Vernon Rib Fest canceled due to financial burden of increased costs – Vernon News

Written by Javed Iqbal

Vernon Rib Fest has been officially canceled.

The event, first held in Vernon in 2019, was put on the sidelines of COVID concerns over the past two years. And now attempts to revive the 8.-10. July 2022 encountered insurmountable economic challenges.

Elaine Gallacher, with the Vernon Rib Fest Society, says costs have risen exponentially, putting the event out of reach.

“There were a number of different factors,” Gallacher said Tuesday, adding that members of the Rib Fest committee met on Monday “and reviewed all aspects of it,” but it was just not possible to continue.

Earlier this month, Gallacher said the community had to cover a $ 30,000 deficit. Vernon Tourism pledged $ 3,000 to the event, and the city of Vernon reduced its fee to rent the curling rink by $ 5,000.

An anonymous donor also offered help, but it was still not enough.

Gallacher says society expected increased costs compared to previous events and budgeted with them, but the increases were larger than expected.

“The cost increased so much that it was out of our reach,” she said. “For example, the security for events of the same size as a minimum was doubled. The security in 2019 was around $ 11,000.”

Gallacher said a small expansion would have pushed security costs to more than $ 30,000.

Subsidies from the city and the regional district did not materialize either.

“Almost all costs had risen much higher than we had expected,” she said. “It was more than we could handle. It was a really difficult decision and no one wanted to make it.

“We just hate what this has done, not only for the bars, but also for our local economy and for the vendors and the musicians and the entertainers and everyone who committed to supporting the event.”

So is this the end of Rib Fest in Vernon, or will an effort be made to bring the event back?

“We have not had that conversation,” Gallacher Castanet said.

In an attempt to save at least part of the event, Gallacher said the ribs were given contact information to the organizers of the Sun Valley Cruise In, which takes place the same weekend.

Between salaries, groceries and hotel rentals, the ribs have invested more than $ 100,000 in the event.

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Javed Iqbal

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