MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Sure it’s been cold in Minneapolis this winter. Okay, really cold.

But move over Miami. The good old “City of Lakes” could very well take the award for “Best Convention City,” according to USA Today.

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Melvin Tennant, CEO of “Meet Minneapolis” – the city’s official convention and visitors association – says it should be no surprise that Minneapolis is in the running. The city has a booming downtown that’s just too big of an attraction for meeting and even planners to ignore.

“I always ask myself and ask our teammates, ‘Why is it that some cities seem to get a free pass with the cold weather?'” Tennant said. “We think that over time, people are beginning to really understand that we’re a top tier destination.”

Minneapolis also has an airport that offers several direct flights, and world-class convention facilities.

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“Almost 90 meeting rooms, so people can do a lot of meetings, a great ballroom, and it’s very, very well appointed,” he said.

Tennant says this year in particular has been a banner year for headliner events.

“It’s going to be a huge year for us,” he said.

Those events include the Girls’ Junior National Championships for volleyball and the National Collegiate Hockey Conference Championships.

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“Meet Minneapolis” says a win in this category would really help to further Minneapolis’ stand-out reputation, it would get meeting and event planners here to scope the city out and it would help give a boost to the local economy.