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— Solutions for Bulldog Days and ideas for a truckand-tractor pull and ATV Rodeo were discussed at Monday’s Parks and Recreation Committee meeting.

Committee liaison Trip Lapham reported he had presented the idea of combining Bulldog Days with the Decatur Barbecue to the Chamber of Commerce last week.

“It was met with varying degrees of enthusiasm,” he said, explaining the financial aspect was the biggest concern.

Lapham also reported that this year’s Bulldog Days festival lost $1,308, citing heavy rains and chilly weather as a possible reason the festival didn’t bring in more revenue.

Mayor Bill Montgomery said he spoke to the people who owned the carnival which came to Bulldog Days this year about coming next year. The carnival will be busy with state fairs in August and will not be available near the time of the traditional Barbecue dates, he said. They will, however, be available on Labor Day Weekend.

Montgomery pointed out that September would be a good compromise on dates for combining the two events - it would be easier to get vendors and the weather would not be so hot.

Montgomery suggested getting musical entertainment through the carnival company and charging people a fee to park to increase revenue.

He also reported he has booked the hot air balloons for next year for whatever date the city chooses.

“Is there an advantage to combining events?” councilwoman Linda Martin asked.

“I don’t see an upside,” Ike Owens replied.

Jack Sprinkles commented that it’s not likely to get the Chamber of Commerce to change the Barbecue dates since it has been a Decatur tradition to hold the Barbecue on the first Friday in August for the past 50 years.

Owens also pointed out that on some years Gravette Days - traditionally held on the second Saturday in August - falls the day after the Decatur Barbecue, causing a conflict.

Kim Wilkins will be setting down for a one-on-one discussion about the possibility of combining Bulldog Days and the Decatur Barbecue with Chamber of Commerce members this week.

Lapham reported that he spoke with his brother-inlaw that is involved in truck-and-tractor-pull events and found that all the dates for next spring and summer have already been booked, except June 12.

Rick Tilley said the people in charge of the truckand-tractor-pull equipment would take care of most of the planning and promotion of the event. The committee would need to sell concessions and provide a tractor to smooth out ruts. They would also be in charge of planning the ATV Rodeo aspect of the event.

Montgomery suggested using a 20-acre piece of city property near the wastewater treatmentplant for the event.

Lapham said he will be further exploring the possibility of holding the truck and tractor pull and ATV rodeo by finding out what the people who own the equipment will need, what they will provide and how much it will cost the city.

The Parks and Recreation Committee will meet again at 6 p.m., Nov. 30, in the city council room.

News, Pages 1 on 11/11/2009

Print Headline: Committee discusses combining festivals

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