Chris Norris, Owner, CJN Properties
"I'm honored to serve my 2nd term as chairman of the Visit Stillwater board of directors. The board members and employees are a dedicated team committed to enhancing the local visitor economy. Join me in voting "Yes!" for the Visitor Tax on February 8th."
Angela Paris, General Manager, Holiday Inn Hotel & Suites Stillwater - University West
"The Holiday Inn & Suites Stillwater - University West works very closely with the staff of Visit Stillwater to provide room block accommodations for groups meeting in our community. We support a "Yes!" vote for the Visitor Tax on February 8th so Visit Stillwater can expand their services to the hotel industry and help build athletics fields and facilities to attract more tournaments to Stillwater. With more support, we will also be better positioned to attract convention business Monday-Friday."
Casey Kendrick, General Manager, KWEM TV-31
"Please join me in voting YES! for the increased visitor tax on February 8th. The additional revenue will allow Visit Stillwater to do more to promote local businesses and events and add more fields for youth and adult recreation sports. I know my family would like to stay in Stillwater for more tournaments than traveling to and spending money in other communities throughout the year. I was visiting with a former board member who no longer has duties with Visit Stillwater. They told me 'Visit Stillwater truly is a great organization and the work they do is great for Stillwater.' Let's get behind Visit Stillwater in this initiative, which is really getting behind Stillwater as a whole."
Kevin So, OSU Associate Professor of Hospitality & Tourism Management
"Visit Stillwater, the official destination marketing organization (DMO) of Stillwater, plays a critical role in the development and marketing of Stillwater as a tourism destination. Widely recognized nationally and internationally, increasing travel and tourism activities in a destination enhances the quality of life for residents by creating employment opportunities, generating additional tax revenues for improvement of infrastructure and community services, and attracting businesses such as hotels, restaurants, shops, attractions, and cultural and sporting ventures that serve both visitors and residents, all contributing significantly to the local economy of Stillwater."
Tommy Shreffler, Director of Operations, OnCue Marketing
"At OnCue, we see a noticeable increase in sales when al types of events are occurring in our community. We want those events to keep coming so I'll be voting Yes! for the Visitor Tax
on February 8th."
Melissa Wiles, Owner, Whisper Intimate Apparel
"The staff at Whisper love working with Visit Stillwater! We are so grateful they highlight our business, as well as the Downtown shopping district, through their various media channels. I support growth for their development and amenities for the community by voting Yes! on February 8th!"
Doug Emde, Real Estate Appraiser
"As past chairman of Visit Stillwater, I know their efforts are why developers chose to build a convention center in Stillwater and applaud their efforts to make athletic facilities a reality. I encourage you to vote Yes! for the Visitor Tax on February 8th"
Blaire Atkinson, President, OSU Foundation
"As the vice-chair for Visit Stillwater, I see first-hand the positive impact our efforts make on the local economy and services provided to Stillwater businesses and events. Please join me and vote Yes! for the Visitor Tax on February 8th."
Michelle Wallace, Director of Sales, Fairfield Inn & Suites
"We depend on the marketing and sales provided by Visit Stillwater to fill the Fairfield Inn & Suites throughout the year. I support a Yes! vote on February 8th so we can provide more assistance to groups considering Stillwater as a host site location. Adding sports facilities, improving our current facilities, or considering other tourism amenities can also help us attract more visitors."
Glenna Craig, Payne County Clerk
"As the Payne County Clerk, and lifelong citizen of Stillwater/Payne County, I would like to extend my support for the upcoming Visitor Tax on the ballot February 2022. A Yes vote is a vote for the tax YOU never pay. This tax is paid by travelers staying at hotels, motels, or other vacation rentals in our community, but still a minimal increase to the lodging industry as a whole. A Yes vote will support our local economic recovery efforts by reinvigorating our economy to attract visitors new and returning to our beautiful community, supporting year-round tourism efforts, support new and returning attractions to our community, which support year-round employment. For all of these reasons and so many more, I encourage you to support this long-overdue increase that will help support our beautiful growing, and thriving community and the citizens who live here for years to come.
Senator Tom Dugger
"Visit Stillwater has been a consistently successful economic development engine for Stillwater. I look forward to their continued success with additional resources to bring in more visitors and to enhance and develop visitor amenities. I encourage you to vote Yes! on February 8th to enable us to expand our current efforts and generate more revenue for our community."
