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Wisconsin Oshkosh rents dorm rooms to air show visitors

Every year, tens of thousands of people flock to Oshkosh, Wisc. for AirVenture, an international air show. The event floods hotels and other local accommodations, so the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh recognized an opportunity.

As reported by local ABC affiliate WBAY, UW Oshkosh has again opened its residence hall doors for AirVenture guests. Now an annual tradition for the university, the residence halls house visitors from all 50 states and 25 international countries during the week-long event.

Not only are the residence halls becoming an increasingly popular option, but they also benefit from loyal, returning customers. “Once we get them, recruit them, they never leave,” said Marc Nylen, director of conference services at UW Oshkosh, in a WBAY interview.

Some visitors book blocks of dorm rooms in advance in batches as large at 100 at a time. For others, the dorm room accommodations are a last resort for those who waited too long to book a hotel room.

Reservations at residence halls carry a three-night minimum stay, but visitors get more for their money than just a place to lay their head. The housing program offers all-you-can-eat campus dining in the morning and for dinner, as well as a campus shuttle that takes visitors directly to the event from the residence hall.

The university, meanwhile, benefits from the fares from rooms that would otherwise go unused while students are away on summer break. Rates for non-air conditioned rooms is $75 per night, rooms with air conditioning are $125 per night and suites with air conditioning are $325 per night.

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