Call for Artists, Making Money at Juried Art Fairs, Craft Shows and Festivals
Once upon a time security at art festivals might consist of Boy Scouts patrolling the streets of Ann Arbor at night; Boy Scouts camping in the park at Winter Park or the University of Miami football team being "security" at the Coconut Grove Arts Festival. True story ...
Then came 9/11. Everything changed and continues to be more challenging. I was staff on the Super Bowl committee in Detroit a few years ago. We had security briefings that included local police, sheriffs, FBI and the border patrol. That was an event with a huge budget.
What has happened at the art fairs as we try to control these hugely popular, sprawling, well-attended events? Who'd attack an art fair? Who knows? Insurance companies and municipalities are requiring the shows to add 24 hour security, barricades, security cameras, train staffs for disasters. I'm sure I'm missing something here.
At the recent Arts Festival Conference sponsored by Zapp in Florida one of the topics was how to prepare an event for emergency situation. The truth: it is very costly. And VERY frightening. I learned:
Shows are looking for grants, partnerships with sponsors, partnering with their cities to find the funds so they don't get passed on to you.
It used to be that the only disaster we had to prepare for was seriously bad weather.
As I sat there listening I was pretty horrified that it has come to this. Why is life so complicated? (rhetorical)