June 2019 Meeting Minutes

The BGALA June meeting was hosted by Beech Bend on Tuesday, June 11, 2019.

Treasurer report from Alisha Dalrymple: BGALA current balance is $20,000, and not all dues have been paid. Expenditures for June were $172 at Pub by Novo for the board meeting lunch. Expenditures for May were $80 at Smokey Bones for the board meeting lunch, $100 at Oak Tree Awards for the Hospitality Olympics trophies, and $180 at Wal-Mart for gift cards for Hospitality Olympics awards. $500 was donated to the Alzheimer’s Association.

ATTRACTION REPORTS:

CVB: Sherry Murphy deferred to Janet Henderson, who reported that her busy car event season is starting. She thanked the attractions and hotels with marquees that could be used for welcome signs for these major events. Janet mentioned Hot Rod Reunion, Tri-Five, and Corvette Caravan prep city-wide. Any BGALA member who doesn’t have the 2019 signature auto events rack card printed by the CVB, please see Janet. She mentioned the “Welcome to BG” signs that were discussed at the April meeting for lobbies and entrances. Instead of doing posters on easels, the CVB plans to purchase retractable pull-up banners. Janet asked for feedback on what they should say–“Welcome to Bowling Green”…”Welcome, Cruisers”…do they need to be more generic so they can be used throughout the year for other events as well? Please let her know your thoughts since the CVB plans to purchase 20 of these for BGALA member use. Janet will also be attending 6 marketplaces/trade shows in the next fiscal year–she will be sharing the calendar of those events at the next meeting. Hotels who are interested in participating/attending these events with her, please contact her for more details–there are usually 2-3 other seats available at booths/pods. The hotels would be responsible for paying airfare, lodging, and the cost to attend. Janet will regularly be providing hotels with the USBs filled with leads from appointments/meetings/contacts after attending the shows.

Sloan Convention Center: Jessica Warren reported. Hot Rod Reunion will be having parking lot parties this week. CamaroFest and Tri-Five are filling up quickly. The Kentucky Jailers finished their summer conference last week and love the city. The Convention Center is hosting an MMA fight on June 29. Bowling Green Church is hosting services there a couple days a week. If anyone has contacts that are interested in using Convention Center space to bring an event to Bowling Green, please let Jessica and the sales team know. Hilarie Wade is no longer at the Plaza, she has taken a job at another Atrium Hospitality hotel.

Lost River Cave: Tours are picking back up and it’s wedding season. There will be a community Butterfly Celebration on Sunday, June 23 from 1-4pm at the Butterfly Habitat. Yoga in the Cave is July 18. There’s a zipline special for weekday discounts going on right now. LRC staff handed out the zipline discount posters and offered to drop off more for any BGALA member.

Historic RailPark & Train Museum: Jamie Johnson reported that USO Bowling Green event invitations and flyers are out. This is the RailPark’s annual fundraiser this year, happening August 29-31. Tickets have already been selling for the Caravan nights and here’s the link. The RailPark is continuing with its Save the Depot Poster Reveals each month. The June poster was revealed last week in conjunction with a Kids on the Block puppet show for over 100 kids. All are invited to the next poster reveal on July 2, featuring a Red Cross Blood Drive from 11am-3pm. Please come give blood! The RailPark is hosting the inaugural Bowling Green Wine Festival hosted by the Kentucky Winery Association and operators of Purple Toad Winery. The festival is July 13 from 11am-6pm, tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the door. Bingo at the Depot is another new event coming up July 18 with live bingo for big prizes. Bingo tickets are on sale here. Ask Khristian Irvin about prizes and donations! The RailPark is offering Unseen Bowling Green Downtown Haunted Walking Tours for major car events and clubs, plus during Corvette Caravan.

National Corvette Museum and MSP: No report.

Today’s featured speaker was Charlotte Gonzalez from Beech Bend Amusement Park & Raceway. The park had an excellent opening to the season thanks to more than 4 times the sales of season passes for the year. The park held a 1/2 off price sale in the Fall and saw tremendous returns. The park has lost 2 full operational days from rain and there was a large fire that consumed the trash loader. This is the first year Charlotte hasn’t had one of her children working at the park, so she introduced us to Danielle Gonzalez, her daughter-in-law, who will be helping out with operations this season. Charlotte invited BGALA members to bring their staff and families to the park–she is giving at least ten 1/2 off admission tickets to all meeting attendees to take back to their staff, along with new park brochures and a couple of comp park passes.

NEW BUSINESS:

Dharmi set up the Walk to End Alz link for the BGALA team and sent to members. Please sign up and encourage your staff to participate.

The BGALA board would like to donate to BGALA member non-profit attractions in need. These attractions are layers of tourism that make Bowling Green a destination and keep heads in hotel beds longer.

Lost River Cave was closed down for 30 days this season due to rain and a gas leak, losing revenue from its bread and butter tour sales. BGALA board proposed donating $1,000 to Lost River Cave to help support its Butterfly Habitat. The vote passed unanimously. Rho Lansden thanked BGALA for the support, sharing that the Butterfly Habitat’s annual cost is about $18,000, considering butterflies cost $4.50-7.00 each and must be replenished in the house every 10 or so days during the spring and summer. BGALA will be added to the donor plaque list at the Butterfly Habitat and LRC will host a private butterfly release event for BGALA members.

The RailPark is in need of more funding to keep its doors open over the next couple of years. BGALA has been hearing reports of its Save the Depot campaign initiatives all year. BGALA board proposed donating $1,000 to the RailPark as a presenting event sponsor for its Haunted Lantern Tours in October, which is its next large fundraising event post-Corvette Caravan that would give BGALA members the chance to attend and represent the association. The vote passed unanimously.

The next meeting will be held Tuesday, July 9, at Holiday Inn University Plaza.

About the Author: Telia Butler