The city is looking for a partner to share the expense of having a two-page tourism-related spread featuring St. Clair in an upcoming edition of Missouri Life magazine.
During the July 2 board of aldermen meeting, City Administrator Rick Childers said the Franklin County Tourism Committee is requesting financial support for the published promotion that could feature a 16-page insert on the county and its communities and major attractions. The target date is the April-May 2013 edition of the magazine.
“This insert will be not only a tourism tool, but also an economic development tool,” Franklin County Senior Planner Scottie Eagan said in a recent email sent to Childers and other officials throughout the county.
For a cost not exceeding $2,000, St. Clair Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Angela Crawford said St. Clair would get two pages of the 16-page insert that would be placed in the magazine. It also would get an extra 5,000 copies of the insert for local distribution. Crawford attended the July 2 meeting to discuss the project with city officials.
Eagan is seeking participation from the county as well as from municipalities and major tourism destinations such as Meramec Caverns.
“What this money would get us is a write-up about Franklin County, including the municipalities and some attractions,” Eagan said. “We are needing to know, rather quickly, who is interested in joining this effort so we can see how much money it will cost us in the end.”
The overall cost is $16,000 for the 16 pages, or $1,000 per page.
“She (Eagan) is requesting $2,000 from various communities and organizations for this,” Childers said. “It is not a budgeted item.”
Other potential cities that could participate would be Washington, Union, Sullivan, Pacific and New Haven. Besides Meramec Caverns, Purina Farms and the Shaw Nature Reserve were mentioned.
Crawford said the magazine would send a staff writer and photographer to St. Clair to put together the specific two-page spread. It would feature whatever city officials would want to promote within the community.
Childers said his primary concern would be making sure St. Clair gets a full two pages.
“We would want to make any contributions to this contingent on that,” he said.
“Two-thousand (dollars) would be the maximum,” Crawford said.
Ward 1 Alderman Zach Fuchs said $2,000 is “a lot to put out” for a project like this in tough economic times. He also said that from a tourism standpoint, St. Clair currently doesn’t have “that draw.”
Crawford said she believes it is important for St. Clair to show the rest of the county that we “should not be ignored.”
“We don’t want to continue the trend that St. Clair isn’t important,” she said.
Ward 1 Alderman Nathan Tate agreed.
“We’re trying to grow,” he said. “We’re trying to show people that we’ll grow.”
Ward 2 Alderman Travis Dierker then asked if the Chamber would be willing to split the cost with the city. Tate added that he thought that would be a good idea.
Crawford said she would check with the Chamber’s board of directors to see if there was any interest in that.
The board then made and approved a motion that it would be willing to spend up to $1,000 on the insert.
Crawford said she would let the city know what the Chamber board decided as far as partnering on the project.
The Chamber board meets monthly with its next gathering scheduled for July 25.