Leisure Systems Inc. (LSI) is slightly modifying its traditional symposium to accommodate the changing needs and desires of its nearly 80 Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park franchisees.

Woodall’s Campground Management reported that the traditional gathering, set for Nov. 5-8 at the Embassy Suites and the Northern Kentucky Convention Center in Covington, Ky., has been shortened by one day, without reducing the number of educational seminars offered to its franchisees.

An outside keynote speaker also has been dropped.

The modification, we’re told, comes amid an industrywide re-examination of the convention concept, which has lost traction in many locales, notably the state of California where the state association has canceled all conventions until further notice.

Leisure Systems sees the symposium as a type of season-ending thank you to its franchisees and decided to shorten it by a day to help reduce expenses for its franchisees. “Everybody is watching their expenses closely,” said Dean Crawford, executive vice president. “We opted to shorten by one day and will probably stay that way.”

The symposium will start on a Monday and end on Thursday night.

“It’s always a good gathering. Everybody works hard through the summer and I know our franchisees look forward to coming to this convention and talking with other operators. It’s kind of a reward after a busy season,” Crawford said.

Accordingly, this year’s symposium will still feature educational seminars, a trade show, an in-depth look at company and franchisee operations by President Rob Schutter on Tuesday morning and a concluding awards banquet. The symposium is also when franchisees view new Yogi Bear-branded merchandise and order this merchandise for the coming season.

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