UPDATE: City of Sioux Falls spends over $200K of your taxdollars to promote covid tourism and super spreader events

After watching this press conference, I just shook my head, just like I do every time I see the POTUS at a press conference.

UPDATE: You will notice in the video, Teri Schmidt, who runs the CVB mentions that ClickRain is the company who has the contract with the CVB. This of course is Mayor TenHaken’s former company. The city council just approved over $200K to go towards this promotion, which will essentially be handed over to ClickRain. Can anyone say ‘conflict of interest’?

It was also pointed out to me after the meeting, that Paul stated to someone he is very nervous about how this is all going to work with our recent spike. As it has been said, Paul, now is the time to lead.

Why on earth would we be promoting tourism in the middle of a pandemic (and soon influenza season) while our numbers are spiking out of control?

A new program championed by the city of Sioux Falls called Sioux Falls Alive aims to give people safe programs and events during the fall and winter months.

“We have to figure out how we co-exist with COVID-19 over the winter,” Mayor Paul TenHaken said.

“We have to continue to look at ways to give our community, give our families, give people in Sioux Falls ways to stay engaged in the community, ways to stay involved in activities to do but doing so in a very safe and socially distant fashion … believe it or not those things can co-exist.”

Sioux Falls is “going to demonstrate how that can be done,” he added.

We have hardly figured out how to keep our workplaces and nursing homes safe, how on earth can you have beer gardens and masquerade parties? At least people will be wearing masks at one of the events.

While I often have said Mayor Stoneless really does have stones (mostly between his ears) I wonder who is really pushing this hair brain idea of ignoring the covid, let’s party?!

He is right about one thing, the hospitality industry will be devastated over the winter in Sioux Falls. With our numbers spiking, especially in Minnehaha and Lincoln county, our bars and restaurants this winter will be practically empty. They struggle anyway when it gets cold out, put Covid on top of that, not a good situation.

While I commend our city leaders for trying to keep the hospitality industry going in SF during a pandemic, this is a poor plan.

There should be more exploration of how to make takeout and food delivery more convenient and affordable AND profitable for these businesses instead of worrying about our public entertainment facilities (the Romans called it Bread and Circus for a reason). One of my friends suggested easing the laws so bars/restaurants can deliver pre-made cocktails to your home with food, or to avoid the alcohol laws, deliver setups with recipe instructions on what alcohol to add.

There are many great ideas out there to keep businesses open, but promoting a Covid holiday and super spreader events in our city, while using my tax money, is about as Covid stupid as I have seen.


#1 "Very Stable Genius" on 09.24.20 at 10:23 pm

Our approach to COVID has acquired a cap and trade mentality. No wonder hospitalizations are used and not cases.

Oh, and why do I need to wear a mask to my clinic, but not, in order, to go to the corresponding wellness center of my clinic?

I guess marketing has become the true virus of our time and it could kill you, while making others look good.

#2 D@ily Spin on 09.25.20 at 7:57 am

When I pass hotels, the lot is full suggesting they’re booked. It’s not tourists, it’s contractors and construction workers. Why advertise for tourists when these people spend more and stay longer? The city is growing. Don’t bring in more Covid. You’ll kill valuable people willing to work for corrupt developers who do things for twice the price because they paid of city officials.

#3 Flattenthecurve on 09.25.20 at 3:00 pm

VSG, back when this all started…we were told to hide for 14 days to help flatten the curve. Our hospitals were going to be overrun. You do remember that, comrade? Therefore, why wouldn’t we use hospitalizations and not cases…we are just trying to slow the spread to allow the hospitals to function properly. Of course 1 death is too many, but, at that time, they were predicting millions of deaths in the US. You can call the Governor and Mayor all the names you guys want, but the fact remains, they have a city/state to run. Part of that is having enough tax revenue. I don’t see what is wrong with trying to entice entities to come to our great city and spend their hard earned $$$. Ya never know, maybe we can save important stuff like the Band, or a Pavillion that is losing money. Heck, maybe we could put more statues in our city, you guys seem to really like statues.

#4 anonymous on 09.26.20 at 10:52 am

Tell me again, Flattenthecurve, how much does the State of South Dakota and the City of Sioux Falls have in their reserves?

Us foolish taxpayers have always been told this is for emergencies! I guess the greatest healthcare crisis since 1918 doesn’t qualify as an emergency…

And, BTW, those PBR cowboys must love us….we’re one of the very few places in the U.S. willing to allow them to use our taxpayer-owned facility!!

#5 Flattenthecurve on 09.26.20 at 5:50 pm

Golly gee, I guess we should just all hide in our basements like Biden! Rona ain’t going away any time soon, we can’t stop a virus, I guess you are all for businesses closing, people losing jobs, homes, etc? We should have never locked down in the first place. If you are unhealthy or over 70, might want to social distance, wash your hands, wear a mask, etc. I’m cleaning geese, then plan to go ride my motorcycle to a nice local bar.

#6 scott on 09.27.20 at 3:56 pm

just wondering if pth “sold” click rain, or is still really owns it.

#7 l3wis on 09.27.20 at 4:21 pm

So you bring up an interesting question I cannot answer, but I will say this;

• Publicly TenHaken has said he has sold the company and no longer ‘owns’ it.

• But he could have stock in it as a non-controlling partner. Not sure if he does.

• He could have this stock thru his wife (Huether pulled this with his wife).

• He clearly owns the building ClickRain is in, and they are a tenant that could be paying him rent.

I think you would have to see, most likely, private docs that show the ownership of the company.

He made millions while running the company, so I find it hard to believe that the person who runs it now just wrote a check to him and bought it flat out. While I think it is possible she could have gotten a loan and had investors, I think the likely scenario, and I am just speculating, he gave her a friendly loan to buy it from him. So, kind of like being on a payment program. Which in turn would still make him an owner.

I would love if we had media in this town with stones who would just ask if he still has some kind of ownership in the company, because if he does, this $200K + contract with the CVB and ultimately with the taxpayers of SF is an enormous conflict of interest and way more unethical than Greg’s right wing free trip to Texas.