Nathan Anderson, Payne County Extension Director
"The agriculture industry is a major economic driver for our community - including the visitors that come to town annually for events at the Payne County Expo Center. The Visit Stillwater Board and staff recognize the importance of these ag events and are instrumental in recruiting them to our community."
Dustin MacDonald, Owner, Chris' University Spirit
"At Chris' University Spirit, we greatly benefit from Visit Stillwater's efforts to continually enhance visitor development for our community. I encourage you to vote Yes! for the Visitor Tax on February 8th."
Gloria Short, Director of Sales, Residence Inn by Marriott
"The Residence Inn by Marriott is thrilled with the prospect of Visit Stillwater having the resources to do even more to attract visitors to Stillwater. Inflation has increased a great deal over the past 36 years and it is past time for us to modernize the tax to generate additional revenue for visitor development efforts. We also look forward to hosting more events and groups throughout the year as well! I'll be voting YES! on February 8th"!
James Cowan, Payne County Assessor
"The Visit Stillwater team has been extremely effective in attracting visitors to our community and their efforts do not affect your property taxes. Join me in voting "Yes!" for the Visitor Tax to further benefit our community."
Matt Hull, Edward Jones
"We talked about the need for athletic facilities while I served on the Visit Stillwater board of directors several years ago. I'm so glad we've found a way to help make them a reality for our community and will vote "Yes!" for the Visitor Tax on February 8th."
Colin Campbell, Director, Payne County Expo Center
"“Both the Payne County Expo Center and Visit Stillwater serve as major contributors to local economic development efforts and also to our quality of life. We partner daily to retain current groups, attract new groups, and provide the best customer service possible to ensure successful events. The Visit Stillwater grant program has been instrumental in hosting events at our facility and Visit Stillwater relationships with local businesses and event coordinators across the region are of great benefit to our community. We work collectively to get event attendees out and about in our local retail stores and restaurants.”
Melissa Hubbard, Hampton Inn & Suites Stillwater West/Airport
"The Hampton Inn & Suites Stillwater West/Airport supports the vision of Visit Stillwater to attract more weekday and weekend groups to our community. We will vote "Yes!" for the Visitor Tax on February 8th to keep groups in Stillwater and encourage additional groups in our community. We also support the construction of additional athletics facilities to keep local dollars in Stillwater and bring in overnight visitors who participate in multiple day tournaments."
Representative John Talley
"I've had the pleasure to work with the Visit Stillwater team in several manners over the years. I've seen their efforts pan out first-hand to recruit events to Stillwater that enhanced our local economy and visibility for Oklahoma State University. Additional athletics facilities will enable us to expand current events and recruit more - and those visitor dollars - to our community. I'm voting "Yes!" for the Visitor Tax on February 8th."
Cary McBride, Tumbleweed Dancehall & Concert Arena
"We have worked closely with Visit Stillwater for years and have even won a Red Bud state-wide tourism award together. We are excited to see them be able to expand the sales and marketing side to encourage more unique events to host in Stillwater. The Tumbleweed supports a Yes! vote on February 8th.
Jill vanEgmond, Executive Director, Lake McMurtry
"Visit Stillwater is one of Lake McMurtry's biggest champions and supporters. They are instrumental in helping us attract visitors looking for recreation options in Stillwater. I encourage you to vote "Yes!" for the Visitor Tax on February 8th."
Amanda Edwards, Front Desk Supervisor, Holiday Inn Hotel & Suites Stillwater - University West
"We have loved working with the Visit Stillwater Team and support a YES! Vote on February 8th! Seeing new opportunities come to Stillwater with the potential of youth and or adult sports facilities has us excited!"
Willie Baker, Attorney
"I've served on the Visit Stillwater board of directors several times over the past thirty-six years. The organization does a great job attracting visitors and providing marketing services for local businesses and events. Please join me and vote "Yes!" for the Visitor Tax on February 8th."
Cory Williams, Look Properties / Attorney
"Your sports facilities truly are a catalyst for economic development—not only bringing in outside dollars to our community, but also allowing our own residents to stay in town and spend their money here supporting their friends and neighbors instead of other communities every weekend. Please vote "Yes!" for the Visitor Tax on February 8th."
Lora Graham, Sales Manager, Holiday Inn Express & Suites
"The Visit Stillwater staff has been responsible for many of the groups we've hosted at the Holiday Inn Express & Suites since we opened for business. We will vote "Yes!" on February 8th so they can continue to increase the number of visitors that come to Stillwater annually."
