It’s been a busy year for the members of the Cambria Tourism Board, and their pace is about to kick into high gear for the foreseeable future, according to PowerPoint presentation given to Cambria Community Services District directors June 27.
Tourism board member Linda Finley told directors that the tourism board receives funds from a special assessment that lodgings in Cambria and other unincorporated areas of the county charge guests. That 2 percent of each bill is split between area boards and the county tourism board to promotes tourism, especially during the usual slow seasons (Sept. 15 through June 15) and mid-week periods.
The Cambria board serves the hospitality industry exclusively, Finley said, but other businesses in the community benefit when area lodgings do well. The board also works with local nonprofit groups to create programs and events that will bring visitors to stay in local lodgings.
Some of those funds will help the tourism board — and the business community it represents — participate in such tourist-attracting events as the Sunset Savor the Central Coast event Sept. 26 through 29, as well as county promotion of such entities as the Pacific Coast Wine Trail, or the Stewardship Traveler vacations, in which tourists help preserve the environment they’re visiting.
The county’s participation in the Stewardship Traveler program launches officially in August on www.winecoastcountry.com.
The all-volunteer members of the tourism board are: Chairman Bram Winter, Vice-Chairwoman Nancy Carr, Ken Cooper, Victoria Moreno, Pragna-Patel Mueller, Deborah Scarborough and Finley.
They represent, respectively, Cambria Pines Lodge, San Simeon Pines Seaside Resort, The Bluebird Inn, Victoria’s Last Resort, El Colibri Hotel and the Black Cat restaurant. Finley is a member at large. The board’s administrator is Julia Mitchell.
According to draft minutes of the tourism board’s June 11 meeting, the projected fund balance at the end of June was $583,084. A preliminary fiscal-year budget shows projected income for 2013-2014 at $321,744, providing total available funds of $904,828 through June 2014.
Expenses include outreach, events and marketing, ranging from a $400,000, two-year marketing contract with Multi-Marketing Corp. of Fresno to outreach grants that help such nonprofit-sponsored events and promotions as the Scarecrow Festival, Holidays in the Pines and a weather station and live webcam view of Cambria, all of which can help draw more people to town for longer stays.
“We’re ready and willing to help promote these kinds of events,” Finley said, “as long as they fit within our mission.”