Jefferson City at a Glance
Location: Central Missouri
Access: Kansas City International Airport or St. Louis Lambert International Airport; Interstate 70
Hotel Rooms: 1,387
Jefferson City Convention and Visitors Bureau
Capital Plaza Hotel and Convention Center
Guest Rooms: 255
Meeting Space: 25,000 square feet of meeting space, including a 12,000-square-foot ballroom that can seat 1,425; 20 total meeting rooms
DoubleTree by Hilton
Guest Rooms: 151
Meeting Space: 8,152 square feet of meeting space, including the 3,500-square-foot Magnolia ballroom, which can accommodate 100 guests; six meeting rooms
Courtyard by Marriott
Guest Rooms: 121
Meeting Space: 6,425 square feet of meeting space that can accommodate groups of up to 150; A/B Meeting Room, which has 2,928 square feet; four event rooms
Who’s Meeting in Jefferson City
Missouri Lawyers Swear-In Ceremony
Attendees: 900 to 1,000 attendees
Missouri Elks Association
Post Mark Collectors Club
Attendees: 40 to 50 attendees
In the heart of Missouri, Jefferson City shines as the Show-Me State’s capital city. Here meeting attendees can tour the picturesque state Capitol, dive into Missouri history or enjoy a tour of a historic — and supposedly haunted — decommissioned penitentiary.
Situated along the Missouri River, downtown “Jeff City,” as it’s known by locals, boasts an array of unique specialty shops and restaurants, offering groups a great spot to unwind after a meeting day. The city also features plenty of options for outdoor enthusiasts and arts and culture lovers.
“We’re a pretty wide city east to west, but everything feels like only a 10-minute drive,” said Alexandra Bobbitt, communications manager for the Jefferson City Convention and Visitors Bureau. “We’re a very accessible city.”
No visit to Jefferson City would be complete without a tour of Missouri’s stately Capitol, which was completed in 1917. Inside, groups can tour the building’s impressive architecture and explore the state’s rich history via exhibits at the on-site Missouri State Museum.
“It’s beautiful inside,” said Bobbitt. “It’s not only the center of state government, but it’s also a museum of public art.”
Exhibits at the museum give insight on Missouri’s natural and cultural history, including Jefferson City’s role as a busy commerce hub during the days of riverboat shipping.
Nearby, the Missouri Governor’s Mansion, which was built in 1872 and stands as one of the oldest governor’s homes in the U.S., also offers guided tours. Guests can enjoy a walk back in time as they explore the first floor of the historic mansion and its pristine gardens and grounds. Missouri’s first lady has been known to surprise guests and join the tours from time to time.
“It is one of the few executive residences in the U.S. that is open to the public,” Bobbitt said.
For insight into a different side of Jefferson City’s history, groups of 25 or more can book private tours at the Missouri State Penitentiary, which operated from 1836 until its decommissioning in 2004. Public tours are also available for individuals and smaller groups. Once dubbed “the bloodiest 47 acres in America” by Time magazine because of an array of assaults on its grounds in the 1960s, the notorious penitentiary now offers history tours, photography tours, and ghost and paranormal tours so attendees can focus on the aspect of the now-empty prison that intrigues them most.
Beyond the many hotel meeting options, groups can schedule meetings at an array of unique venues in Jefferson City. For example, the Special Olympics Missouri Training for Life Campus, a 16-acre facility that serves athletes with intellectual disabilities, makes its property available for rental. The training center’s state-of-the-art meeting space can be used as one large venue or can be divided into three breakout rooms. Its gym is also available for special occasions rentals. Audiovisual service is provided.
“The multimedia center can only hold up to 40 people, but the facility itself is one of a kind,” said Bobbitt.
Groups can also reserve space at the Center for Soy Innovation, which opened in March 2020 and can comfortably accommodate meetings of up to 60 attendees. The modern, inviting facility includes interactive exhibits that highlight the importance and potential of the Missouri soy industry. Because of the facility’s focus, agriculture-related groups receive priority booking.
