EUGENE, Ore. — Just when Festival of Eugene organizers thought the event was a go, they say a $10,000 donation was taken away.
Now the group is scrambling to make up the money by their deadline, which is in three days.
“It was incredibly disappointing,” said Krysta Albert, Festival of Eugene producer.
They want to lure in the crowds, showcase the shops, and promote art.
“If we could get everyone in Eugene to donate a dollar, we’d be funded,” Albert said.
But bringing the Festival of Eugene to fruition is proving to be a challenge. Organizers said a group pledged a $10,000 donation just what they needed to make it happen. Then shortly after the donors changed their minds.
“I really don’t know why other than it was too short notice to be able to do that,” Albert said.
And time is ticking. Organizers have until Monday to fundraise in order to solidify a police presence at the event. With big sponsors so far like Ninkasi, Eugene Airport and Frontier Airlines, they are hopeful other businesses will pull through.
The Tap and Growler made its contribution, and like other storefronts in the Fifth Street Public Market area, and along the festival’s footprint, they’d love to see the celebration take off.
“We think this is a great opportunity for Eugene and surrounding area for people to come down and see what’s going on around here,” said Colby Phillips, Tap and Growler owner.
It’s a high hope in need of a generous gift.
“To have this one person come forward and say, ‘Hey, I’m going to save the day.’ It was a huge sigh of relief for so many people who have put so much time and so much effort putting this together,” Albert said.
Albert didn’t want to release the identity of the group who retracted their donation, since they originally wanted to be anonymous.
The festival would be a free, nonprofit event staffed by volunteers. It’s scheduled for Aug 22-23 in downtown Eugene. Click here for the group’s Go Fund Me account if you’d like to donate.