Festival financials rebound

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Carolyn Roy | News Editor
After the havoc caused by COVID-19 in 2020, the Christmas Festival revenue rebounded last year according to the Historic District Business Association’s (HDBA) income statement.
“The Christmas Festival Committee was optimistic about how the 2021 season would turn out. It quickly became evident that people were eager to travel and return to a sense of normalcy. With the help of community partners, locals and visitors, we were passionate to do our part to help boost our local economy and keep Natchitoches thriving,” said HDBA Director of Promotions and Events Jill Leo.
The 2021 statements show the income amounted to $943,042 with expenses at $893,042, leaving a cash reserve of $225,000.
That balance compares to the beginning budget of 2021 of only $172,748.
In 2021, the largest sources of income were armbands, $370,122; festival tickets , $450,541; and merchandise, $31,851.
Vendor income was $15,665; grants and sponsorships $28,500; and corporate sponsors, $29,249. Other revenue was from port-a-pottie reimbursement, $5,000; Cookies with Santa, $5,000; advertising split money, $3,592; bus and RV rental, $2,055; miscellaneous $867; and interest income $600.
The largest expenses were fireworks for all weekends, $117,000; festival ticket redemptions, $372,531; advertising, $22,279; Cooperative Endeavor Agreement with the City, $50,000; festival administration, $50,000; improvements, $34,979; restoring 2020 losses, $27,251; and increasing cash reserves, $25,000.