Cornwall ON – It’s been a bad year for festivals in the area. The Ottawa Ex didn’t happen this summer in our Nation’s capital, and now there are rumblings that Cornwall Kinsmen Lift Off could be in jeopardy for 2012. The festival underwent some dramatic changes this year losing two presidents in one season, and having to borrow $30,000 from the city of Cornwall Ontario in an emergency call to council.
Those monies were replaced, but there’s doubt as to what’s left in the bank to fund 2012 as the attendance this year was just over half of the groups target in spite of perfect conditions weather wise.
I contacted Michael Galvin, President of the Kinsmen who confirmed that the group will have to decide at their meeting at the end of this month whether to renew their support for another multi-year contract.
Judi Auger, still president currently of the Lift Off team, was surprised by the query stating that she won’t know anything until the Kinsmen meeting, and they always are on the look out for sponsorship for the event.
Lift Off has been a balloon fest held each summer in Cornwall Ontario. This year over 30,000 people visited the event which featured such musical performances as Kim Mitchell, April Wine, and Platinum Blonde. Hundreds of volunteers help make the festival one of the smoothest running events in the area.
The festival came under fire this year for its relationship with the local Corus radio outlet, and a lack of support for local musical talent as we covered in this earlier story. LINK There were also issues as the Cornwall Downtown Business Improvement Association pulled its financial support after issues with finding ways to improve traffic and benefits to the downtown core of businesses.
What do you think Cornwall? Can Lift Off be saved? Is there another potential sponsor if the Kinsmen do not continue their support? What do you think could be done to improve the festival? And should the festival receive public tax dollars in its current form with its current team?
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