Holiday Island commissioners discuss marketing issues

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Recent meetings of the Holiday Island Suburban Improvement District Board of Commissioners have been filled with questions and concerns over advertising and promotion.

The district's intention is to look into ways of bringing in more people with the hope of increasing tourism and property sales.

The problem with that, according to commissioner Greg Davis, is that the board was not developed for marketing and sales and its main function is the management of the district's infrastructure, which has increased to include recreational facilities.

"We are not set up to advertise or market. We are set up to take care of Holiday Island," Davis said.

Davis explained during the board's meeting Monday that 15 or 16 years ago the community benefited from a lot of marketing, but that it was done by developer Tom Dees, president of the Holiday Island Development Corporation.

In 2010 Dees was approached by the board to help market the community. A contract for road signs and marketing was signed and Dees started started getting the signs made and placing them in strategic areas before the board canceled the contract and the signs were removed.

Since then there has been no direct marketing for the community, creating the current debate over the issue.

Holiday Island has basically relied on its web site, social media and word of mouth. The community continues to look for ways to market itself, including hiring a marketing company and even going as far as to suggest that hanging posters in the Rogers and Bentonville area would help the situation.

District Manager Dennis Kelly blamed the recent marketing and economic situation on the 2008 recession.

"The relationships we had established are lost and that is what has hurt us and getting those back is the key to solving this," Davis said. "We have to rebuild those relationships."

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  • They need something to market!! A community that has a significant assessment and provides very little isn't a good value. The budget is in shambles and the roads are falling apart with a board that is more interested in cheap golf than anything else. They continue trying to keep the public in the dark about what goes on there. When was the last time we saw current financials in an understandable format? When was the last time the board minutes were published somewhere?

    -- Posted by Larryh on Tue, Aug 4, 2015, at 11:15 PM
  • I agree with your comments 100% Larry. The board meeting minutes used to be published and nothing now.

    Everything seems to be around the GOLF COURSES and nothing else. There is so much more this area has to offer than the stupid money draining golf courses. If people want to play golf then they should foot the cost 100%, why should the other homeowners have to pay if they don't play.

    From what I see, ever since Tom Dees has not been involved everything went to hell and just keeps going down from there. When is the board going to put their golf clubs down and do something about it.

    Kelly needs to just stop blaming others, the economy etc., and make it happen.

    -- Posted by roger40 on Wed, Aug 5, 2015, at 3:38 PM
  • It is difficult to remain civil when discussing the board members. They move here from other areas, with no experience in the operation of any community. They have completely throw-out the procedures, rules and regulations and responsibilities for the elected office of Board of Commissioners. I know most don't want the negatives in the paper for all to read. But there is little hope that Holiday Island will change as long as the avid dedicated golfers (200)that influence and operate this community.

    When it comes to tourism and attracting buyers to Holiday Island, you will waste money and efforts doing it locally. They must think outside the box they have built around themselves and understand you must market this SID in large cities such as, Dallas, Tulsa, Wichita, Kansas City and St Louis to name a few. Beating the local bushes hasn't worked for 40 years and it's not going to work now.

    Only one person on the board has the necessary skills to actually be a board member, and he will be replaced at the end of his term by another one of the current types, with the same mentality. Some how H.I.., needs to rid its self of those who's only reason to be on the board is to ensure the protection and continued frivolous spending of the 2 courses. The golfers have a hold on this community that can only be broken by every citizens standing up and demanding change. Until then, they will keep digging in your pockets until you are broke.

    -- Posted by Concerned Person on Thu, Aug 6, 2015, at 12:44 PM
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