|An illustration of a raptor on Main Street was presented to the College of Eastern Utah's Prehistoric Museum board to demonstrate the idea of using a dinosaur theme to draw attention to Price's downtown businesses.|
Two presentations to the board of the College of Eastern Utah Prehistoric Museum lastThursday introduced several promotional ideas and marketing concepts to local civic leaders.
While the presentations were not connected, the ideas and concepts seemed to go hand in hand, addressing efforts to make Price a destination community with a center.
The first presentation was done by Dave O'Brien. He represented Carbon County Small Business Alliance at last.
CCSB was formed earlier in the year by a group of local business owners to find ways to promote the area. The group's members include O'Brien, Sam Farlaino, Tony Basso, Neil Breinholt, Frank Peczuh, Angelo Kiahtipes and Jerry Carlson.
O'Brien joined many of the concepts that have been batted around business circles for years, from branding the community to leading tourists into the center of town.
"We can find ways to get people off the bypass road and onto Main Street," pointed out O'Brien. "What we are missing is some marketing opportunities for what we already have in the community."
Finding a center - a place that can bring people into town - is important, added O'Brien. The local community has actually had a center for a long time - the CEU Prehistoric Museum.
In the presentation, O'Brien pointed out that the advertising is good from some points of entry into the local community.
Signs in Utah County on U.S. Highway 6 and along the route down Price Canyon for the museum and Nine Mile Canyon are good, noted O'Brien. Coming from Emery County on Utah State Road 10, there is also some good advertising. But on the eastern route from the Colorado direction, the marketing approach has been non-existent.
In terms of traffic, O'Brien said the eastern approach into the county actually handles more vehicles than the route coming from the west.
However, the CCSB proposes to change the situation with a series of signs and drawings designed to attract more visitors to the museum and the businesses in downtown Price.
One of the group's proposals is to use the dinosaur theme strongly in the marketing of the area, possibly using a series of "raptors" both in signs and figures in various areas to attract people to town.
But even with marketing and branding, traffic flow traveling through the town will head in the direction of the wrong places if steps aren't taken to draw people into the local business areas.
"The original intent of some of the rerouting of traffic when the bypass was built was for truck traffic, not for regular traffic," said O'Brien. "We need to change that."
Suggestions for accomplishing the goal included the following:
Changing the entrance to Price Main Street from the west by drawing people off the overpass through the railroad underpass where U.S. 6 used to come into town.
Using private properties around the city that border the main throughfares to advertise all the local services and the museum.
Once the county ambulance garage has been relocated, using the lot as an overnight recreational vehicle parking area.
Possibly placing a gallery at the site to display local artist Gary Prazen and others work in the town. Another feature that may be added in two intersections downtown could be centerpieces featuring Prazen's work as well.
The other group that made a presentation is a marketing company called the ThinkTank Creative Consortium. They also suggested new marketing techniques because they think people just don't understand what Price has to offer.
"It is our belief that many Utah residents, in addition to out of state tourists, are simply unfamiliar with everything that Price has to offer," the group said in it's presentation materials. "By making this potentially vast audience aware of stellar destination attractions, such as Nine Mile Canyon, the San Rafael Swell, Goblin Valley State Park, and historic Helper."
The company largely feels that visibility is important, and they presented materials to the group that promoted this idea. A series of signs, figures and wraps around town and within sight of the entrances to Price is key to the ideas.