Although the Palisade Tourism Advisory Board (TAB) sent out requests for proposals (RFPs) back in January for a company to handle the marketing of the Town of Palisade, they had not received a single response by the March 3 deadline. Board members decided at their monthly meeting last Tuesday, March 10, to extend the response deadline to  March 27. The current marketing company, Ryan Sawyer Marketing, is also interested in submitting a proposal since by some oversight, they had also neglected to respond to the original RFP. Ryan Sawyer Marketing representative Bridgett Gutierrez, a regular TAB attendant, apologized to the group and guaranteed at least one response to the RFP by March 27, Ryan Sawyer’s! Gutierrez also passed out copies of the ‘City Page’ web page that Palisade is purchasing on the Colorado Tourism Office website this year for feedback before the final copy is submitted to the website.

Board members quickly reviewed the update and action plan from the CRAFT 201 grant, which provided the services of a representative from the Colorado Tourism Office to work with TAB to develop a marketing strategy and timeline. A final report is currently being prepared by the CTO representative and will be available to TAB members soon. TAB member Juliann Adams requested the services of a summer intern to help carry out the CRAFT 201 suggestions be provided by the Town of Palisade, Town Administrator Janet Hawkinson agreed.

A joint meeting with the City of Fruita Tourism board is scheduled for Thursday, March 26 to discuss how Fruita and Palisade might be able to cooperate on some marketing strategies. Although board members were not interested in joint advertisements, they agreed that some cooperative strategies could be useful (ex. having a Fruita host suggest wine tasting to some of their biking guests, Palisade host could suggest Fruita’s Dinosaur Museum to a family with young children). It was decided to share some of the findings from the CRAFT 201 grant project with the Fruita board as a sign of good faith and a desire to work together for a common good.

There was also discussion of the Chamber of Commerce seat on the Tourism Advisory Board. Chamber Director Andrew Weber was unclear on whether he was a voting member or not. Town Administrator Janet Hawkinson explained that because the Town partially funds the Chamber, it is a conflict of interest for the Chamber representative to TAB to be a voting member.

Hawkinson was also pleased to announce the rather unexpected awarding of a $1-million grant to fund the construction of sidewalks along the south side of Highway 6 from Iowa Street to the Palisade High School, making for a safer walk to school for many students.

Attending the March 10 meeting were Keith Ehlers, Rondo Buecheler, Charles Talbott, Cassidee Shull, John Sabal, Juliann Adams, Andrew Weber, Ryan and Jeff. Jean Tally was absent. Also present were Town Administrator Janet Hawkinson, Lydia Reynolds and Bridgett Gutierrez.