Out in Des Moines (home to one of the nation's top art fairs) an experiment will be taking place on November 7 and 8 at the Metro Arts Expo in the downtown convention center. The organizers, the Metro Arts Alliance, have been awarded a $25,000 grant from Iowa Arts Council, so they are opening the doors free of charge!
In past years the admission was from $5 to $7 and the arts alliance is hoping that a free admission will double the number of attendees. This is a very nice event (a fair number of years ago we participated in it), in an attractive building and there is good community support, usually around 5000 people attend.
"This is a really great event, and the most important thing for us is to be able to offer it free to the public," said Kim Poam Logan, executive director of the Metro Arts Alliance. "We've always wanted to arrive at this point."
Read the article at the Des Moines Register
What do you think? Do you think that an admission fee (that is less than the price of a movie ticket) affects attendance? Are you affiliated with an art fair that could maybe squeeze some money out of a sponsor to make the admission free?
Are any of you taking part in the Metro Arts Expo? Please report back to me! I am very interested in seeing how this turns out.