Jess Barnes, Owner, Shake, Rattle & Roll Events
"Working with the event planners Visit Stillwater brings to town has helped us grow our business! We are excited to see them be able to grow even more with a Yes! vote on Feb. 8th."
Joey Graham, Graham's Shooting Stars Academy, OSU Final Four Basketball Team (2003-05)
"I appreciate the positive attitude and do whatever it takes mindset of the Visit Stillwater staff. With more resources, they can do more to help sporting events planners like me - and others - to host events in Stillwater. Spending by the teams, family members, and fans will help our community grow. I'll be voting Yes! for the visitor tax on February 8th!
Brian Saliba, Freddie Paul's Steakhouse
"The Visit Stillwater team does an outstanding job helping us market and promote not only Freddie Paul’s but also showcasing Sky Golf to local and visitor groups! We will vote YES! on February 8th!"
Mark Gunkel, CPA
"As the long-time CPA for Visit Stillwater, I've observed their effectiveness publicly and behind the scenes. I'm voting "Yes!" for the Visitor Tax to ensure they can continue to increase the economic impact they make on our community."
Stephanie Dermer, The Original Hideaway Pizza
"One of our favorite things to do is partner with Visit Stillwater when travel writers are in town! They do a great job hosting the writers or bloggers in town to get them to as many local businesses and attractions as possible. We are excited to see the opportunities grow with a YES! Vote on February 8th."
Michael Davis, Stillwater Citizen
"The women of Visit Stillwater are determined to promote local businesses and events that contribute to our quality of life. Their track record of accomplishments speaks for itself. As a result, Stillwater is the hub of activity for our area; it’s now the place to be! Moreover, I know firsthand that Visit Stillwater will assist those whose efforts will benefit us all in the long run. Therefore, my friends and I urge you to vote YES! February 8, 2022."
Scott Leming, State Farm Insurance
"I've always said the work of Visit Stillwater is among the most effective for our community. Please join me in voting "Yes!" for the Visitor Tax on February 8th to continue their positive momentum and to finally get adult and youth athletics facilities built within Stillwater to enhance tourism year-round!"
Roger and Pat Mullins, Bliss Books & Bindery
"Bliss Books supports and encourages a Yes! Vote on February 8th! Visit Stillwater is a great partner to our business, especially since we don't have our own sales and marketing team. We will all greatly benefit from more visitors to our community."
Ival Gregory, Director Emeritus OSU Fraternity & Sorority Affairs
"I chaired the committee that passed the original Visitor Tax in 1985 and I currently serve as the secretary of Visit Stillwater. I'm thrilled to see the success of our visitor development efforts and will emphatically vote "Yes!" for the Visitor Tax to ensure we continue our positive momentum."
Susan Hartford, Owner, Sparrow Beginnings & Typo Market
"We formed a partnership with Visit Stillwater shortly after opening both of our very different types of businesses. The ladies have been great at helping us draw out-of-town business to our shop downtown, event venue, and cottages. Their marketing efforts have been beneficial to our businesses and we encourage a Yes! vote on February 8th to help them continue to attract more visitor dollars to Stillwater."
Lana Layton, General Manager, Microtel Inn & Suites
"We don't experience the type of personal relationships we have with Visit Stillwater in our other markets. We support a "Yes" vote on the Visitor Tax on February 8th to continue to grow to Visit Stillwater programming and visitor development type of amenities."
Shelly Weaver, President/Founder, EPOS Sports Experience
"I could host my week-long youth sports camp at several locations around the state. However, I clicked with the ladies at Visit Stillwater within a minute of meeting them and knew Stillwater and OSU would be the home for my dream to provide a sports experience to all kids, regardless of their financial means. I was excited to learn of the proposed increase to the visitor tax to enable them to provide even more marketing and services to event planners, as well as enhance the current athletics facilities. I encourage you to vote "Yes!" on February 8th!"
Carolyn Walstad, Executive Director, Stillwater Area Sports Association
"We are excited for the ability to enhance our current facilities and fields - and build new ones - to host tournaments in Stillwater. SASA events attract teams from across Oklahoma and surrounding states. Our partnership with Visit Stillwater has been beneficial to SASA and the community as a whole. I'm voting "Yes!" for the Visitor Tax to continue our positive momentum and create even more sales tax dollars for our community."
