Florida hotel backs out of hosting FreedomWorks event

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Glenn has been covering the Common Core curriculum for months now – exposing little known facts about the system that is seeks to amend the nation’s educational schema.

Based on the media attention the education system has garnered, it is should come as no surprise that many parents are up in arms. In Florida, parents are planning to protest a national Common Core conference that is supposed to be hosted later this month by The Center for College & Career Readiness. FreedomWorks, a non-profit organization, agreed to help these Florida parents by providing the resources for a grassroots-training program during their rally.

On radio this morning, Glenn spoke with the FreedomWorks director of grassroots initiatives, Whitney Neal, who explained that the Ritz Carlton in Orlando cancelled the conservative group’s reservations — after the group had already paid for and booked the space.

Neal explained FreedomWorks chose the Ritz Carlton because it is next to the J.W. Marriott that is hosting the Common Core conference. “We set this up with the hotel next door to where they’re having the convention,” she said, “booked the contract, paid for everything, and yesterday we’re asked to no longer host our event there.”

“We told them it was moms and dads and grandmas and concerned citizens who really just wanted to learn,” she continued. “This is a learning opportunity and we were giving them, you know, information and skills. It’s a small group. You know, it’s very small in comparison to the group they were having at the other hotel… I was explaining free speech also.”

The Ritz Carlton has since responded to Neal’s claims and provided TheBlaze their account of what happened.

TheBlaze reports:

But the hotel says the decision to cancel was based on safety concerns. In a separate interview with TheBlaze, Michelle Valle, a representative for both hotels, explained that the Ritz and the JW Marriott have the same owners and that they are considered part of the same resort. Thus, issues pertaining to one campus would certainly impact the other.

And according to Valle, who handles PR for both venues, partisan angst wasn’t at the center of the cancellation. Instead, the spokeswoman notes that there was a serious crowd-control issue presented by the publication and advertisement of the protest on social media.

“So [the Ritz is] refunding your money now ten days out because they were so concerned about the J.W. Marriott and they seem to not really understand that, you know, you have a right to gather peacefully,” Glenn said to Neal. “They have a right to not accept your money and not sign a contract, but they were in a contract.”

With just over a week to go, the group has no place to hold their event. Glenn asked Neal to explain what kind of space FreedomWorks is looking for.

“Well, our original space was for about 100 activists to do training. You know, there are other activists that are coming in town to actually hold their rally, but for our training we were predicting about 100,” she said. “I don’t know. There may be more now that this is getting some attention, but we would love to and welcome anyone who wants to learn about Common Core and, you know, get equipped to go educate their community.”

If there are any hotels in the area that have a space to accommodate the event, Neal asked that they contact her via the FreedomWorks office. “I would happily speak with them about this opportunity because we are 10 days out and we have people coming from multiple states. It wasn’t just Florida,” Neal explained. “These were people who were planning to stay at this hotel and they’re driving from Georgia, South Carolina, Tennessee to attend.”

There are certainly two sides to every story, but, ultimately, Neal feels that FreedomWorks and this event were politically targeted. “We are seeing this happen around the country – the pro-Common Core group sees that citizens are aware and concerned about these standards and the surrounding requirements,” she told TheBlaze. “I feel that the large convention next door was concerned about our event.”

  • landofaahs

    They have a right to serve whomever they wish.  I just wish that could be done over the whole country.  Like the people who wanted to force the woman to make their wedding cake against her beliefs.  She should have just listed the price for those emotionally difficult cakes at a price of $25,000.  After all the stress would be tremendous.  That and each cake is a work of ART.  We all know that artists should not be forced to make speech against their will.

  • Anonymous

    That Kibbee and Bits fellow needs to shave those ridiculous sideburns, wake up and smell the coffee and then drink some (man what a bore). He sent a little girl and 3 grandma s  to keep common core at bay. Then they checked into the same hotel – yes different buildings – but the same hotel chain/collaboration. If I can quote Bugs Bunny “What a maroon”.
    God save us from ourselves.

  • Jerry Smith

    Sounds like good old liberal bias but what do I know. Actually I think it’s establishment bias directed at the good and decent people who are fighting for the survival of our nation.

  • Anonymous

    remind me to not book any rooms at either a marriot or a ritz carlton in the future. wimps.

  • Jenner

    We will be travelling this summer. I will check to be sure that none of the places we stay are connected to or owned by, marriot, ritz or their affiliates. We can play the same game!!!

