On I-85 and served by Amtrak, Durham is easily accessible by car, bus, and rail. The conference hotel in the heart of downtown Durham is a short walk from the Amtrak station and just 14 miles from Raleigh-Durham International Airport. There is no shuttle service between the airport and downtown Durham and a taxi ride is quite expensive ($45 one way), but Uber serves the airport. Uber drivers charge $18 to $24, depending on traffic.
VAF Durham 2016 offers two lodging options:
Durham Marriott City Center
We have a block of rooms reserved at the Durham Marriott City Center for $149/night plus 13.5% tax, single or double, May 31 through June 4. At the conference rate, the Durham Marriott offers the least expensive accommodations in downtown Durham and is a prime location as conference activities are in the attached convention center or within a few blocks of the hotel. the hotel also is in walking distance of many dining and entertainment options. To receive the conference rate, reservations must be made on or before Sunday, May 15.
Please Note: The VAF is obligated to pay for rooms set aside for the conference that are not booked. Your support of the VAF by staying at the hotel is greatly appreciated.Book room at VAF group rate
Durham Marriott City Center
Complimentary WiFi and discounted valet parking at $9/car/day (normally $16) is available for conference attendees registered at the Durham Marriott. Parking also is available one block away in the Durham Centre Garage, where the normal, self-parking rate is $8/day. If you tell the attendant at the Durham Centre Garage that you are with the VAF conference at the Durham Convention Center, you will be charged $3/day.
For Students Only: Chidley North Hall, NCCU Campus
Dorm rooms in Chidley North Hall, 1310 S. Alston Ave., on the North Carolina Central University campus, are available June 1 through June 4 to students registered for the conference. Chidley North Hall is 2 miles from the Durham Convention Center and has free parking. Rooms with private bath and linen are $35/person double occupancy and $50/person single occupancy. To make a reservation, complete an Individual Reservation Request Application and email it to firstname.lastname@example.org with a photocopy of your student ID. In turn, you will receive an invoice. Pre-payment may be made at check-in or in advance, with a credit card by phone or by mailing a check made out to NCCU Special Operations. You will be required to show your student ID at check-in. For more information, call 919-530-5446.
Are You In Need of a Roommate?
Neither the Marriott nor Chidley North Hall offers any sort of roommate match-up service, but you might find a feature of conference registration helpful. Near the top of the first page of registration, there is a link to a list of people already registered under that category (full registration or a la carte registration). You might find these lists helpful if you are searching for a roommate and recognize someone you know.
Downtown Durham Dining
More than 50 of Durham's 700+ restaurants have been recognized in regional or national media. Bon Appetit has named Durham one of "America's Foodiest Small Towns" (even though its population is more than 230,000) and Southern Living has designated Durham one of the "Top 10 Tastiest Towns in the South." Many of the city's restaurants that have garnered accolades are within walking distance of the Marriott Hotel. Information on downtown Durham restaurants is here. Additional information on Durham's dining scene is here. Check back periodically as we'll try to add more on Durham dining.
The Durham Bulls, Durham's triple-A minor league baseball team, became internationally famous thanks to the 1988 movie "Bull Durham" starring Kevin Costner, Susan Sarandon, and Tim Robbins. For more than six decades, the Bulls played in the Durham Athletic Park, four blocks north of conference HQ and open during the "City of the New South" tour on Friday. Since 1995 they have been playing in the modern Durham Bulls Athletic Park (known as the D-Bap), five blocks south of the Marriott Hotel. The Bulls are tremendously popular, and as luck would have it they are playing a home game Friday evening. If you're interested in seeing mascot Wooly Bully and experiencing southern minor league baseball at its best, this is a golden opportunity. See the team's official site and their June schedule. A history of the team is here.
For your edification, please visit the Durham History Hub, the public venue Durham's Museum of History, conveniently located in a former bus station at 500 W. Main St., just two blocks west of the Durham Marriott.Current exhibits include Durham A-Z: H is for Hayti; Durham Beginnings, 1865-1885; Our Bull City: Durham and the Rise of the Baseball Card; and Explore Durham Through Time. More information about the Durham History Hub is here.
Registration closes May 20, 2016