By Ron Munden
The two tourism murals installed by the CVB continue to fade as does the memories of Marshall’s failed tourism project.
I worked on the initial phase of the tourism project – selecting a consultant to develop a plan, coordinating the development of the plan and ensuring that the plan was approved by the City Commission. The effort started in 2006 and continued until the mid-2007.
Even though there was a constant battle between then City Manager Frank Johnson and the Task Force members were able to get the plan adopted in its entirety by the City Commission in mid-2007. On the night the City Commission approved the plan, Frank Johnson disbanded the Task Force. Firing all the member of the Task Force. This ended my and most other members of the Task Force involvement with Marshall Tourism Project. The tourism consultants recommended a six-month transition period for the management of the project to transition from the task force to the Brand Development Committee to ensure project continuity. Mr. Johnson action ensured that there was no transition and therefore a complete loss of continuity. In my opinion this was a fatal mistake.
Understandably the BDC got off to a slow start however by 2010 they were providing entertainment at the Civic Center and in the Downtown area.