There has been a great deal of activity within GTOA since we last talked. By now many of you may have heard that the executive board has elected to move the GTOA annual conference from Macon to Columbus. Let me begin by offering our extreme gratitude to the Bibb County Sheriff’s Office. This agency has been a tireless host and has consistently offered every resource imaginable. We especially thank Captain Dave Freeland for his unwavering support. Captain Freeland has offered his support and shown forward leaning initiative in so many areas that it is difficult to accurately thank him. With that said, moving from Macon has been an extremely difficult decision.
A major factor in the decision to relocate the GTOA conference for 2018 was the opportunity for more training options. The Bibb County range has been a perfect location for us to conduct training, but one of the factors we continue to hear about is the request for GTOA to provide more options during the conference specifically related to weapons training. As a result we have located a facility near Columbus called National Security Associates. At this location we will have the ability to offer a more broad variety of course. We are excited to make use of National Security Associates’ 6,000 square foot shoot house. I encourage you to take a look at their web site and see firsthand some of the facilities that we will be using.
We have identified a new hotel to call home for the conference. The board has established a fantastic relationship with the Uptown Marriott in Columbus . They have granted us per diem rate and our link is ready for reservations. This is a great location and is directly across the street from the Iron Works. We will be using this location for several events including our vendor show and Tuesday evening banquet.
The conference relocation presents some unique challenges. Among them is how to keep the conference organization similar to what we have all grown accustomed. I believe that as we move forward you will see differences, but also a great deal of experiences that will feel similar. We will provide you with the details as we move forward. Scheduling based around the new facilities is requiring us to re-think the organization of the conference, and we are also attempting to add some events to provide more opportunities for everyone. As this becomes more concrete we will keep you informed.
Very soon you will see the opportunity to begin registering for the conference. This will include the option for you to begin selecting your choice of training opportunities. On behalf of the board I am asking that each of you consider registering early. Accurate numbers of how many will be attending is a significant factor in our planning.
Looking forward to seeing you in Columbus! March 11-14 2018!