The city of Hermiston is looking for community input in developing a long-range strategic plan for the continued development of the Eastern Oregon Trade & Event Center (EOTEC).
There are several outreach opportunities for the public, including an online survey. All survey participants will be entered to win a $50 Visa gift card, or family passes to the Hermiston Family Aquatic Center.
“If you don’t know where you’re going, then any road will get you there,” said Hermiston City Manager Byron Smith. “We want to use this process to get a clear message from the community about what the EOTEC facility should look like 10 years from now, and that will allow us to avoid short-sighted opportunities which may compromise our path toward the community’s ultimate goal.”
The city, in partnership with the EOTEC Advisory Committee, wants to engage everyone from the community, as well as visitors from across the region. The strategic plan will utilize information from community members, EOTEC customers, and other facility users to identify shared community goals and priorities regarding future events, facility use, marketing, and policies.
The EOTEC opened its doors on Aug. 7, 2017 after more than 60 years of public discussion about moving the Umatilla County Fair out of downtown Hermiston. The 75-acre EOTEC site was purchased by the city in 1984 for the purposes of thoughtfully growing the community by relocating the fairgrounds out of the city’s core. In 2010, Umatilla County and the city of Hermiston established the EOTEC as a joint venture to provide a venue for family, sports, rodeo, fair, conventions, and other events. In 2018, the city of Hermiston assumed full control of the EOTEC, with the Umatilla County Fair and Farm-City Pro Rodeo as long-term anchor tenants.
“We’re very pleased to continue our long-standing relationships with the fair and the rodeo,” Smith said. “This strategic plan will help us identify how we best go about growing the facility in a way that ensures long-term success of those two users while attracting and expanding upon others.”