As Park City special events grow, a panel is formed to study impacts | ParkRecord.com

As Park City special events grow, a panel is formed to study impacts

Jay Hamburger THE PARK RECORD

Are there too many events of one sort or another scheduled in Park City?

And how did the events go?

Those are some of the questions a newly formed City Hall panel will address as it delves into the impacts, both positive and negative, of Park City’s busy calendar of special events. Park City leaders recently created what is known as the Special Events Advisory Committee.

Park City has long been a preferred location for special events and they are important to the resort-driven economy. Large ones like the Sundance Film Festival generate lots of publicity, but there are numerous smaller ones throughout the year that sometimes cause impacts as well.

Jason Glidden, the economic development project manager at City Hall, said the panel will study what is referred to as an event threshold. The members will delve into the number of events that are held in Park City and their category. The Special Events Advisory Committee will also craft recommendations about the municipal services that would be provided to events, he said. The group, meanwhile, will also provide feedback about the performance of an event.

Glidden said special events continue to grow in size as more people attend.

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"At what point do the negative impacts outweigh the positive benefits," he said.

According to City Hall, the municipal government in 2014 issued permits for 72 events covering 151 days. Some of the events overlapped, meaning that officials were regulating more than one event on the same day.

The events represent a wide range of categories, including sports and the arts. There may be a bicycling event on the trails or a performance during a music festival. One day may involve an event for food lovers while another day may bring runners together for a race.

City Hall on many occasions must provide services to ensure the events unfold without major problems. The Park City Police Department and the Public Works Department are two of the departments that are oftentimes heavily involved.

Still, Park City leaders see the community as an important player in the state’s special-event industry. They say special events provide a boost to business in Park City by attracting crowds staying in hotels, dining in restaurants and shopping in the stores. The events outside of ski season have been of special interest as they bring in crowds during what had been a down time of the year in the past.

A decade ago, Glidden said, City Hall wanted to attract events to Park City in an effort to diversify the economy. With the success over the past 10 years, Park City is able to be more selective as it considers events, he said.

The Special Events Advisory Committee will consist of representatives of organizations or businesses and at-large Parkites. Some of the organizations and businesses that will be involved include the Historic Park City Alliance, Mountain Trails Foundation, the Park City Chamber/Bureau, Park City Mountain Resort owner Vail Resorts, Deer Valley Resort the Park City Restaurant Association and the Park City Lodging Association. There will be four at-large Parkites appointed to the panel.

City Hall is accepting applications from people interested in serving as an at-large representative. They must be a Park City resident and cannot be a member of the organizations or businesses that have seats on the panel. City Hall wants the at-large members to reside in different neighborhoods.

Terms are for three years. Meetings will be scheduled on a quarterly basis with the first one anticipated to be held in June. Members do not receive compensation.

The deadline for applications is 5 p.m. on May 22. City Hall had received five applications by early in the week. Applications are available on the City Hall website, http://www.parkcity.org. Select ‘Special Events Advisory Committee Seeks Community Applicants’ in the News section of the front page. For more information, contact Jenny Diersen, a special events coordinator at City Hall, at jenny.diersen@parkcity.org.

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