By Lasca Randels
WARSAW — Funding requests were approved for several organizations at the Kosciusko County Convention, Recreation & Visitor Commission (KCCRVC) meeting Wednesday, Nov. 10.
Nick Hauck, vice president of Kosciusko County Velo (KCV) Cycling Club, and Greg Demopoulos, co-founder of KCV, requested $22,400 to be used toward the 2022 Fat & Skinny Tire Fest after a two-year hiatus (A downsized version of the festival was held this year, referred to as Fat & Skinny 16.5).
When asked if attendance has decreased, remained steady or increased since the initial festival, Hauck and Demopoulos said 2019 was a record year. The number of participants in the critical mass ride jumped from the previous record number of 580 to over 800, and all road racing events were sold out.
Commission member Mark Skibowski said he thinks the Fat & Skinny Tire Fest is a great event and pointed out that Hauck and Demopoulos have been good stewards of money in the past.
The request was approved.
Chad Briscoe’s request for $5,000 to promote the 2022 NCCAA Basketball Championships at Grace College was approved 4-1.
Briscoe, director of athletics at Grace College, said 16 teams from across the country will participate in the tournament, which will be held March 15-19.
KCCRVC Secretary Jo Paczkowski recommended granting $3,000 rather than $5,000.
Briscoe said unlike other tournaments, teams come and stay for a five-day period, generating revenue for the county.
Tammy Kratzer, Kathy Ray, Mark Skibowski and John Hall voted to approve the $5,000 funding request, with Paczkowski voting against it.
Lilly Center Director Dr. Nate Bosch and Assistant Director Alex Hall requested funds for three areas. They asked for $10,000 for operational support, $5,715 for Clearly Kosciusko and $9,000 for the 2022 Lakes Festival. All requests being approved.
The commission approved a request by Chuck McLaughlin, representing Lake City Skiers, for $7,703.28 to be used toward payments for a loan the club took out to purchase new motors.
McLaughlin said the club had a great season in 2021.
“It really became apparent more this year than any other year that we are becoming a big tourist attraction here,” McLaughlin said.
Lake City Skiers also have pending records with Guinness World Records. Updates can be found on the Chain of Records Facebook page.
In other matters, Kosciusko County Convention & Visitors Bureau CEO Jill Boggs provided a CVB update.
According to information from Destination Analysts, as of Nov. 1, the outlook for travel is positive, with 83% of Americans having trips planned in the next three months.
Boggs said that despite a strong desire to travel, the main thing holding people back at this point is not the pandemic but high prices.
In other matters:
- Funds in the amount of $37,000 for operational support were approved for the City-County Athletic Complex (CCAC).
- An agreement with Kosciusko County Convention & Visitors Bureau for 2022 was approved.
- An inter-local agreement with the county auditor’s office for 2022 was approved.
- KCCRVC Meeting Dates in 2022 are: Jan. 12, March 9, May 11, July 13, Sept. 14 and Nov. 9.