Construction workers are reflected in the window of Johnny B. Good’s Diner in downtown Steamboat Springs on Wednesday. The Steamboat Springs Chamber Resort Association and Mainstreet Steamboat Springs are planning several upcoming downtown promotions, including Restaurant Week at the end of this month.

Photo by John F. Russell

Construction workers are reflected in the window of Johnny B. Good’s Diner in downtown Steamboat Springs on Wednesday. The Steamboat Springs Chamber Resort Association and Mainstreet Steamboat Springs are planning several upcoming downtown promotions, including Restaurant Week at the end of this month.

Steamboat OKs $75K for marketing

Chamber, Mainstreet get excess 2009 funds for events, promotions

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Heavy equipment could been seen moving up and down Lincoln Avenue through the front door of Johnny B. Good's Diner in downtown Steamboat Springs on Wednesday. The Steamboat Springs Chamber Resort Association and Mainstreet Steamboat Springs are planning several upcoming downtown promotions, including Restaurant Week at the end of this month.

— City officials approved $75,000 Tuesday night to boost upcoming downtown events and regional summer marketing campaigns.

The Steamboat Springs City Council voted, 5-2, to give the money, which comes from a pool of excess 2009 funds, to the Steamboat Springs Chamber Resort Association for a summer marketing package presented to the City Council in April. The $75,000 package consists of $35,000 for broadcast media promotions in Denver and Front Range markets in June; $25,000 for “pulse campaign” efforts to promote specific events, such as the Hot Air Balloon Rodeo and Steamboat All Arts Festival, to regional markets; $10,000 for efforts to promote Steamboat Springs as a conference and group meeting destination; and $5,000 for the promotion and execution of upcoming downtown events, facilitated by Mainstreet Steamboat Springs.

Council members Meg Bentley and Walter Magill voted against the allocation. Magill cited the city’s tight budget — city employees remain on a furlough program that cuts their pay and hours by 10 percent — and asked whether now is the time to bring people to Steamboat, where the downtown corridor is in the middle of a massive repaving project.

Chamber Marketing Director Lynna Broyles said although the broadcast promotions on Front Range NBC and CBS affiliates will occur for three weeks in June, those efforts will focus on drawing visitors for the entire summer. Work on the Colorado Department of Transportation’s Lincoln Avenue repaving project will end for the season June 30, if the project is not completed sooner.

“The bulk of our summer, and our highest visitation, actually occurs from basically the last week of June through the second to third week of August, so we’re still looking at the bulk of summer for people to choose to travel up here,” Broyles said.

Mainstreet’s Tracy Barnett said the $5,000, which is in addition to $5,000 the City Council designated earlier this year for downtown promotion, will go a long way toward executing three upcoming downtown events. The events are collectively titled “Dig Downtown,” as a nod to the construction work.

The first is a discount program from May 12 to June 18. Barnett said participating restaurants and retailers will hand out cards, upon a purchase, that give 20 percent off a food order or retail item at another participating business.

The second event is Res­taurant Week, May 24 through 31, through Memorial Day weekend. Broyles said participating restaurants would offer discounts with a theme of $20.10, to commemorate the year. Mainstreet sponsored its first Restaurant Week a year ago.

The third event is a “sidewalk sale” Memorial Day weekend.

“The sidewalk sale may not be actually happening on the sidewalks, depending on construction,” Broyles said.

The City Council allocated $500,000 of excess 2009 revenues in March, giving $250,000 for efforts to improve Howelsen Hill and $250,000 for projects in several city departments. Another $250,000 is set aside for potential one-time performance bonuses for city employees, but council members voted to decide on that expenditure in August, when the city has a clearer picture of this year’s sales tax revenues and finances.

City Finance Director Debra Hinsvark said excess 2009 revenues could total as much as $1.4 million, from over-budget sales tax revenues last year and money-saving efforts by city departments. Hinsvark said the 2009 audit should be completed in about two weeks.

Barnett said the $5,000 approved Tuesday would allow Mainstreet to promote the downtown events without contributions from downtown businesses. Broyles said the larger marketing package is crucial to bring summer visitors to Steamboat.

“We need to do everything we can right now … to maintain our competitive advantage against other mountain resort communities in Colorado,” she said.

