Monday, April 6, 2009

Report on Annual Meeting and Celebration

From President Joe Tempel:

I just wanted to thank everyone for attending a successful Annual Meeting and 10 Year Celebration. Twenty-one people attended the Annual Meeting and about 60 people attended the Celebration. We raised almost $1,000 from the Silent Auction so congratulations to everyone— especially Holly Tempel for organizing it and Kathy Filgo for assisting.

We appreciate all those who donated the many auction items in an impressive display. The party food prepared by Betsy Martinson and Steve Friesen of the Buffalo Bill Museum was fantastic too! We hope to use them to cater future events! (Here's Steve, Joe, and Don in discussion before the meeting. Unfortunately our photographer failed to capture photos of the party!) (Click to enlarge any image.)

Thanks to Cyd Pougiales for designing and producing 50 Lariat Loop hats, some of which were handed out to paid-up members of the Lariat Loop Heritage Alliance. Here's Cyd cajoling partners to renew their memberships, and offering hats to those who do!

We want to thank the Rocky Mountain Quilt Museum for hosting our Annual Meeting and the Foothills Art Center for hosting our Celebration. We especially thank Brenda Ohlschwager, the Director of the Quilt Museum, and Riley Sanborn, the Director of the Art Center. I think it was the most colorful setting ever for a Lariat Loop meeting because of all of the beautiful quilts surrounding us! We also got to be the first to experience the blockbuster of a show at the Foothills Art Center that opened to the general public the next evening. [Here's Joe discussing our new display panels.]

Awards: A framed photograph of Morrison and Red Rocks was presented to Sally Pearce for Enthusiastically supporting the Lariat Loop Scenic and Historic Byway. A Lariat Loop Lassie Award was presented to Susan Baird for supporting us from our beginning as a Heritage Area. Sally was there to receive her award, and we will hand-deliver Susan's award next week.

Sally Pearce also updated us on plan's for the National Byway Conference to be held in Denver in August. It will include four field trips to the Lariat Loop on August 24th, so we need to start planning for those. They will be an excellent opportunity to show off the Loop to Byway enthusiasts from all over the United States.

Marketing and Image: We also focused our discussion on re-evaluating our current logo and tagline. Karen Meyer produced about 20 different logos for us to review and comment on. Each of us received 5 pins to push into the logo(s) we liked best. The logo that received the highest number of votes (18) was the one portraying the mountains (in three colors) with a road running up into the mountains.
The next highest number of votes (15) went to our existing logo. Finally, the logo portraying the mountains (in one color) with the roads running into and down from the mountains, conveying more of a “loop” received 6 votes. Eleven people liked one or more of the logos portraying the lariat prominently. I think we all agreed upon the idea that the Loop is the best thing going for tourists and residents in the Denver Metro Area wishing to experience the mountains and historic towns just west of Denver. I will ask Karen to further refine the logo(s) for our final approval with the following elements: The words “Lariat Loop” in a simple to read typeface; the mountains with a road; a lariat that wraps the logo.

There was no real consensus on the slogan or signature image, but we appreciate the feedback received. The historic postcards of the pillars at Morrison and at Golden, the Lariat Trail postcard used for the invitation, and the “Mountain Parks Girl” continue to be favorites of the group. One item under discussion is reprinting a few postcards in the future. (Click if you'd like to see a bigger image.)

Businesses along the Loop—and their customers— are interested in what we do and in supporting our efforts. We are developing free-standing brochure stands to display the Loop brochure at businesses and museums/visitor centers. We also hope to encourage people to use this blog to discuss ways to collaborate with each other and to post upcoming events and activities. We will be a stronger organization if we do.

The goal of all of this marketing discussion is to position ourselves to submit a grant application to the Colorado Tourism Board sometime in June to fund our marketing plan for the Loop. We will be scheduling additional meetings with anyone interested in helping finalize our marketing plan.

Again, thanks to all who helped make Thursday's events such a success. It was wonderful to see everyone and get together to discuss accomplishments and plans.

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