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Orlando, Florida, the city selected as thesite for NPE2012, has been rated themost-visited destination in the U.S. andis the first to host more than 50 millionvisitors annually, according to SPI: The PlasticsIndustry Trade Association, which produces the tri-ennial NPE international plastics exposition.NPE2012 will take place April 1-5, 2012, at theOrange County Convention Center (OCCC) inOrlando.Statistics released in May by the marketingorganization Visit Orlando also indicate growthfrom 2006 to 2010 in the popularity of the Orlandometropolitan area as a destination for leisure and busi-ness travel (see graph). "While SPI's decision to move NPE2012 from thelongtime NPE venue in Chicago was based primarilyon substantial economic and logistical advantages forexhibitors and visitors, the new information from VisitOrlando confirms our belief that the wealth of vaca-tion and leisure attractions in Orlando will provide anexciting added benefit for many NPE2012 partici-pants," says Gene Sanders, SPI senior vice president oftrade shows and conferences.The top rating achieved by Orlando is based ondomestic statistics developed by D.K. Shifflet &Associates, Ltd., a travel research firm, and on interna-tional travel data from the U.S. Department ofCommerce. The total number of visitors to Orlando in2010 amounted to 51.4 million, reflecting an increaseof 10.5% over the previous year. The share accountedfor by business travel (including trade shows and meet-ings) increased by 2% to 9.5 million. Internationaltravel, totaling 3.7 million visitors, was up by 12.6%. Orlando has responded to this growth by adding inexcess of 3600 hotel rooms since 2008, bringing thetotal to more than 115,000, according to VisitOrlando. The NPE2012 educational program will begin onSunday, April 1. Monday will be the first day of thefour-day trade show. will co-locate in Orlando with SPE'sANTECĀ® 2012 (April 2-4).*****Founded in 1937, SPI is the plastics industry tradeassociation representing the third largest manufactur-ing industry in the United States. SPI's member com-panies represent the entire plastics industry supplychain, including processors, machinery and equipmentmanufacturers, and raw-materials suppliers. The U.S.plastics industry employs 1.1 million workers and pro-vides nearly $379 billion in annual 26| PLASTICS ENGINEERING | OCTOBER 2011| www.4spe.orgNPE2012 Invites the Plastics Industry to Orlando,the U.S.'s "Most Visited" DestinationTwice as Nice: ANTECĀ® and NPE2012 Together produced by spi