NewsNet 01-23-15

TUCSON LANDS NATIONAL CONVENTION FOR FESTIVAL AND EVENTS - Tucson has been selected as the site of the 60th anniversary of the national convention of the International Festival and Events Association (IFEA). The IFEA Convention & Expo will be held at the JW Marriott Tucson Starr Pass Resort & Spa from September 21-23.  IFEA describes itself as “the premier association supporting and enabling festival and event professionals worldwide.” The annual IFEA convention draws representatives from such major events as Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, Kentucky Derby Festival, The Olympic Games, Tournament of Roses Parade and Bowl, and more. The Festival Event Association of Tucson and Southern Arizona (FEATSAZ) and Visit Tucson collaborated with the Downtown Tucson Partnership, Main Gate Square, and Fourth Avenue Merchants Association on the convention bid. Organizers say the 2015 IFEA Convention & Expo represents 865 room nights, close to $250,000 in economic impact for Tucson, and is expected to draw an estimated 500 attendees from across the globe for professional education and networking.

REID PARK ZOO TO GO ON SAFARI - Reid Park Zoo officials are organizing a hosted tour of Johannesburg, Swaziland, and Kruger. The Zoo’s adult African elephants trace their roots to South Africa and Swaziland. The safari, from May 31-June 13, will be a blend of wildlife and culture. The trip is open to the paying public and will include visits to several wildlife conservation areas, exploring different habitats and viewing a diverse array of wildlife. The trek to Swaziland includes a visit to the Hlane Royal National Park, home to the largest herds of wildlife in the Swazi Kingdom. In addition to wildlife viewing, the safari will explore the culture of South Africa, with visits to the Apartheid Museum and other sites within Johannesburg, including trips to the Johannesburg Zoo and the National Zoo of South Africa in Pretoria.

DILLINGER DAYS TONIGHT AND TOMORROW IN DOWNTOWN TUCSON - The annual Dillinger Days returns to Hotel Congress in Downtown Tucson to mark the time in 1934 when the Tucson Police Department captured and arrested John Dillinger, who was the most wanted outlaw at the time. The celebration begins tonight at 7 o'clock with a fundraiser for the Greater Tucson Fire Foundation. The family-friendly event begins at 9 a.m. tomorrow at Hotel Congress, complete with reenactments of the historic capture. Actors dress in period garb and drive vintage cars to make the scenes realistic. Read more from Downtown Tucson Partnership.

PRIMAVERA TO HIRE TEMPORARY WORKERS FOR GEM SHOW - Primavera Works is hiring low-income and homeless people to help clean up the city during the Tucson Gem, Mineral & Fossil Showcase, Feb. 1-17. Workers will be paid above minimum wage to pick up trash along the I-10 corridor and perform janitorial duties at the Tucson Convention Center. Shifts will be eight hours long. For more information, call Primavera Works at (520) 882-9668. Read more from Tucson News Now.

CHANGE BATTERIES IN SMOKE ALARMS AT LEAST ONCE A YEAR - Smoke alarms are crucial to any fire escape plan, but they do require attention to help you in a fire. Tucson Fire Department Captain Barrett Baker offers some tips on your existing smoke alarms and where to locate new ones.