CHIPLEY — A Wausau-based Pit Bull Terrier dog show brings hundreds of visitors from out of state, and the Washington County Tourist Development Council wants to help keep that tradition going strong.
Sheree Folmar had withdrawn her application for a grant from the TDC after attending the council’s recent Event Planner Workshop due to the council’s new policy of providing local radio advertising instead of advertising funding.
“She brings in people from all over the country, and her best advertising is the national trade magazine,” said Heather Lopez, executive director of the TDC, during Monday’s meeting at the Washington County Chamber of Commerce building in Chipley. “If she advertises locally, there may be some local people who come by to see the dogs, but her main audience comes from out of state.”
Folmar said the local radio would not be very useful for her event so she withdrew her application.
Lopez said last year the American Dog Breeders Association dog show Folmar hosts is called the Sunshine State American Pit Bull Terrier Club (APBTC) and the event drew enough people to fill up motels in Chipley. “The only reason all the motels were not full was that some of them have a ‘no pets’ policy, so people were sent to Bonifay,” Lopez said.
“Now wait a minute,” said TDC board member Ted Everett. “This is a multi-day event that is bringing heads in beds, which is exactly the kind of thing the TDC is here to support.” Everett suggested the TDC help Folmar with advertising in the national magazine as well as offer some local radio advertising.
“We have to be flexible with our thinking, we don’t want to have our policies written in stone,” Everett said.
The board approved the motion to grant $400 to the ADBA dog show to go toward national advertising.
The board also tabled accepting the resignation of Scott Sweeney from the TDC. Sweeney submitted a letter informing the board of his intention to move to Holmes County to reside, although he will continue to work at Falling Waters State Park in Chipley.
Lopez said she would research whether or not members of the TDC were required to live in the county that the council serves.
Another member, Mark Hess, now also resides outside the county, so Lopez will find out if they can continue to serve on the TDC.
The board also put off advertising the open seat on the TDC until the matter can be researched.
Linda Cain, mayor of Chipley, is being replaced on the TDC board by Lee Dell Kennedy, a city councilman who serves as Chipley’s mayor pro tem. The board voted to renew Cain, Hess and Dana Phillips’ terms during the meeting.
The board members also voted to cancel their December meeting due to the holidays.