The 2020 Smoky Hill River Festival appears to be on life support after Salina Arts & Humanities Executive Director Brad Anderson said that he will advise the Salina City Commission to cancel this year’s festival.
Appearing on Newsradio 1150 KSAL’s “Clarke Sanders Show” on Tuesday afternoon, Anderson said while he is disappointed to reach the conclusion, canceling the 2020 Smoky Hill River Festival makes the most sense financially for all parties involved.
The decision on the status of the festival was supposed to be made on Monday at the Salina City Commission meeting. However, due to technical issues, the meeting was adjourned and moved to Wednesday, March 25.
It is at this meeting that Anderson will advise the commission to cancel the 2020 Smoky Hill River Festival.
However, Anderson said that Arts & Humanities will follow the recommendation of the City Commission. If the commission says that the show must go on, Anderson and staff will continue with everything as planned for June 11, 12, 13 and 14.
While postponement of the show was considered, Anderson said that there are too many moving parts and doing so would likely be too costly. Anderson says that the goal of each year’s festival is to at least break-even or very rarely, turn a small surplus. A postponement would likely mean that several vendors or performers would already be booked at other ventures meaning that re-cooperating the lost money would be too difficult.
The upcoming Salina City Commission meeting is planned for Wednesday at 4 p.m.