— To reach Mike Lawrence, call 871-4233 or e-mail mlawrence@steamboatpilot.com

Comments

callguinness 4 years, 6 months ago

The city spending and additional $75,000 on advertising is a good idea, no reason to not try and attract customers to steamboat so we can have some more sales tax income.

However, based on the conversations we have had over at http://www.steamboatpilot.com/news/20... I was wondering how you all feel about the city finding that they may have as much as $1,400,000 to spend, leaving them with about $825,000. After the $250,000 to Howelsen, $250,000 to city departments and the $75,000 for advertising.

Any chance that assuming this is true that the employees should get the $250,000 as a way to try and keep so many of them from leaving or should the city just keep sitting on the $825,000 with no place to spend it?

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1999 4 years, 6 months ago

why does it matter of anyone leaves their jobs???

I can gaurantee you there are 50 qualified people standing in line for the job you leave.

SO LEAVE YOU WHINER!!!!!

Why are on earth do you consider your self irreplacable????

please tell us whta skills you hold over EVERYONE else

give someone else a job who might appreciate it!!!!!

GOOD LORD

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callguinness 4 years, 6 months ago

I would say that I'm 100% replaceable. This is not about me. It is not about me leaving, as a matter of fact I do LOVE my job. Find it very rare to be able to wake up and be excited to go to work every single day.

This is about people who are not replaceable. I'm talking about the firefighters and police that are leaving, because they can't support their family on what they are making, and can make a lot more doing something else. These people are leaving with other jobs already set up. Simply as a monetary move this makes sense for them personally, however your and me, just joe blow citizens are losing a lot more than you may realize.

They are not easily replaced, and I wonder if we were to add up the cost of, hiring, training, and getting the experience to a new firefighter if you would be so sure that just replacing them is a good idea.

The skills these people have is their experience. To try and not totally repeat my self I will keep this brief, but if your house is on fire do you want a rookie crew or an experienced one, if your house is broken into, do you want an experienced PD officer or a rookie?

I'm happy I have my job, for that matter, I would for go me getting the money if it meant that the rest of the city employees could have it. I don't think I'm that valuable, special or remarkable. I do however know of many City employees who are.

Some things in life are about more than just, me me me. Didn't you learn that in kindergarden?

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Jeff_Kibler 4 years, 6 months ago

Guinness: I'm enjoying one right now.

As you see it, is the exodus primarily police and firefighters?

Where are they going, given the tight budgets most municipalities face?

Perhaps $250k is hardly enough to address the problem.

Maybe a story for the Pilot??? Just asking.

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callguinness 4 years, 6 months ago

Kibler- Thank you for asking some intelligent questions. I will do my best to answer intelligently.

I feel that people are what make any organization or business tick.

As I see it police and fire are two of the harder place to replace people, even hiring an "experienced" person into these positions still requires much training to bring them up to speed on the "steamboat way." However they also have some great recent examples.

This week a firefighter who has 20yrs of EMS and 4yrs of fire service had to leave, because he couldn't support his family on what he was making as a member of SSFR. He is able to live in steamboat running a business making more money and having more time with his family. Great for him, a huge loss to the community. Last fall, a firefighter with nearly 5 years of experience left. This year could see another 2-3 firefighters with 5-20 years be lost. This is huge, because replacing them doesn't happen overnight. 6-9 months is the basement bottom to bring someone up to a low functioning level. Then it is a slow year to year experience gaining, learning process from there.

The police have been having this problem for years. They have constantly been training and loosing good people. An officer comes here right out of POST school and spends a few years getting some experience here, before moving to a larger department elsewhere. I'm not as versed in the exact details of the PD, but it seems like there is a new officer face every couple of months. They have the same problem as the fire department when it comes to training. Sure the basics and the book work take some time. However when it comes to the real job, experience is not something you will ever get in a class room.

This is not a problem that is limited to only the FD and PD, many other city departments have similar problems, but I couldn't comment on them directly.

If you want to know where they are going, I would suggest a quick google search for "police department hiring" "fire department hiring" seems like even in these tough times, there are a lot of them out there.

$250K doesn't even begin to solve the problem. However it does show the current experienced employees that if you put your head down and save the city a bunch of money, they will throw some small portion of that back at you.

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