Applicants present to Hotel/Motel Tax Board

Projects vying for funding from the Hotel/Motel Tax Board met on Thursday night to present their plans during a public meeting at the City Hall of Webster City.

The Art in Boone River Country subcommittee of the Take PRIDE in Webster City committee is seeking $5,500 for next year’s “Arts R Alive in Webster City” Sculpture Event. The subcommittee had received funds from the Hotel/Motel tax for the first three years of the Sculpture Event. This year’s request is the second smallest, with $6,000 requested in 2011, $5,200 requested in 2012 and $6,400 requested in 2013.

The three day Sculpture Event will showcase up to 10 sculptures to be displayed from Aug. 6 to Aug. 8 at West Twin Park in Webster City. The Sculpture Event features public voting for a people’s choice award and a guest judge will rank their favorites. Previously, David Boelter of Buena Vista University has judged for the event. In 2014, the grant application said the Sculpture Event will feature a joint effort with students from Buena Vista and other students to place their sculptures in May before they leave for summer break.

Money from the grant, if given, will be used to purchase materials for the Student Summer Sculpture Workshop, cement for four new pads, signs for the sculpture bases and a portion of the artist stipends.

A new organization is also seeking grant money. The Help Entertain and Restore Organization, HERO, is seeking $11,300 to “Save the Webster Theater.” The grant money is being requested to help purchase the location and file the paperwork for the organization to become a 501(c)3 nonprofit. The grant application said HERO is in the process of making a bid for the building. $10,000 will go toward the purchase of the building and the $1,300 remainder will go toward becoming a nonprofit.

The organization also seeks to upgrade to digital equipment that includes 3D projection and open the theater under the direction of a nonprofit board with a full-time paid manager and paid part-time staff. They are also looking to complete repairs to the building. In total, the projected cost for all those items is $220,000 to fully refurbish and reopen the Webster Theater.

The Keep Iowa Beautiful Local Committee is seeking $1,000 to host their annual conference in the Sampson Room at Fuller Hall on May 7, 2014 a service project on May 6 to plant native flowers on a local trail.

A Kendall Young Library project to add editions of The Daily Freeman-Journal from 1923-2011 to the library’s recently opened digital archives is also seeking funding. The library’s first request from the board is seeking $10,000 out of $38,766 to add those editions to the archives.

The grant application for the project said the library has had microfilm of those editions available at the library. However, the medium is difficult to use and not as widely accessible as the internet. Currently, the library has digitized the Webster City Tribune from 1886 to 1917, The Jewell Record from 1895 to 1922, The Williams Wasp from 1898 and The Daily Freeman-Journal from 1857-1922.

The $10,000 request will provide the library enough funding to digitize The Daily Freeman-Journal from 1923 to 1970. The rest will be added through other funding sources. The Kendall Young Library Digital Archives can be accessed at

The Webster City Rampage minor league football team is seeking a grant to help fund a 2014 season. The team began operations in 2009 and played for the 2010 to 2012 seasons. It was shuttered for the 2013 season as players competed with other teams. However, the grant application states the players are ready to continue representing Webster City.

For the 2014 season, The Rampage intends to be in the Southern Plains Football League, based out of Southern Minnesota. The league is would like to add The Rampage and another team to its current eight team roster, according to the grant application. Of those teams, all are located in Minnesota except for the North Iowa Bucks in Forest City.

The Rampage is transitioning to becoming a nonprofit organization. Their application states that this means the team will not mainly rely on sponsors and ticket sales to operate. Rather, The Rampage plans to offer free admission to all home games.

The team is requesting $5,235 to help with expenses for the 2014 season. That would pay for five home games which includes the fees associated in playing with the league, field paint, labor and equipment to paint the filed, the cost of having five referees at the game and promotional media materials such as posters.

More information on The Rampage can be found at, on Facebook and on Twitter @FearTheHorn.

Another previous recipient of Hotel/Motel Tax funding is asking for grant money. The Webster City Community Theatre is requesting funding to host Camp Creamery for another year and for publicity costs.

Camp Creamery is a weeklong summer workshop for children interested in theatre. The camp is designed to give children ages seven and up an opportunity to work with professional actors, rehearse and perform a play for their family and friends. The tentative dates for Camp Creamery at the Webster City Community Theatre is July 28 to Aug. 2, 2014.

In total, the Theatre is asking for $5,543 from the board. Of that money, $1,911 is to be spent on the $3,000 total cost of hosting Camp Creamery and $3,632 is being requested to promote four productions for the 2013-2014 season. Those shows include “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever,” “The Dixie Swim Club,” “Moonlight and Magnolias” and “Guys and Dolls.”

Another request the board heard was from the Wilson Brewer Historic Park Committee to fund the park’s Information Center. The request for $15,476 would cover the operating expenses, publicity, cost of special events, security system, internet, office supplies and other expenses from May to November of 2014.

The board previously granted the committee $12,181.06 to operate the center from May through October this year.

Groups who received funding for projects last year through the Hotel/Motel tax also presented how their projects came to fruition. That included representatives from the Sculpture Event, the new Webster City website, the Webster City Community Theatre and Wilson Brewer Park.

Minutes from the Nov. 26 meeting of the board recommended that another previously funded project to install a ramp at the Jane Young House located adjacent to Kendall Young Library be given another year to be completed.