CAPC workshop focuses on budget

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

The Eureka Springs City Advertising and Promotion Commission is a lot closer to finalizing its 2018 budget.

On Wednesday, Nov. 15, the commission met for a workshop to discuss budget items. Chairwoman Susan Harman asked director Mike Maloney why he dropped the internet expenses, and Maloney said it’s because he cut a deal with the internet service provider.

“We got back and forth. We talked about what we wanted and what was appropriate … the things we wanted to keep,” Maloney said. “It ended up being right at $94,800, which I felt more than comfortable with.”

Harman asked if the reduced numbers got the commission the same amount of marketing value as 2017, and Maloney said it’s better.

“We’re actually getting more,” Maloney said. “Our website is going to be changing on a very regular basis.”

The website will resemble a news website, Maloney said, with updates on city events and other information being featured daily. That means the website will change, Maloney said, making it more interesting for tourists to visit. He’s hoping to improve the commission’s presence on Youtube and other visual sites, Maloney said, to bring more people to town.

“I think all these things become much more vital than we’ve had before in the past,” Maloney said.

Another good change, he said, is the jump from cable television marketing to network affiliate marketing. Maloney said he has been working with CBS, ABC and NBC affiliates from Dallas to Joplin, Mo., to promote Eureka Springs.

“Their spread is just so much bigger. In the overall cover, we’re covering multiples of counties,” Maloney said. “That’s a lot of traffic. When we buy cable, we might be getting two or three counties.”

The commission moved on to discuss the budget for May Festival of the Arts, with commissioner Carol Wright asking if the ArtRageous Parade will be taking place. Maloney said it will but the Eureka Springs Arts Council won’t be managing it.

“It’s going to be more of a community-based parade, which is a good thing,” Maloney said. “It’s a collaborative effort of a lot of people who want to make sure it happens.”

The CAPC will provide talent and promotion to the parade, Maloney said, with private donors giving money for the prizes.

“That will encourage people to be creative to get that money,” commissioner Dusty Duling said.

Maloney remembered this year’s May Festival of the Arts, saying the commission will be handling the next festival the same way. Artists will be paid out for their contributions to the month-long festival, Maloney said. He said the arts council is dedicated to making the festival a success.

“What they’ve asked for at this point is to be able to enhance that and do more,” Maloney said.

In other business, the commission discussed how to coordinate Christmas events and decorations with other city commissions. Harman said she’d like the commissions to work together to create a five-year plan on how to bring more people to town during Christmas.

“Is the plan that you’re going to come up with a committee or a group, or you’re physically going to come up with that plan and then you will also work with the chamber and the downtown network to promote things like shows in The Auditorium?” Harman asked.

Maloney said he’s open to that idea.

“It will require a collaborative effort amongst the CAPC, downtown network, other merchants on the highway that would like to participate, the chamber, the mayor’s arts council and for that matter, the Rotary,” Maloney said. “We, as the CAPC, are in one of the best positions to be able to go ahead and advise and formulate those meetings.”

The commission’s next regular meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 13, at The Auditorium.

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