Drew Beverage, Provalue.net
"As a member of several different organizations and events in Stillwater, I see the benefits Visit Stillwater brings to them, whether they are community or visitor-related. I support a YES! Vote on February 8th!"
"Visit Stillwater has my support in their efforts to increase the visitor tax on February 8th. They do a great job marketing our community to visitors as well as communicating to Stillwater businesses and residents. An increase to the visitor tax will enable them to provide more services, marketing, and sales activities. I also like their plan to build sports facilities that will generate even more visitors in Stillwater. Only those staying in lodging properties pay the tax and we as residents will benefit."
Sean McCabe, Stilly Half - Half Marathon and 5K
“I’ve worked with the Visit Stillwater staff on many events from the OSU Cowboy Jamboree, Remember the Ten Run and the Stilly Half. When working with them they completely understand the needs of myself as a race director to create the most successful event possible for all our participants, right here in Stillwater. I’ll be voting “Yes!” on February 8th to ensure these events will continue to grow in our community, the facilities will be enhanced and Visit Stillwater will be able to continue the amazing work they do showcasing America’s Friendliest College Town!”
Roger & Brenda Stacy, Golden Eagle Enduro
"We have enjoyed working with Visit Stillwater and appreciate their annual support of the Golden Eagle Enduro that takes place at the Stillwater 500 annually. We are lucky to have a top-notch group at Visit Stillwater to help us, and other groups, host events in Stillwater. We will unequivocally vote "Yes!" on February 8th to enable Visit Stillwater to grow and enhance amenities that will attract visitors to our town."
Mohammed Mahmoud, Owner, Granny's Kitchen
"As a long-time downtown business owner, I have seen the positive impact Visit Stillwater efforts have on my restaurant and downtown Stillwater through their relationships, marketing, and sales efforts. I support a "Yes!" votes for the Visitor Tax on February 8th."
Michael Messuri, General Manager, Springhill Suites
"After attending the quarterly hotel luncheon and seeing first-hand the direction Visit Stillwater is going, we at the Springhill Suites are supporting a "Yes!" vote on February 8th.
Tiffani Pruitt, Oklahoma Cattlemen's Association
I’ve worked closely with the Visit Stillwater staff on many events from the Oklahoma Junior Cattlemen’s Summer Preview Show to the Oklahoma Club Calf Association’s Beef Expo in the spring. When working with them, they completely understand what it takes to put on a multiple-day livestock show and that Stillwater has what it takes to accommodate the guests it brings to town. I’ll be supporting a YES! vote on February 8 to ensure these events will continue to grow in the Stillwater community!
Kent Kinzie, Leonard Jewelry
"At Leonard Jewelry we appreciate all of the marketing and promotion assistance provided by the Visit Stillwater team. The more visitors that come to town the more our registers will ring. We'll be voting "Yes!" on the Visitor Tax on February 8th."
Deb Morrison, American Rabbit Breeders Association
"After working with the ladies at Visit Stillwater our group now hosts up to two Rabbit Shows in Stillwater a year! They make planning events from outside of Stillwater easy! If it hadn't been for Visit Stillwater, we would holding our shows in another city. Our exhibitors, some traveling from 5 other States, enjoy the central location, venues and accessibility. I greatly appreciate the Ladies at Visit Stillwater checking on us throughout the year and their willingness to accommodate any of our needs. We support a YES! Vote on February 8th!"
Jan Harriss, Retired, Stillwater Hotelier
"I spent most of my career in the hotel industry and depended upon the sales and services provided by Visit Stillwater. I encourage a "Yes!" vote for the Visitor Tax on February 8th to enable us to develop more visitor amenities and Visit Stillwater programming."
Jerod Millirons, Co-Owner, Iron Monk Brewing Company
"Iron Monk supports Visit Stillwater as well as a YES! Vote on February 8th! The revenue from this program will be used to increase visitors and enhance the quality of life for Stillwater residents, without putting extra financial burden on Stillwater taxpayers. We hope you'll consider supporting this win-win proposition for an even better Stillwater!"
Jeri Hughs, General Manager, Residence Inn by Marriott
"We appreciate our relationship with Visit Stillwater to work together to fill up the Residence Inn by Marriott with event attendees, athletics fans, leisure travelers, and our extended stay guests. We will vote YES!" on February 8th for the visitor tax to make sure we are staying in front of decision-makers to increase the number of visitors who come to Stillwater."
