Visitors bureau OKs promoting 2014 fair at Fuji |

Visitors bureau OKs promoting 2014 fair at Fuji

John Barrette

An initial $5,000 budget for helping market the Sesquicentennial Fair in Carson City was approved by the Convention & Visitors Bureau board Monday.

At the same time, the board and bureau director made it clear their revenues wouldn’t be available to repay the $75,000 in fair seed money the city’s Board of Supervisors has provided. The city expects to receive repayment from fair revenues or somewhere else after the summer event at Fuji Park Fairgrounds next year.

“Fairs are tough,” said Jonathan Boulware of the Gold Dust West Casino, chairman of the board, after board approval for the marketing concept and related discussion of the repayment question. It was Stan Jones of the Purple Avocado, a board member, who asked Joel Dunn, bureau executive director, if city officials understood “we’re not in the repayment business.”

Dunn said he has had discussions that led him to conclude city officials did understand that is the case.

The bureau director also told the board he was using contract labor for marketing and advanced his opinion he could get started with $1,500 or so on promotion via marketing on social media, on the bureau website and elsewhere to help the Sesquicentennial Fair’s committee. He said overall, he expected to spend $4,000 or $5,000, and the board capped it at $5,000 for now. Any more would take another board vote later.

Dunn also said NV 150, the Nevada Commission on Tourism (NCOT) state-level effort to promote the overall Sesquicentennial year, likely would name Carson City’s fair a signature event and include it in the host of events it will market throughout late 2013 and during 2014.

He reported to the board on various other items, including details of a new bureau website set to launch in early November, as well as two grants he sought for a mobile application and to promote the Fuji Park Fairgrounds. That is where the fair would be held, but the $5,000 NCOT grant he is seeking must be tied to the grounds overall and not specifically to the fair. For the mobile app, he is seeking $10,000 from NCOT.

Jones asked Dunn for an update on city government’s plans for the multi-activity center slated to be built next to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Western Nevada building on Russell Way. Dunn said the city might break ground next spring, but the facility now planned is too small to attract major winter events that wold help the bureau. He said he still hopes the $5.7 million plan could be upgraded so a bigger MAC could get built.