ROYAL OAK (WWJ) – Organizers of this summer’s Ford Arts, Beats & Eats announced that the festival raised $263,185. More than 60 charitable and cultural organizations benefited and shared in the total amount raised from this year’s festival.

This year, 335,000 people visited the festival. Of those, 115,000 were paid admissions and the remainder consisted of festival patrons who donated non-perishable goods to the Citizen Bank Hunger Initiatives, those who took advantage of early admission on the opening day of the event, and complimentary admissions to sponsors and stakeholders.

Event promoter Jon Witz called the festival “an incredible success,” adding that the hot weather contributed to smaller attendance numbers compared to last year’s turnout.

The preliminary figures on the economic impact of the festival indicate it brought in approximately $29.3 million. The total bar, restaurant and retail revenues were estimated at $11.5 million. These figures are based on the Michigan tourism spending and economic impact model developed for Travel Michigan and the Michigan tourism industry to help estimate the economic impacts of tourism-related projects.

The festival generated $88,914 in gate proceeds, which was distributed to 13 participating organizations. Proceeds from beverage sales of $57,250 went to 29 participating charitable and cultural groups, while 10 charitable groups will receive a share of $39,882 generated from Arts Du Jour. Six groups will share $46,082 from the parking program, while area cultural groups shared $15,570 in donations.

The Priority Health Arts in Motion 5K presented by Detroit Medical Center Sports Medicine received $6,207. City Connect Detroit, Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak Association of Retailers and Adopt A Watt also shared $7,600.

Presenting sponsor Citizens Bank returned for its second consecutive year and, once again, hosted the Citizens Bank Food Drive to collect donations of food to benefit Gleaners Community Food Bank of Southeastern Michigan in an effort to raise awareness of the hunger relief initiative.

Local nonprofits and community organizations in Royal Oak also were big winners in this year’s festivals. Of all the donations, more than $98,000 was shared between community organizations and nonprofits that call Royal Oak home.


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