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THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
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Room Tax Commission Hears Grant Requests

Issue Date: March 22, 2018

Committee members listened to four presentations for possible funding at the Room Tax Commission meeting on Wednesday, March 14. The committee will have to choose between the four presenting groups as to which one will be most beneficial in helping support and brand Marinette as a go to destination. There is $30,000 in the Room Tax fund that can be distributed.

Scott Craw and Christian Tulodieslei presented on behalf of the WISHIGAN Team Rowing Club International River Regatta. The club has been local for five years and they row two times per week starting in May, weather permitting.

The event will be held Aug. 17 and 18 with a draw of people attending from Marquette, Cedarville and Milwaukee, resulting in overnight hotel stays. Their agenda consists of a Friday night bonfire and Saturday morning free coffee and donuts, followed by the Ragata. T-shirts will be given to participants of the race. Last years attendance was approximately 31 attendees and is growing every year.

The club is asking for $500 to help cover the cost of the T-shirts and reduce entree cost to $15. The Marinette Logo will be placed on the T-shirt.

Presenter Dale Minzlaff representing Marinette American Legion Baseball was asking for assistance for a new set of bleachers to replace a set that is over 40 years old and is not repairable. One set of bleachers was able to be repaired and brought up to code.

The bleachers would cost $2,700 and they are asking the City to cover the cost of the bleachers or at the least, 2/3rds of the cost, leaving the Legion to cover $900 of the $2,700. The Legion is asking for a total amount of $8,000 to help fund the tournament.

Legion Baseball again this year will be hosting the State Baseball Tournament with a total of eight teams including Marinette. It is a five day tournament and brought in $17,000 in 2013 when they last hosted the tourney, which funded a new groomer at a cost of $15,000. So far there are 70 hotel rooms reserved for the tournament.

Any profits earned goes right back into maintenance and updating of the facilities and equipment.

Trista Hobbs spoke on behalf of Marinette and Menominee Area Chamber of Commerce, Downtown Marinette Action Group (DMAG) Plant Our Pride Walleye Art Initiative. They want to build off of last years Walleye Tournament and would like to expand and help the City brand themselves. The group is hoping for a more enhanced experience for travelers coming to Marinette area.

Large metal fish scupltures would be placed in flower pots throughout the City helping to recognize Marinette as a waterfront area and part of a larger project called Trout and About. There were 100 Walleye sculptures from last year along with 14 flower pots. They will add 200 Trout this year and an additional 14 pots. Local artists will paint the pots with an artistic flair.

All materials for the project were negotiated at cost or below to keep the cost down for the group, along with labor being donated.

The total cost of the project is $32,000 and DMAG is asking for a one time request of $8,800 to assist in recouping some of the cost of the project.

Brian Walters, Volunteer Assistant Wrestling Coach presented for the Marinette Youth Wrestling Team to bring a Wrestling Tournament to Marinette.

There would be four teams from Wisconsin and four teams from Michigan resulting in a two night hotel stay for those attending and participating.

The teams would each bring 20 to 25 wrestlers along with cheerleaders and managers. There could be a potential of 800 to 1,200 people attending the tournament, including local residents. The tournament will consist of teams building their program and bringing full teams.

The Wrestling team already had a bowling fund raiser this past year, raising $2,800 and there are plans in the works for more fundraisers, sponsorships and plans to sell advertising space.

A one time request is being asked for new wrestling mats at a cost of between $5,500 and $6,000 for the one inch mats and are a lower quality practice mat. The better quality 2 to 3 inch mats used in matches are of higher quality and cost between $8,000 to $12,000.

This is a one time request for funding but will be an investment in the Youth Wrestling Program that Walters is going to continue to expand along with the tournament being a yearly event.

In ending, Citizen and former Mayor of Marinette, Doug Oitzinger asked for permission to speak, saying "The selection process should recognize both events and activities and hotel stays, referred to as "heads and beds". "Events and activities have an indirect affect with heads and beds with a direct affect. If the City looks nice, it will also draw tourism".

Oitzinger also added, if you choose to spend all the allocated money in the first grant cycle then you just don't have a second cycle until next year. You don't have to have a second cycle if you choose to use the full amount of the budget upfront.


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