by Mike Gorrell
The Salt Lake Tribune

The Oceanography Society's biennial meeting is coming to Salt Lake City in 2012.

An estimated 4,000 scientists, limnologists and oceanographers involved in aquatic research will be in the city from Feb. 17-24, filing an estimated 8,415 room-nights in area hotels and generating $3.5 million for Salt Lake County's economy.

Chris Peterson, sales director for the Salt Lake Convention & Visitors Bureau, said a couple of historic elements helped Salt Lake City to outbid San Antonio, Baltimore and Seattle for the convention.

The event managers, SG Meeting & Marketing Services, was acquainted with Salt Lake City after having brought the American Society of Limnology to Utah's capital in 2005. Peterson's sales pitch also emphasized the role of Lake Bonneville and the Great Salt Lake in shaping the city's personality, a point he felt appealed to association members whose interests focus on both saltwater and freshwater issues.