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City seeks comments on lavender memorandum
City staff met with Sequim’s top lavender groups in separate meetings on Friday, Feb. 17, to establish a joint plan for promoting Sequim’s Lavender Weekend.
Both the Sequim Lavender Growers Association, operators of Sequim Lavender Festival, and the Sequim Lavender Farmers Association, operators of Sequim Lavender Farm Faire, discussed permit conditions and solutions for clearing up any confusion about there being two lavender events.
The city issued a mandatory list of items for the groups. Some of the items include:
• A coordinated shuttle bus system
• Staffing for information booths that equally promote all lavender events
• Associations’ websites and promotional materials to promote Sequim Lavender Weekend with a link on their home pages going to the city’s Lavender Weekend page as a central site for visitors
• Each association to assist the city in signage, verbal directions and information to promote the Lavender Weekend.
The city is committed to pay for certain costs incurred by the events such as staff time and setup with lodging tax funds.
The growers’ estimated cost is $16,142 and the farmers’ cost is $19,423. If a group chooses not to agree to the conditions, then it will need to take on these costs and possibly face not receiving a permit in the future.
Barbara Hanna, city communications and marketing director, said the groups and the city won’t do a co-op advertising campaign but instead use those funds, if they sign a commitment, to promote an event map brochure with all the lavender information and some community events.
Feedback from the associations to the city is due by Friday, Feb. 24, and the groups have an April 1 deadline to turn in their permit applications.
Representatives of the farmers association maintain their stance that they are ready to sign with the city.
Steve Ragsdale, president of SLFA, said the proposal provides all of the elements required to ensure a successful and enjoyable weekend for visitors to the events.
“The plan completely accommodates the needs of the visitor, local businesses and the associations,” he said.
Paul Jendrucko, media relations representative for the growers group, said they plan to give their comments on Friday.
Jendrucko said the growers prefer to keep deliberations private and progressive as possible because there are a lot of issues to consider.
He said they’ve adhered to city codes the past 15 years.
“As agreed, we will deliver to the city a written response expressing our thoughts, ideas and recommendations to its proposals,” Jendrucko said. “The growers have been doing this for a long time.”