For groups looking for an industrial-chic facility for their next gathering, the Millbottom Event Center on West Mill Street offers open spaces that are suitable for weddings, corporate events and meetings. Able to accommodate up to 1,200 people, the spot is an especially popular destination for July 4, since it offers captivating views of Jefferson City’s downtown fireworks display.
Major Meeting Spaces
The area’s largest meeting venue can be found at the Capital Plaza Hotel and Convention Center, conveniently located near Jefferson City’s downtown Capitol. The hotel boasts 25,000 square feet of meeting space, 20 meeting rooms and 255 guest rooms. Here, the 12,000-square-foot ballroom can accommodate up to 1,425 guests in theater-style seating or 900 for round-table dining. Five smaller dedicated breakout rooms comfortably fit groups of 150 or fewer. The facility offers full-service catering, state-of-the-art audiovisual and tech support, and an experienced meeting planning team to help groups create their ideal meeting experience.
The DoubleTree by Hilton, near Jefferson City’s popular High Street, home to many unique local downtown shops and restaurants, can accommodate both midsize and smaller groups in its 8,152 square feet of meeting space and 151 guest rooms. Groups can choose from six meeting rooms here, including a large conference room that can accommodate 500 guests and five smaller rooms for groups of 100 or fewer. The hotel offers audiovisual support, catering and expert meeting planning assistance.
Opened in December 2020, Jefferson City’s new Courtyard by Marriott features 121 guest rooms and 6,425 square feet of meeting space, including a 2,829-square-foot meeting room that can accommodate groups of up to 150. Its four event rooms include access to audiovisual equipment and high-speed internet access.
The Holiday Inn and Suites Jefferson City features 1,933 square feet of meeting space broken into three dedicated meeting rooms. Its largest room can comfortably serve 228 attendees. Audiovisual equipment and business essentials, including teleconferencing equipment, whiteboards and LCD projectors, are available in each room.
After the Meeting
There’s no shortage of fun to explore after meetings in Jefferson City. Outdoor lovers will want to visit Katy Trail State Park, the longest converted rail-trail in the country. The trail, a wonderful spot for hiking or biking, stretches 225 miles between St. Charles and Clinton, and includes a trailhead in Jefferson City.
The Runge Conservation Nature Center in Jefferson City is another great spot to get outdoors, thanks to its five hiking trails; together, they make a 2.4-mile loop through samples of natural habitats found in Missouri, including woodlands, prairies, glades and streams.
Art aficionados can happily while away a few hours at the Jefferson City Museum of Modern Art, home to both rotating and permanent exhibitions of contemporary art. Meanwhile, live entertainment is easy to find most nights at the Mission, a popular live music venue on East High Street in operation since 2009.
When hunger strikes, Jefferson City offers an array of local dining options, such as longtime favorites Madison’s Café, Arris’ Pizza and, for dessert, Central Dairy, which has been serving up ice cream in downtown for decades.
High Street, in the city’s downtown, is home to an array of unique shops, from comic-book stores and art galleries to high-end boutiques.
Visitors can stop in at Capital City Cork and Board on High Street to end their shopping spree on a fun note. This board game shop offers more than 150 games to play while enjoying a small bite or a drink from the rotating cocktail, beer and wine list. Bar Vino on West High Street is another great spot to grab a glass of white or red for a post-meeting or post-shopping nightcap.
For a memorable adventure, visitors who are brave enough can book a five-hour or eight-hour overnight paranormal tour at the Missouri Penitentiary. Attendees will roam the halls of the empty former prison looking for signs of lingering spirits. Ghost hunting equipment can be checked out on-site. Tickets are $75 to $100 per person and only available to guests 18 and older.
“Even on days when the penitentiary is not offering a tour, visitors can enjoy the museum across the street in the Colonel Marmaduke House, which served as the warden’s residence,” said Bobbitt. “If you love history, or if you love the paranormal, it’s got lots of great artifacts and memorabilia from the prison.”