  • jalina susan stutte

    I will not stay at a Marriott, Ritz Carlton, or any other hotel that is owned by them. I wouldn’t want my conservatism to harm them like a cold. They are full of bedbugs anyway.

  • Anonymous

    Suggestion: contact some churches and perhaps one can have a meeting place and others could help with accommodations.  We are in Anaheim, CA or I would volunteer our church with it’s 2400 seat worship center!  God Bless.

    • Anonymous

      Baptists there have a huge seating area, also Calvary Assembly (along I-4), which has escalators to service their large seating. But accommodations?

  • Jon Galt

    The Ritz is kicking you out because they know the hateful libs will beat the living crap out of you.  Remember the violence from the left in DC at the conservative convention (I forget which group(s).  Didn’t one lib actually push a woman in a wheelchair down a stairwell?  And the FoxNews reporter who was violently attacked on camera for asking a lib union worker a question. 

    I believe the last time conservatives were violent was around 1776.  Since the 60’s, at least, all the violence from organized groups has been from the left.  Sorry, some lone nut who hates the govt does not make Timothy McVeigh a conservative.  Seriously, most conservatives are too busy trying to balance family and work while being productive and making $$.  Jail time doesn’t pay very well.   

  • linda barnett

    Who wants to stay in those snob hotels anyway?
    Sounds like a big ripoff to me.
    Holiday inn is nice and has big convention rooms, usually.
    Or any other regular person’s hotel.

  • Anonymous

    Will never use Ritz Carlton and will tell friends and family of their discrimination policy.  Same decision for Marriott also. 

  • Anonymous

    We are going to see this more and more. Nazi Germany all over again and those on the left, The ones with ONE brain cell; The ones who are A-political slanting left, haven’t a clue. Same mentality as those in 1939. They may realize at some point something is terribly wrong and by then, it will be too late. We all need to be vocal. We all need to make some phone calls and speak our mind. I plan on calling the Ritz and any other establishment doing the same. Shame on those that cave into tyranny!

  • http://www.facebook.com/jules.p.guidry Jules P. Guidry

    no surprise here…once the common core folks got wind of the trainings to be held next door, they simply made their displeasure known to the idiots who run both hotels and the deed was done. Probably, given how the left operates, via threats of violence from the “educators” who would be attending the common core thing. Remember the union teachers in WI? Same deal. 

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_4HAW7OERGSC7VZM72V7IGDJ3B4 Sharmane

    Sue for breach of contract.  Sometimes you have to fight fire with fire.

  • Anonymous

    What this Hotel has done is a BREECH OF CONTRACT and can be sued  accordingly and SHOULD BE SUED accordingly. This Hotel also broke Discriminations Laws as well, and those responsible for such Discrimination can be and should be Imprisoned. However, I must ask this next question, because it is equally as important, and as TEA PARTYERS, we must be ABOVE REPROACH in ALL that we do. Hence:


    Is not this Tea Party Group doing that which Politicians, like the IRS, GAO, EPA and etc. are and have done, wasting tax-Payers dollars? Could not this Tea Party Group have made reservations at a Motel 6-Suites and Inn at 1/4 of the expense? Are these Tea Party Leaders who are using Donations from their supporters HUMBLE ENOUGH to stay at a Motel 6?

    We must also hold this TEA PARTY GROUP accountable as well. We must not be a respecter of persons and should expect Humility and Thrift from such tea Party Leaders!

  • Anonymous

    Freedom Works should sue Ritz Carlton for breach of contract for so much it will make them thing twice before they ever cancel another reservation. Political motivation is having far too much influence on justice in our society today.

  • http://www.facebook.com/rigoberto.serrano.39 Pachy Serrano

    Freedom Works is not a grass-root organization (fact), It was created by one of the most conservative and political connected leaders in D.C. Dick Armey. By the way is was a lobbist soon after he ended his time in congress . . . grass-root my behind!!

  • steve ward

    i can not wait to just say NO coming soon to the carlton nearest you !!plus i think it may even save me some money   lol

  • bucketnutz

    You can bet the Whitehouse called them  after the NSA told them what they were going to do.

  • Anonymous

    Instead of preaching to the choir – tell the ppl that need to hear:
    Contact Information

    Ritz Carlton Headquarters:The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, L.L.C 4445 Willard Avenue, Suite 800
    Chevy Chase, Maryland 20815
    Phone: 301-547-4700
    Fax: 801-468-4069 Ritz Carlton at Grande Lakes – Orlando…the offending hotel site:4040 Central Florida Parkway Orlando, FL 32837The Ritz-Carlton: (407) 206-2400 

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