castle
Publisher Panelist: Lucas Church, Associate Editor, UNC Press

Why do so many of us who live in this day of 140 - character tweets, still want to write a book? The answer varies. But regardless of the success of any book, most authors agree that publishing a book cannot be done successfully without the “middlemen,” or the publishing house that helps assure publication, editing, distribution and promotion. It’s these middlemen that bring-on the revenues and audiences, and there continues to be a demand for books of all genres. On a local level, in a college town like Chapel Hill, publishing is a critical part of academia. Local publisher, UNC Press together with four local authors will talk about the challenges and rewards of book publishing in 2017.

The University of North Carolina Press in 1922 was the first university press in the South and one of the first in the nation. Nationally, university-related and independent presses remain committed to both digital formats and printed books. Sales figures aside, printed books are still the preferred format of 65 percent of book readers in the U.S. UNC Press publishes about 100 titles per year over the course of two seasons – fall and spring.
9:30 am - 9:40 am Break
Location:
1st Floor Lobby (behind the Front Desk)
Coffee and water are available for your refreshment
9:40 am - 10:55 am

Professional Development Workshops: Session 3

All professional development sessions will take place on the 1st floor, behind the hotel’s Front Desk.

The Branding of Me, Building and Maintaining a Personal Brand Online
Meeting Room: Amsterdam Room
Presenter: Gary Kayye, Adjunct Professor, University of North Carolina School of Media & Journalism
Building and maintaining a personal brand online is vital in today’s world. Stay in the loop on the key tools for building your brand.

Tips for Writing on Social Media to Grow Your Audience
Meeting Room:
London Room
Presenter: Joe Bob Hester, Associate Professor, University of North Carolina School of Media & Journalism
Get insight on how crafting the right message for social media can attract more visitors to your content while also improving your search engine optimization (SEO) for better ranking on search engines such as Google.

How Being an Award-Winner Can Enhance Your Brand
Meeting Room:
Paris Room
Moderator: Helen Hernandez, CEO, NATJA
Panelists
: Tamra Jane Corbin, Media Relations Manager, Branson Convention & Visitors Bureau; Tonya Fitzpatrick, journalist, lawyer and author, World Footprints Media; Tim Leffel, author, freelance writer, and editor/blogger, Cheapest Destinations Blog and Perceptive Travel; Don Mankin, travel writer and author, Adventure Transformations; and Gustavo Rivas-Solis, Director, Latitude
Whether you’re a travel journalist or a destination, winning an award can be a tool to enhance your brand. Learn from recent NATJA Award Winners how submitting and placing in competitions can boost a travel journalist’s or destination’s public profile.

10:55 am - 11:05 am Break
Location:
1st Floor Lobby (behind the Front Desk)
Coffee, water and snacks are available for your refreshment
11:05 am - 12:20 pm

Professional Development Workshops: Session 4

All professional development sessions will take place on the 1st floor, behind the hotel’s Front Desk.

The Branding of Me, Building and Maintaining a Personal Brand Online
Meeting Room: Amsterdam Room
Presenter: Gary Kayye, Adjunct Professor, University of North Carolina School of Media & Journalism
Building and maintaining a personal brand online is vital in today’s world. Stay in the loop on the key tools for building your brand.

Tips for Writing on Social Media to Grow Your Audience
Meeting Room:
London Room
Presenter: Joe Bob Hester, Associate Professor, University of North Carolina School of Media & Journalism
Get insight on how crafting the right message for social media can attract more visitors to your content while also improving your search engine optimization (SEO) for better ranking on search engines such as Google.

How Being an Award-Winner Can Enhance Your Brand
Meeting Room:
Paris Room
Moderator: Helen Hernandez, CEO, NATJA
Panelists
: Tamra Jane Corbin, Media Relations Manager, Branson Convention & Visitors Bureau; Tonya Fitzpatrick, journalist, lawyer and author, World Footprints Media; Tim Leffel, author, freelance writer, and editor/blogger, Cheapest Destinations Blog and Perceptive Travel; Don Mankin, travel writer and author, Adventure Transformations; and Gustavo Rivas-Solis, Director, Latitude International
Whether you’re a travel journalist or a destination, winning an award can be a tool to enhance your brand. Learn from recent NATJA Award Winners how submitting and placing in competitions can boost a travel journalist’s or destination’s public profile.

12:20 pm Professional Development Ends
You will have an opportunity to return to your room and prepare for your afternoon activity.
12:50 pm Meet to Depart for Afternoon Tours
Meeting Location: Front Lobby
Depart for your afternoon tour. Make sure that you are on the right bus: Check the back of your badge for your Wednesday Tour.
1:00 pm - 5:00 pm Afternoon Tours
Click here to view each tour's full description.
  • Option 1: Carolina on My Mind
  • Option 2: Discover Hillsborough, NC
  • Option 3: Orange County Farm Tour
  • Option 4: Explore Chapel Hill
  • Option 5: Feel Free, It's Carrboro
  • Option 6: Downtime on Your Own
5:00 pm Return to Hotel/Downtime

Attendees begin to arrive back at the Sheraton Chapel Hill from the afternoon tours. You will have the opportunity to freshen up before heading out for the evening’s activities.

