ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Officials in tourism-dependent central Florida are hoping bodybuilders and show dogs help kick-start a rebound for convention business that was laid low this year by the pandemic.

The Orlando Sentinel reports that Joe Weider’s Olympia Fitness and Performance Weekend, a gathering of muscle men and women, is expected to bring about 3,000 people to the Orange County Convention Center next week.

They will follow thousands of dogs and handlers who are at the Orange County Convention Center this week for the AKC National Championship dog show, though public spectators aren't being allowed because of coronavirus concerns.

“There’s still a lot of uncertainty in the marketplace,” Convention Center Executive Director Mark Tester told local tourism officials at a meeting earlier this month. “But we feel that we’re in a really solid place as it relates to a lot of our competitors.”

Some of Orlando’s biggest convention competitors have not hosted a gathering since the COVID-19 crisis erupted in early spring.

Indeed, the body-building competition was originally scheduled to be held in Las Vegas this week, but it was moved to Orlando because of Nevada’s more-restrictive attendance rules that would have limited crowds to 250 spectators.

The Orange County Convention Center lost 67 shows to the coronavirus pandemic this year. Canceled or postponed meetings would have had an economic impact of $1.7 billion on the region, notably in hotels and restaurants, some of which furloughed employees or closed permanently, Tester said.

“We believe it will take some time for certain industries that have been affected negatively to get back to where they were pre-COVID,” Tester said.

The Florida Department of Health on Saturday reported cumulative totals of more than 1.1 million coronavirus cases, a daily jump off more than 10,500 cases, and 20,049 related deaths since March.

To help with meetings that want to combine in-person with virtual elements, the convention center added a state-of-the-art digital broadcast center. It also earned accreditation from the Global Biorisk Advisory Council for outbreak prevention as proof the complex was using best practices, protocols and safety procedures to control risks associated with the COVID-19 virus.

At the American Kennel Club National Championship, every exhibitor is required to wear a face mask, social distancing is being enforced and temperature checks are required before entry. Participants and their dogs are being told to leave the ring area once they are done.

About 6,000 people are participating in the show, which typically attracts 15,000 people.

“Orlando was a no-brainer for us,” said Brandi Hunter, spokeswoman for the kennel club, which has held its championships at the Orange County Convention Center for about a decade. “With a million square feet, if you can’t socially distance here, you can’t socially distance anywhere.”