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Financial Challenges Cancel Future Cityfolk Festivals
DAYTON -- Dwindling attendance and financial challenges have led to the demise of the Cityfolk Festival, organizers say.
The festival was rained out in 2012 and attendance fell short of goals for 2013, which has also prompted the discontinuation of the group's residency program and Culture Builds Community. The group has also withdrawn its anticipated partnership with the Dayton Art Institute.
Organizers say they will now focus on jazz.
According to Matt Dunn, Cityfolk Board President, Cityfolk knew it had to change its business model.
"Even prior to last year's festival, we were realizing declining ticket sales, sponsorships, and government support," said Dunn. "The rain that devastated last year's festival put us in a deeper hole and sped up our process for making changes, including having a fundraising campaign, while also letting go of some staff."
Dayton Art Institute Executive Director Michael Roediger said the news is disappointing.
"We were looking forward to a relationship that would have been beneficial to both organizations," Roediger said.
While the 2013-14 concert season was announced at the 2013 Festival, no tickets have been sold, according to Dunn. Shows, in partnership with the University of Dayton's Arts Series, will continue. The other shows will be canceled.
Dunn said he hopes Cityfolk will not go away completely. An all-volunteer-led Cityfolk will use the coming weeks to assess its options to continue presenting jazz, for which it has an endowment to help cover the costs. The endowment, specifically for presenting and preserving jazz, was raised locally and matched by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation.
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