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Emery County Travel bureau disperses funds to help tourism

Ryan Shaw at last year's Desertview Pro Rodeo. The rodeo this year is July 25, 25, 26. Next year the rodeo will move to the second weekend in June.


The Emery County Travel Bureau meets bimonthly to promote tourism in Emery County. Tina Carter said revenues in 2013 were $316,000 which was higher than expected. These revenues come from the transient room and restaurant taxes.

Mike McCandless, board chairman expressed concerns over the collection system for the restaurant tax. Reports are spotty and in the month of February the amount collected was zero, which isn't possible. McCandless said they aren't the only county that is having trouble with the state collecting these taxes and then reimbursing back to the county their share. McCandless said, "We are forced to accept what the Utah State Tax Commission sends to us."

The travel bureau members spent January and February attending travel shows.

The new manager, Tim Glenn for the John Wesley Powell Museum attended the meeting. He said he wants more activities and events at the museum. He is working to improve collections, rotate exhibits, create new exhibits and bring more traveling exhibits to the museum. The museum is on summer hours seven days a week from 8 a.m. - 7 p.m. The seasonal help at the museum is back on staff. They are working to bring more visitors into the museum.

Jim Fauver will replace Taina Benson on the travel bureau board. The board will also begin advertising for the position vacated by Kelly Bayles.

Jonathan Hunt was appointed by the board to attend the Trails Committee meetings and be on that board.

Jake Atwood from the Emery County Recreation District approached the board about advertising money for the fair and the rodeo. Next year the rodeo will move to June which will be a better weekend for cowboys. The new Stock Contractor is Bar-T Stock. The current rodeo weekend, the last weekend of July is busy with big rodeos in Spanish Fork and Cheyanne and the Desertview Pro Rodeo doesn't draw enough cowboys that weekend.

By moving it to the second weekend in June it will be the second largest purse rodeo in the area that weekend. But for this year 2014 the rodeo will be held on July 24, 25, 26.

Atwood reported the fair is still looking for a carnival. There will be elephant rides, reptile show, battle of the bands, Nathan Osmond and the free concert is American Young.

Atwood would like to do some advertising with the radio stations in Moab and Vernal and also up north. The rodeo and fair would like to draw people from surrounding counties.

The board approved $3,500 for the rodeo and $3,500 for the fair.

The board approved $1,500 for advertising for the Cowboys Memorial Day rodeo in Castle Dale on Memorial weekend and funds for updating the sign on Main Street Ferron for the Millsite Golf Course.

The board approved a funding request for the stock show in Ferron.

The film project which will be shot at local coal mines will be in July. It's a science fiction thriller movie.

Jonathon Hunt, state parks manager for Huntington, Millsite and Scofield said they are trying to get paddle boards for rental at the state parks.

Goblin Valley has been very busy this winter and spring. Little Wild Horse is very busy also.

Green River trails committee is working on trails surrounding Green River.

McCandless reported Key Bank in Green River is closing and he has been working with other banking institutions to try to keep a bank in Green River. Those expressing interest have been Eastern Utah Credit Union, Desertview Federal Credit Union and Cache Valley Credit Union. Right now he is working to negotiate a lease or sale of the existing Key Bank building.

Board members expressed concerns with the upkeep of the Tie Fork rest area in Spanish Fork canyon.

They were supposed to distribute brochures and information about the communities surrounding the rest area. Emery County contributed money to that facility, but the tourist information isn't being handed out and the videos promoting tourism haven't been running for months.

It's a very busy rest area and a great opportunity to promote Utah. The board will look at solutions to that problem.

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