Welcome to the meeting and event planning guide for Eugene, Oregon - a city guide written specifically with meeting planners in mind. Eugene is home to a strong arts scene, as well as a dynamic academic influence, a thriving economy, and many full-service Eugene event venues. But it also is known as Track Town USA and is an outdoors-minded, adventure-driven destination that is rich in outdoor recreation and natural beauty. Located in southern Willamette County between the Oregon Coast and Cascade Mountains, Eugene has an extensive park system and miles upon miles of running and biking trails.
Oregon's state capital, Salem, is within an hour's drive of Eugene, while Portland is about two hours away. The city is served by Eugene Airport (EUG), located 15 minutes outside the city center. EUG offers direct flights from a number of major cities, including Denver, Los Angeles, Chicago, Phoenix, Salt Lake City, Portland, San Francisco, and Seattle. Once in Eugene, transportation options include rental cars, rideshare and bikeshare services, shuttles, and the award-winning transit system, LTD.
Located on the city's fairgrounds, the expansive Lane Events Center features 75,000 square feet of exposition space. Meeting spaces include the 37,000-square-foot Exhibit Hall, 22,000-square-foot Performance Hall with stage, 450-seat auditorium, 5,100-square-foot, glass-enclosed atrium, and four meeting rooms. Additional event venues on the fairgrounds campus include the 36,000-square-foot Livestock Arena, ice center, round pavilion, and six expo halls. Lane Events Center features 2,500 parking spaces, full-service catering, and Wi-Fi access.
In addition to Lane Events Center, several Eugene event venues are found throughout the city, from the banks of the Willamette River to the heart of the downtown arts district. Home to six resident companies, the Hult Center for the Performing Arts features a 2,450-seat concert hall, a 495-seat theater, a towering glass lobby, and a gallery - all of which are available for private events. Groups can also gather at PK Park while cheering on the Eugene Emeralds, a minor league affiliate of the Chicago Cubs. The $19.2 million PK Park opened in 2010 and features seating for 4,000 guests, picnic plazas, luxury suites, and a children's fun zone. Unveiled in 2011, the 12,500-seat Matthew Knight Arena is home to the University of Oregon Ducks basketball teams. The arena also hosts concerts and special events, as well as offering private spaces for group events. For adrenaline-fueled group gatherings, the Willamette Pass Ski Area features 29 downhill runs, six lifts, and a vertical drop of 1,563 feet for downhill skiing, snowboarding, and snowtubing. Willamette Pass welcomes groups with its ski-day comprehensive program, while its lodge with restaurant and lounge is available for private events.
Eugene features a strong academic and economic presence. The city is home to the University of Oregon, Northwest Christian University, and Lane Community College. Eugene will soon welcome the University of Oregon's Knight Campus for Accelerating Scientific Impact - a state-of-the-art, billion-dollar scientific research center.