Lisa Mills, Owner, All Around Cowgirl Boutique
"First off I want to say hats off to the ladies at Visit Stillwater! They are Stillwater’s biggest advocates! I will be voting YES! on February 8th to increase the number of events and visitors to Stillwater."
Valerie Bloodgood, Modella Gallery, Downtown Stillwater
"The ladies at Visit Stillwater have done an outstanding job getting the word out about the Downtown Stillwater Cultural District. They printed promo cards for all of us, distribute them from their visitor center, and mention the District in their publications and marketing. At Modella Gallery we really appreciate the marketing they do for us on local TV, radio, and print publications. We look forward to their continued assistance and will vote Yes! on February 8th to enable them to expand the services they provide small businesses such as ours."
Representative Trish Ranson
"Visit Stillwater has done an amazing job recruiting and supporting many events in Stillwater. After all, we're a town folks want to come home to. Our economy will greatly benefit from these continued and enhanced efforts. Please join me in voting "Yes!" for the Visitor Tax on February 8th."
Lee Roy Smith, Executive Director, National Wrestling Hall of Fame
"The Visit Stillwater team has been a great resource and partner to us over the years. They have assisted us with all kinds of things, such as signage, marketing, and have brought numerous travel writers through the museum generating national publicity for us. We look forward to a Yes! vote to enable them to expand their services and to create additional visitor development tools for our community. "
Drew and Constance Williamson, Owners, Zannotti's Wine Bar & Meditations Events Venue
"Both Meditations and Zannotti’s have benefited from Visit Stillwater marketing and sales efforts. Their staff goes above and beyond to help us book business from local and out-of-town event coordinators. And, we would personally love to attend more of our children's sporting events here in Stillwater and spend money locally! We support a YES! vote on February 8th!"
Jim Beckstrom, Block 34 Trust Authority & Stillwater Community Center Friends
"We depend upon our partnership with Visit Stillwater to market and promote events that occur at the Stillwater Community Center and on Block 34. I'm voting YES! on February 8th to enable Visit Stillwater to enhance its efforts which will contribute further to the success of downtown hosted events throughout the year. We look forward to all of the positive momentum, including the new and innovative attractions located downtown, for residents and to attract visitors to our community."
Kevin Fowler, Market President, Simmons Bank & President, Stillwater Area Sports Association
"The Stillwater Area Sports Association (SASA) is a non-profit organization devoted to providing league sports to the youth and adults of Stillwater and surrounding areas. Visit Stillwater has been a valuable partner that assists us with marketing, lodging options, information to provide visitors, and annual scheduling. We look forward to our enhanced partnership and the opportunities that will be available to us with a Yes! vote on February 8th. Enhanced facilities, grant assistance, and more local tournaments will provide a substantial economic boost for our community."
Stephen Gose, President, Gose and Associates
"A 'yes' vote on the Visitor Tax will not only provide additional resources for our community advocates at Visit Stillwater but will also help move projects forward in Stillwater that attract more visitors and provide additional opportunities for our fellow community members. The recreation facilities that could be expanded and created to attract tournaments will be a major driver for our continued growth as a community. Please join me in voting yes on February 8th."
Wes and Lou Watkins
“Without question, a big reason we love Stillwater is because of its small-town values with big-town activities! We like the idea of letting our visitors share the cost of providing those activities. Over 36 years ago, a small (4%) lodging tax was levied to help that happen. Now it is proposed that levy be raised by 3%. That increase seems fair to us, and matches or is less than the “visitor’s tax” in virtually every town of any size around us. Part of the earnings will go to improve the facilities we have and to create new ones – and, to help pay for marketing an exciting new convention center which really will create vibrancy for our community. We see this vote as one more way to ensure a wonderful future for Stillwater. Voters will approve or disapprove of this proposed increase on Feb 8. Join us in voting FOR the proposed increase in the Visitor’s Tax.”
Roger Gose, Founder, Gose and Associates
"I've had the opportunity to work with the Visit Stillwater staff in various capacities over the years. Most recently, they have provided detailed industry data to assist us with a convention center development. An increase in the Stillwater visitor tax will enable them to continue to market and sell Stillwater as an event site location that will translate into numerous visitors coming to Stillwater each year and increased sales tax expenditures for our local economy. I'm voting 'Yes' to expand Visit Stillwater services to benefit our local businesses and to make some projects we've talked about for decades a reality."