CORVALLIS, Ore. – Da Vinci Days celebrated its 25th anniversary this summer, but festival organizers say the declining revenue is forcing them to cancel the 2014 event.
The Da Vinci Days Board of Directors broke the news to the Corvallis City Council Monday evening. Steve Clark, the Vice President for OSU Relations and Marketing is also on the Board of Directors for the festival. He says the revenue for Da Vinci Days comes from admission fees, sponsorships, and concessions.
“Over the years, those contributions from major stakeholders, the local government, and local businesses have substantially declined,” Clark said.
So instead of calling it quits, board members asked themselves one question: What would Leonardo da Vinci do?
“He would say reinvent,” Clark said. “Discover what’s new for the future.”
The board will name an assessment committee to host forums over the next four to six months, which will ask community members what they want to see in the festival.
“We want the community to say: ‘This is what I value; this is what I support,’” Clark said.
Festival goers say they hope the year off will help spark a positive change for the event.
“It’s a nice flavor of what’s going on in Corvallis,” said Eugene resident Keith McConnell. “And I do hope it comes back.”
Board members say they are also hopeful Da Vinci Days will be back in 2015.
“We think Corvallis and Oregon State together are one of the most – if not the most – innovative community in the nation,” Clark said. “We think Da Vinci Days can showcase that.”
Clark says the festival is run by volunteers, and it would not be possible to run an assessment and still have time to plan a 2014 festival at the same time.
If anyone wants to be part of the assessment committee, Clark says to contact the board through e-mail at: firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at: (541) 757-6363.