That obscurity may be changing, however. City officials plan to spend $15,000 of city grant money in the next year on promotion and marketing of this town adjacent to the higher-profile burgs of Brentwood and Antioch in the hope of attracting new businesses and tourists.
"We want to present our city as a place where they would want to do business and come to," said City Councilwoman Carol Rios.
The funds will be used for events, programs and projects that promote the attraction of new businesses, the expansion and retention of existing businesses, the expansion of tourism and marketing the city outside the region, according to the grant guidelines.
The first to benefit from the fund is Gene Buchholz, owner of Hook, Line and Sinker, who is receiving $2,000 to help with the sponsorship and advertising for this weekend's annual 100% BASS Team Championship at Russo's Marina on Bethel Island.
Buchholz estimates that approximately 350 anglers will participate, with another 300 to 500 spectators coming to town for the event. In May, the city provided $3,000 for the FLW Everstart Tournament.
Buchholz said that the fishing tournaments bring national attention to the area, and that anglers and spectators spend money at hotels and restaurants. Comfort Suites in Oakley has been designated as host hotel for the tournament. Buchholz added that many of the contestants arrive early to practice.
The city promotional funds will be allocated two times a year. The first application deadline is Nov. 27, and the next will be April 9, 2007. Applications may be submitted by both for-profit and nonprofit organizations.
Councilwoman Pat Anderson said it would be a good idea to ask recipients of grant funds to report back on the outcome of their event or program and how it benefited from the financial assistance.