Desert Messenger

February 6, 2013

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February 6, 2013 Quartzsite Futures Dying Quartzsite??? Submitted by Laura Bruno Interim Quartzsite Town Manager Quartzsite is not dying…the generation of people who have been coming to Quartzsite and spending three to six months here are the ones passing on. We are like every other community that hosts winter visitors…we are in a generational change. The upcoming generation of winter visitors is the "Baby Boomers" who have nice rigs, lots of toys and the need to be entertained. We saw large crowds of visitors this January who came to experience and spend lots of money. Then they leave, looking for the next site for entertainment and fun. In order to keep the extended season alive, communities that have become hosts to winter visitors are now finding they need to develop better ways to entice multiple groups of visitors to stop in and experience their town over a longer period of time. The other issue is our vendors. I hear so many say that vendors are not coming because the Town is not good to vendors. I know of no reason for this. Not only have the Town's rates for vendor permits stayed the same for years, the Town worked hard to reach out and welcome our vendors. Property owners, due to rising property taxes (which go to the County, not the Town) and the shortened season, may be raising their space rates to compensate for their loss of income. However, this is a landlord/tenant issue and has nothing to do with the Town. CK! WE'RE BA ation! Same Loc CRAFTS I believe the real reason that our vendor population is changing is the fact that, here again, we are seeing a shift from the older generation of mom and pop vendors who came for the season to enjoy the weather and do a little money making while here. The vendors of today are conducting a viable business. They have access to the internet and plan their year of selling, traveling the vendor circuit and pursuing opportunities to sell their wares. In my opinion, this is why we are not seeing the vast number of vendors setting up in October or November and staying for an extended period. In order to capture the different groups of baby boomers and visitors, as a Town we need to develop a multifaceted approach beginning with the diversification of events and spreading them out over an extended period of time. As we create events that will entice people to our community, the next challenge is how to promote what we are doing. The Town Council believes, and has put into motion, the creation of an economic development commission that focuses on brainstorming, supporting and promoting business and tourism ideas and events, all of which will be an asset and will greatly aid in putting us back on the map. There are already tangible ideas in the works to help promote next year's season: Hot Air Balloons, Camel and Ostrich Races, Off-Road Racing, and much more. These are just a few of the events that our Town's entrepreneurs are developing. The Town is doing its part to help facilitate these ideas, and we will continue to do so. Remember, not only does QUARTZSITE ROCK, it's WHERE THE SUN COMES TO PLAY! ARLENE'S & YARN Several New Items ~ We now have Sachet Yarn! We're looking forward to seeing all our friends and customers! Tyson Wells Space #11 • Arlene & Dale 605-390-6379 Page 11 ATTENTION DIABETICS on Medicare Please join CASA MEDICAL (A Participating Medicare Provider) Find Out How You Qualify for DIABETIC SHOES at no cost to you! (In Most Cases) IN QUARTZSITE WEDNESDAY, FEB. 20TH QUARTZSITE SENIOR CENTER • DINING HALL 11:00am - 12 noon QUARTZSITE IMPROVEMENT ASSOC. QIA 1:30pm - 2:30pm Also Receive a FREE PAIR of Diabetic Socks when you sign up for a Complimentary Diabetic Foot Assessment and Diabetic Shoes Ask us about Pain Management Options NOW COVERED BY MEDICARE! The JStim System, a non-medicated, noninvasive treatment intended for the reduction of pain and symptoms of Osteoarthritis of the knee and Rheumatoid Arthritis of the hand. Back Support • With Adjustable Tension pulls designed to support the back and cut down on pain by keeping back in place. CASA MEDICAL 480-941-9493 Accredited by the Joint Commission 435274

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