Here is a follow-up from last week’s reprint of a 1988 Massac Memo concerning an attempt to induce people from central and northern Illinois to retire to Metropolis.
We may not get them to move here, but we sure tweaked an interest in Metropolis as a place for retirement.
“We” is the Massac County Chamber of Commerce.
“They” are people living in central and northern Illinois.
As you may have read in the Feb. 10 issue of The Planet, the Chamber spent approximately $260 advertising in newspapers in upstate Illinois to lure retirees to the Illinois Sunbelt.
Here is what the classified ads said:
Why spend another winter freezing? Retire to Metropolis, the “Capital of the Illinois Sunbelt.” Write Chamber, Metropolis, IL 62960. 618-524-2714.
The plan worked.
Approximately 40 letters and phone calls came in requesting information about what Metropolis has to offer.
The Chamber responded by sending brochures and information to the people in hopes they will visit the area. If just one or two of them move to this area, it will be well worth the investment in advertising.
Since the column was published, several retirees here, some of which moved down from northern Illinois, contacted me and volunteered to serve as hosts, or answer any questions prospective residents may have.
To show how our climate is much more like a southern state than northern Illinois, Maurice Clark brought me a nursery stock map out of the Burpee’s Catalog.
It shows us in the same hardiness zone as central Arkansas, southern Oklahoma, central Texas and southern New Mexico … not bad company.
Others from around town have told me about being asked by northern friends about our retirement project.
Massac County Housing Authority Director Bill Krumrey was preparing to open a meeting upstate when one of the other housing officials said. “Mr. Chairman, before we discuss housing authority business, we want to talk about the possibility of retiring to Metropolis.”
Howard Trampe said a friend of his who spends winters in Arizona asked about Metropolis after seeing the ad in his hometown paper.
A woman from the Bourbonnais Herald sent a note requesting information and said she wants to write a news story about the project.
The business editor of the Southern Illinoisan included the project in his business column last Sunday.
Now if we can just get things cleaned up a bit so the town will look nice for visitors......
March 9, 1988.