Eureka Chamber holds Business After Hours in Holiday Island
HOLIDAY ISLAND -- The Eureka Springs Chamber of Commerce held a "Business After Hours" event Sept. 4 at the Holiday Island Clubhouse to hear how Holiday Island and Eureka Springs might benefit each other in tourist marketing.
Although the event was sparsely attended by Eureka business owners, four of the five Holiday Island commissioners, as well as the district manager and several department heads, attended. A few members of the Holiday Island Chamber of Commerce attended as well.
While attendees enjoyed a brief meal provided by HISID, the band "Swing and a Miss" entertained them.
Toni Rose, Eureka Chamber director of operations, told the crowd it is the Chamber's intention to do "a whole lot more" advertising of what Holiday Island has to offer next year and focus on networking between the two communities.
District Manager Dennis Kelly concurred with this plan.
"We take the attitude that Eureka Springs is good for us, and we like to think we're good for Eureka Springs," he said.
He gave an example of the Arkansas Sheriffs' Association holding a conference in Eureka, and Chamber president Mike Bishop calling Holiday Island to arrange a golf tournament for them.
"We have facilities that Eureka doesn't have," Kelly said. "We can fill in the gaps."
He thanked Tanya Smith of Turpentine Creek for not having the Fourth of July fireworks there this year "because then [more people] came out here."
Chuckling, Smith replied, "We're okay with that; we won't be doing that again, so feel free to take it over."
Kelly said he would like to see a regional collaborative effort to have the fireworks at Holiday Island.
Rose said the Eureka Chamber distributes 150,000 visitor guides every year and called it "one of the biggest economic drivers for Eureka Springs and Holiday Island."
She said their website had 2.4 million hits last month.
Commissioner Ken Brown asked Eureka business owners to consider supporting Holiday Island developer Tom Dees' offer to donate land to build the new hospital in Holiday Island. He said polls show that several citizens in Eureka Springs are in favor of it, and the HI board will be voting on a resolution at its next meeting, Sept. 15, to support the idea.
Kelly and Golf Pro Barry Storie presented a quilt created by Laura Colby to Rose for the Eureka Chamber. The quilt depicts the colorful hills and valleys of Holiday Island.