One thousand members of Phi Beta Sigma - one of the world's largest historically black fraternities - are back in Hartford after a 30-year absence for their four-day eastern regional conference, starting Thursday, authorities say.
Mayor Pedro E. Segarra, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and State Treasurer Denise Nappier will officially welcome the fraternity at the group's 6 p.m. dinner Thursday in the ballroom of the Marriott Hartford Downtown, 200 Columbus Blvd.
Phi Beta Sigma International President Jimmy Hammock of Tennessee also will be in Hartford to meet with his membership.
On Saturday, the Sigmas will host for the public a free small business expo and marketplace from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Marriott.
In addition to the Marriott, members from 13 eastern states are staying at the Hilton Hartford, and the Residence Inn Downtown Hartford.
It is the first time since 1982 that the Sigmas have held a major conference in Hartford, the Greater Hartford Convention and Visitors Bureau says.