6:15 pm Meet to Depart for Dine Around
Meeting Location: Front Lobby
Please arrive promptly or you may miss the bus!
6:30 pm Dine Around
Location: Various

From traditional Southern cuisine to Indian, Greek, to Asian fusion and more, there is a restaurant for everyone! Click here to view the full list of restaurant choices from which you can select!

Check the label on the back of your badge for the name of the restaurant you selected as your Dine-Around option. The Chapel Hill/Orange County CVB has put together a cool list of places to hang out after dinner! Click here to check it out.

8:30 pm Return to Hotel
Buses will run until 9:30pm to take attendees back to the Sheraton Chapel Hill. Meet at your designated pick up spot. If you miss the last bus, you will be on your own for transportation back to the hotel.

Thursday, May 18

6:30 am - 10:30 am Breakfast
Location: Carolina 1663 (take the elevator behind the front lobby to the 2nd floor; the restaurant will be on the right)
Breakfast will be available from 6:30am to 10:30am at the hotel restaurant. Please be sure to bring the voucher you received at check-in.
7:00 am - 8:30 am

Marketplace Setup for Exhibitors
Location: Europa Ballroom (1st floor behind the Front Desk)

Look for the table with your organization’s name or find a NATJA Staff member to assist you to your table.

8:30 am - 11:30 am

Exhibitor Marketplace
Location: Europa Ballroom (1st floor behind the Front Desk)

Media and destination marketing organizations meet for one-on-one chats. Make sure to bring your business cards!

11:30 am - 12:50 pm

Break/Downtime
Take some time to relax and get ready for your afternoon tour!

12:50 pm Meet to Depart for Afternoon Tours
Meeting Location: Sheraton Chapel Hill Front Lobby
Depart for your afternoon tour. Make sure that you are on the right bus: Check the back of your badge for your Thursday Tour.
1:00 pm - 5:00 pm Afternoon Tours
Click here to view each tour's full description.
  • Option 1: Carolina on My Mind
  • Option 2: Discover Hillsborough, NC
  • Option 3: Orange County Farm Tour
  • Option 4: Explore Chapel Hill
  • Option 5: Feel Free, It's Carrboro
  • Option 6: Downtime on Your Own
5:00 pm Return to Hotel/Downtime
Attendees begin to arrive back at the Sheraton Chapel Hill from the afternoon tours. You will have the opportunity to return to your hotel room and freshen up before heading out for the evening’s activities.
6:15 pm Meet to Depart for Closing Dinner
Meeting Location: Front Lobby
Please arrive promptly or you may miss the bus!
6:30pm Closing Reception & Dinner
Location: The Carolina Inn
Attire: Business casual
Join us as we thank and bid farewell to Chapel Hill, Hillsborough and Carrboro, and find out where next year’s conference will take place!

Join us as we present the inaugural Keith Bellows Award for Excellence in Travel Journalism, as well as thank and bid farewell to Chapel Hill, Hillsborough and Carrboro, and find out where next year’s conference will take place The Carolina Inn is a beautiful and well-known icon on the UNC campus in downtown Chapel Hill that architecturally represents both the colonial and antebellum South. The 1924 design incorporates late 18th century elements from George Washington's Mount Vernon, particularly the two-story portico and cupola on the original Cameron Avenue façade, and early 19th elements from Richland, a plantation house in Louisiana. The Richland elements include the familiar hipped-gable brick end walls with integral flat double chimneys above a central demi-lune window.

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, The Carolina Inn offers an atmosphere of elegance and the spirit of tradition. Furnished with antiques, North Carolina made furniture, interesting artwork and historical images, this hotel on the UNC campus has offered guests the finest lodging, fine dining, and excellent hospitality for more than eight decades.

9:00pm Return to Hotel
Bus will take attendees back to the Sheraton Chapel Hill.

Friday, May 19

Enjoy breakfast at your leisure at the Carolina 1663 before departing the hotel. The restaurant serves breakfast from 6:30am to 10:30am.

POST-FAM TRIP DEPARTURE TIMES

Make sure you have checked out before your departure time.
Stay & Explore More in Chapel Hill & Carrboro: 9:45 am
The Crystal Coast: 10am
#OBXnow Outer Banks Immersion: 8:30 am
Meeting Location: Front Lobby

Transfers to the Airport

Meet the bus shuttles to Raleigh-Durham International Airport at the hotel entrance.