Enterprise City Council approved all four requests for Transient Lodging Tax grants to promote tourism within city limits at the regular city council meeting Monday, Oct. 8.
Applicants for this round of awards were Wallowa County Athletic Network, GEMS Winterfest Celebration, Fishtrap Fireside Program and the Wallowa Valley Community Ice Rink. All applicants were awarded the full $2,000 grant.
The Wallowa County Athletic Network is raising money for a variety of recreational projects around the county, including the proposed $450,000 indoor facility at Jensen Field in Enterprise. This grant money is earmarked for repositioning the left field fence in order to begin construction of the facility while still allowing for baseball games outdoors when the facility is complete.
GEMS (Greater Enterprise Main Streets group) approached the city for assistance in meeting their budget of $3,800 for the annual Winterfest Celebration. The all-volunteer, merchant-supported event drew approximately 350 people to the downtown area last year. Primary costs include lights for 15 trees and the gazebo on the courthouse lawn, as well as the cost of installation, insurance and advertising.
Fishtrap, Inc. requested the grant to support their popular Fishtrap Fireside program, which costs approximately $7,000 per year. Fishtrap covers $4,961 of the amount through general operating funds, sponsorships, donations and in-kind support.
Fireside is hosted at the Fishtrap House in Enterprise the first Friday of every month from October through April and provides platform for local writers to share their work. The event draws approximately 50 to 60 people every first Friday.
The Wallowa Valley Community Ice Rink is gearing up for another winter season, from mid-December through February, and continues to make small improvements every year. The group plans to spend the grant money on a shed to house rental skates. The plan is to rent a shed from DJ Jannuzzi for three months. In addition, the group intends to improve the fencing around the rink. The chain link fencing borrowed from the fairgrounds is very difficult to erect and tear down. They now want to have their own fence of a different design that is easier for volunteers to handle.
The ice rink draws 40 to 50 people per day on Saturdays and Sundays. The group estimates that on any given weekend day, 15 of those visitors are from out of town. They estimate the rink is used by 30 people per day on weekdays.