How do events take off?
A summit is scheduled for July 26 to discuss planning for the fourth Genoa Cowboy Poetry & Music Festival.
Genoans established the event in 2010 after Candy Dance revenues started to decline. The hope was that it would begin to provide substantial revenues to the town’s coffers.
The real question is what conditions are required to establish a new event.
We look at the Valley’s most successful events, which include Candy Dance, and we know that patience is an important factor.
For the first two-thirds of its existence, Candy Dance literally consisted of a dance where people were able to make enough money selling candy to pay for Genoa’s light bill.
It wasn’t until the mid-1970s that a craft fair to help pay for children’s recreation programs was conceived. That craft fair turned out to be the big bonanza for the town, still providing the most of the money for its operation.
Even after a few years of decline, Candy Dance brings in $2 for every $1 spent. That’s an impressive return for any enterprise.
Looking to recent events, only Eagles & Agriculture has developed the wings needed to go the distance. But there we hit a rub. Eagles & Agriculture is not a huge money maker. It’s real purpose is educational, not financial.
If Cowboy Poetry’s purpose is to bring people to the Valley and teach them about our culture, then it’s already a success. If its purpose is to raise money for the town of Genoa, that may be another story.