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Tourism approves museum funding requests

Vernon Tourism Advisory Board members unanimously approved funding requests for the Red River Valley Museum and the Wilbarger County Historical Museum during a monthly business meeting Tuesday.
Both museums were awarded funding of $20,000 each. The Red River Valley Museum plans to use the funding toward a second phase project to redesign the Bond, Wright Family galleries and the Betty King Wright Art Gallery. The Wilbarger County Historical Museum will use its funding toward improvement/renovation projects including installation of a new heating/air conditioning system, the power washing of a stairwell, north wing and upstairs area along with prep work for painting; repair and paint of west elevation of museum, and repairs to roof slope, east roof and soffit of main entrance along with repairs to stockade fencing.
The motion to approve the funding for both museums was made by Carolyn Randel and seconded by Jim Gryseels.
Board members approved a motion to purchase an advertisement from The Vernon Record for the upcoming Vernon Community Guide advertisement for $5,300 on the first two inside pages of the publication, set to be published and released in time for Summer’s Last Blast in August. The motion to approve the advertisement was made by Gryseels and seconded by Randel.
Board members approved the 2019 forms for hotel/motel tax funding requests to be filled out by event coordinators for funding requests for which the application deadline is set for May 31 to be considered for funding during the annual hotel/motel tax hearing set for June 12. Motion on the form to be used this year was made by Randel and seconded by Jim Surber.
In other action, board members approved an amended budget subject to final approval by the Vernon city commission, minutes of the March 19 meeting and advertising/promotional purchases including 200 tabletop tents and 20 posters. They also reviewed a financial report.
Tourism Director Amanda Lehman reported that some 470 surplus hibiscus plants grown at the Texas A&M AgriLife Research Center were distributed last week to local businesses, institutions, schools for re-planting as part of a beautification project. She said this is a first step that will ultimately lead to hibiscus plants being placed at local hotels and downtown businesses in a long-term effort toward promoting Vernon as the world’s “hibiscus capitol.”
Present at the meeting were Lehman, board chairman Gary Branin and board members Randel, Gryseels and Surber. Also present were Preston Cary of the Wilbarger County Historical Museum, Clint McCormick of the Vernon Record and City Manager Marty Mangum.

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