THE Winnipeg Folk Festival organization finished in the black last fiscal year, posting a $38,384 surplus for the 12-month period ending in January 2012.

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THE Winnipeg Folk Festival organization finished in the black last fiscal year, posting a $38,384 surplus for the 12-month period ending in January 2012.

The organization brought in $4.519 million in revenues during its fiscal year, which includes government grants and money made from the festival, music store, concert series and resource development. Its expenses, which include everything from its education and outreach programs to the Folk Exchange, and cost of sales totalled $4.481 million for a surplus of $38,384, according to the Winnipeg Folk Festival 2011-12 annual report, which notes the non-profit organization's financial position as of Jan. 31, 2012.

 Tegan and Sara were among the top performers at Folk Fest last year.

JOHN WOODS / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

Tegan and Sara were among the top performers at Folk Fest last year.

The annual five-day festival itself netted a profit of $645,000 last year with a record paid attendance of 59,324. That figure includes five-day pass-holders counted five times each. Folk Fest cost $2.3 million to put on and brought in $3 million worth of revenue.

The profit is reinvested into the organization for everything from community initiatives to site improvements.

Ticket sales from the festival account for 52 per cent of the organization's revenue while festival production at 36 per cent and administration at 29 per cent are its largest expenses.

The organization raised festival ticket prices and camping passes this year because it couldn't count on last year's record attendance numbers, said Buffie Babb, manager of finance and administration.

Beer and wine cost more at the festival this year, even though alcohol sales made the festival money last year. In 2011, the site's three beer tents brought in $253,000 in sales while expenses totalled $114,000, earning the festival a $139,000 profit. This year, beer went up from $5 to $6 a cup while wine is now $7 a glass.

Some other interesting items in the report include the purchase of the festival's office space and the Winnipeg Folk Festival Music Store at 211 Bannatyne Ave., for $484,000, which will save it nearly $80,000 annually in rent.

The organization has an agreement with the province to accrue 40 per cent of all camping revenues as a contribution toward capital improvements in the park. Last year the festival expensed $81,000 to the park.

Overall the organization has $2.1 million in net assets, according to the financial statement.

 

rob.williams@freepress.mb.ca