The Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) will meet in Louisville in 2009 in conjunction with the 150th anniversary of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (SBTS).
The convention has rarely met in the city due to limited hotel space, according to the Associated Press (AP). The meeting marks the first since the denomination's last meeting in the city in 1959.
The Louisville's Seminary President R. Albert Mohler Jr. said construction of the new Marriott Hotel, the renovation of the Galt House and other measures are making the convention possible.
Nearly 12,000 messengers gathered in Nashville this week for the convention, and Mohler said typically half as many adult guests also attend.
Metro Mayor Jerry Abramson stated the convention, on June 16-17, will bring an estimated $9 million to the local economy, reported Courier-Journal.
"I would love to have 20,000 visitors" patronizing such attractions as Kentucky Kingdom and downtown museums, Abramson said, adding that investment in downtown convention and hotel facilities "is paying off."
The decision came in a vote at this year's convention.