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City Council OKs $55K shot-in-the-arm for Fourth of July celebration at Westworld of Scottsdale

Wimbledog event coming to Westworld of Scottsdale

Photo Westworld of Scottsdale
Westworld of Scottsdale is a part of the tourism machine that is the Scottsdale brand and can be found at 16601 N. Pima Road. (Photo by Arianna Grainey/
By Terrance Thornton | Digital Free Press

Scottsdale City Council has approved a $55,000 shot-in-the-arm for the upcoming Fourth of July celebration held at Westworld of Scottsdale.

Approved at the local governing board’s final public hearing in May, resolution No. 12481 provides up to $55,000 in funding — dollars derived from the current fiscal year Tourism Development Fund budget — to M Culinary, LLC, producers of the local event.

The unanimous vote came during City Council’s consent agenda, at City Hall, 3939 N. Drinkwater Blvd., Tuesday, May 17.

Photo of Westworld of Scottsdale
A view the horse public art installation found on the grounds of Westworld of Scottsdale.

“M Culinary, LLC, producer of the Scottsdale Fourth of July Celebration has requested up to $55,000 in tourism development funds to purchase fireworks for the Scottsdale Fourth of July Celebration and a new Wimbledog Event that will be incorporated into the Scottsdale Fourth of July Celebration,” said Scottsdale Tourism Development Manager Steve Geiogamah in his report to City Council. “M Culinary, LLC is a subcontractor of National Western Capital Corporation, which is a city contractor. M Culinary, LLC receiving tourism funds is not inconsistent with NWCC’s contract with the city.”

Mr. Geiogamah offers the Fourth of July celebration is one meant to offer a family friendly event to the community all while inside an air-conditioned respite from the brutal sizzling summer months.

“The Scottsdale Fourth of July event at WestWorld was developed to bring a family friendly event to Scottsdale,” he explained. “The ninth annual event will feature family entertainment and one of the largest fireworks show in Arizona.”

Also, this year will be the inaugural Wimbledog event, which appeared on NBC’s America’s Got Talent.

“This new event will also promote Scottsdale as a dog-friendly city and will provide complimentary vendor space for Scottsdale-based shelters and feature Scottsdale dog-friendly businesses,” Mr. Geiogamah said. “The long-term vision is to grow the Wimbledog Event into a stand-alone event that will enhance Scottsdale’s overall image and increase national visibility for Scottsdale as one of the ‘Dog Friendliest’ cities in the U.S.”

The Tourism Development Commission provided a recommendation vote on this item during its April 15 meeting, records show.

Horse statues at Westworld of Scottsdale

Cost-benefit analysis

Those discussions at the commission level provided a deeper dive into the cost-benefit associated with the funding request, Mr. Geiogamah offered in his report.

“Providing tourism development funds in support of the Scottsdale Fourth of July event will provide an opportunity to grow the celebration and provide something to do for visitors already here,” he said of hopes for return on investment.

“The Scottsdale Fourth of July Celebration will provide a local market reach of over 16.4 million people through news coverage and 320,000 consumer impressions provided through local broadcasts and social media. Scottsdale residents will receive 50% off the general admission viewing lots and the producer will create hotel packages with discounts for attendees booking nights in Scottsdale properties.”

The funding request will cover the cost of:

  • $30,000 for fireworks.
  • $25,000 for the Wimbledog Event.

Mr. Geiogamah reports the cost-to-benefit ratio is favorable.

“City staff has evaluated the proposal to identify the benefits for the city and the local tourism industry and has identified a public purpose for the city’s expenditure,” he said. The marketing and promotional benefits provide direct consideration substantially equal to the proposed city’s expenditure.”

(Photo by Arianna Grainey/
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