Especially one thats brand spankin new!
Ok, so Every year we have a great big festival that's held downtown on the river. Aptly named RiverFest it draws a good number of people and for a time showcased local talent. Now as most of these things go corp buys in as vendor spots are open to interpretation and the festival needs the money. Understood. Np. (I'd love for it not to happen but ya know)
Now, there have always been spots open for artists specifically to purchase to show their wares and sell them. Great. Fantastic. A venue where people are spending festival paper money and still have cash burning a hole in their pockets. Hey! Its RiverFest! I can't tell you for sure what the fees for spots were in the past, but I can tell you they are a bit pricey now. Not to mention you have to have insurace for the thing too. Yeahhhhhh, I'm so explaining that over the phone to my rep who's going to see dollar signs. Kaaaching$-$.
Now were I able to plop down said cash for a spot, and I knew I could buffer a very decent ammount of product for said show....I might just do it. I am talking state fair size people count here folks and more as this isn't a cattle showing, bull riding, stuff your face and ride rides kind of thing. It's a walk around and enjoy the fun thing. (Not that I don't LOVE the fair, don't get me wrong, it's just a different kind of event. Sort of. There are still the crazies that come out at night and half naked people. )
But I digress.
The main issue I have this week kids is that said festival has decided to start a juried art show. Asuming that they are trying to bring the art back into the festival as they have run many an artist off with their tactics for business.
Whoot, great. all that.
Ok, the logo useage is close, the show is advertised on the festivals website, the application fee is normal. Looks like a great new portion of RiverFest. Theeeen theres the date.
One week before the main festival. WAaaaaait a minute? Whaaaa? say that again? One Week Before the Festival. You know the same weekend as that other festival that draws a good crowd on the OTHER side of town. The one that has hummus and gyros and makes people want to go.
(Do belive me I've seen this happen before. Another art show I found out about it's very first year and every year since has done it.....)
Oh yeah, and by the way, booth fee. Thats going to be $500. Oh you have a friend who's an artist interested in the show as well? Oh well you can share a spot, np! For $600. And if she/he flakes on your or happens to not get selected to be in the show, You can cover that right? Sure you can.
Folks, this is will be the first year for this show. (next year, they are starting apps now)
Now heres where I can see their side. (*sigh* yes I said I could see their side of it)
A. The show doesn't need to be run over by people selling mass produced or cheaply made things so let's charge a large ammount for the booths! (Ummm...isn't that kind of why you have a juried show?...selected individuals only.)
B. Well it's part of RiverFest and so since were charging other artists that fee to set up a square.. we'll make it the same for this show. (WAAAAAAit......it's not really part of the festival, it's a whole diferent type of fish and it's so not at the same time.)
So yeah, while I see their way of "thinking" I don't appreciate it.
The other show I've seen do this has done some things differently and didn't charge a large ammount for their first show. And you know what? There weren't any mass produced booths. There were a bunch of local artists and a few from out of state who were very kind. The show was unfortunatly timed wrong and is every year. There is usually at least one other big thing going on in town if not three. I had been an artist at that show from the first year until two years ago when they went another wrong route and hired a musician. It killed the atmosphere of the show and drove one of the few other long time artists at the show out.
Oh and while they raise their booth fee every year....they get more and more mass produced and businesses. Too soon they will be realizing that they are A. running themselves into the ground as an art show and B. running out of room at their location.
So theres my rant. There are several other things that the second show I mentioned has done wrong, but we'll leave promotions, advertising, and deciding what exactly your show/fair/festival is for a later date.
One where I don't have a kid falling asleep on my arm.