Welcome to the Meeting and Event Planning Guide to Temple, a city guide for meeting professionals. Offering the best of both worlds with its conveniences of big-city dwelling and small-town atmosphere, Temple conveniently sits along the Central Texas technology corridor, with San Antonio and Austin to the south and Dallas/Fort Worth to the north. Temple is known for its solid economic foundation and strong manufacturing, medical services, and education fields, and continues to see unprecedented growth in its business sector. Meeting planners choose Temple for its convenient Central Texas location, range of attractions, strong economy, and first-class meeting facilities for large or small events.
Temple serves as a transportation hub along I-35, being within three hours of Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio, as well as three hours from 88 % of the state's population. Killeen/Fort Hood Regional Airport and Waco Regional Airport are both nearby, but Temple also sits within 150 miles of both San Antonio International Airport and Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport. San Antonio International Airport provides commercial air service for the South Texas region, carrying more than 8 million passengers each year to 30 nonstop domestic and international destinations, while Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport provides service to more than 200 worldwide destinations. As an American Airlines hub, the five-terminal, 165-gate Dallas/Fort Worth International ranks third in operations and ninth in passengers worldwide. Meeting delegates can travel throughout Temple aboard Hill Country Transit District's HOP service, which runs three fixed routes throughout Temple from Monday through Saturday.
Temple's meeting facilities include the Frank W. Mayborn Civic & Convention Center, which offers 40,000 square feet of meeting space. Reopened in 2010 after a six-month renovation, the center accommodates meetings, trade shows, and banquets in such spaces as its 18,620-square-foot Main Hall. Aside from its Frank W. Mayborn Civil & Convention Center, the Temple area also features the 150,000-square-foot Bell County Expo Center. This facility offers a selection of meeting rooms that can each be configured to suit a variety of event needs. Its versatility makes the Bell County Expo Center Central Texas' best entertainment arena. The Temple area is also home to a number of unique venues, ranging from a restored railroad depot to the first official Texas state park. Housed in the restored 1910 Santa Fe Depot, and featuring a working Amtrak station, the Temple Railroad and Heritage Museum preserves and exhibits local railroad and Central Texas history. Groups can tour the museum's telegraph room, exhibits, locomotives, passenger cars, and cabooses, as well as hold private events in its sprawling lobby and outdoor gazebo. Groups can also tour Temple's Bell County Museum, which serves as a vital resource for the collection, interpretation, and preservation of Bell County heritage. Showcasing more than 12,000 objects related to the Central Texas region, as well as a restored 1850s log cabin, the museum also features a second-floor auditorium available for private rentals.
For a unique design experience, groups can tour the Wilson House, which is one of the best residential examples of mid-century modern style in Texas. This National Register of Historic Places-listed home is outfitted with a variety of interior laminate uses, and served as the home of Ralph Wilson Sr., the founder of Wilsonart International, as well as a model home for the laminate company. Groups can enjoy the great outdoors at Mother Neff State Park, located about 30 minutes outside of Temple in nearby Moody. As the first official state park in Texas, Mother Neff State Park welcomes guests to camp, hike, picnic, and fish, as well as gather in such facilities as its Group Primitive Area, Group Recreation Hall, and three Group Picnic Pavilions. Last but not least, Temple's Cultural Activities Center serves as Central Texas' premier visual and performing arts center, as well as a special event venue with 12,000 square feet of meeting and event space. At the Cultural Activities Center, located directly adjacent to the Mayborn Convention Center, groups can take in a performance, tour its four art galleries, hold an event in the 500-person auditorium or landscaped courtyard, or participate in such corporate team-building activities as self-portrait mask, glass fusing, and team sculpture workshops.