As I mentioned a couple of weeks ago, the Sounds of Lewisville Concert Series is on ice for this summer due to budget shortfalls in the City of Lewisville's Hotel-Motel Occupancy Tax fund.
The series can be saved though, if we can find creative ways to pull it off without cost to the City. Several ideas are on the table:
- Have bands with their own sound equipment play at the Vista Ridge Amphitheatre and allow them to charge a cover charge and keep the revenue.
- Have an acoustic series, and hold it for a smaller crowd in Wayne Ferguson Plaza in Old Town.
- Have a "road show" series in a Battle of the Bands format. Raise private funds to pay for lights and sound. If extra money can be raised to rent a stage, it can be held in Old Town, otherwise it would be at Vista Ridge Amphitheare. This latter option is what the City Council has tentatively approved.
We think that a "Battle of the Bands" format would be ideal because it preserves some of the main features that residents are accustomed to for the concerts:
- Free admission
- Can accomodate a large crowd, in terms of sound level and seating area.
- Full season schedule
- Variety of music styles
So here's the deal: Council has approved the idea. They're good with the concept, and we all think we could pull it off with help from city staff. BUT, there's a cost, and we would need to raise some money to pay that cost.
If we have the concerts at the Vista Ridge Amphitheatre, which the city owns, then there is no facility rental or stage rental fees. The venue has electricity and restrooms, so we don't have to pay for a generator or porta-potties. The bands would be unpaid contestants. What we would have to pay is:
- $700 - $800 for rental of sound and lighting equipment
Revenue we could make:
- 4 * $35 entry fee per band = $140 per night
- 2 * $50 concession fee for food / drink vendors. = $100 per night.
This means that each event would cost between $460 and $560.
Now, if you want to do the event in Old Town at the Wayne Ferguson Plaza, then add in $1800 for stage and generator rental.
So, both the number of bands / performance nights, and the location mix (Old Town, vs. Amphitheater) are dependent on how much money we could raise.
Here's Where You Come In
We are looking for Lewisville businesses who would be willing to sponsor the series, or contribute in any way. In exchange, we would likely print your business logo on the promotional materials, have the host mention your business name to the crowds, and your banners would be visible to the audience throughout the event, with about a zillion replays on the city's LVTV cable channel. Blogs like this will give you props here too. If might be interested in helping us out, email Mike Roberts: firstname.lastname@example.org, and provide your phone number so he can call you.
If we are to pull this off, we would need to have people willing to help out as stage hands and we could use help in locating sponsors, and publicizing the event to bands. We would also need bands willing to compete. If you think you can help, email Mike Roberts: email@example.com.
Don't send any money yet. This is not a done deal. The first thing we have to do is see what kind of support we can get. This is still in the planning and exploration phase. We think it's worth it to save a 20 year old event that Lewisville Citizens love. While the economic situation is bad right now, and citizens are hurting, music is a sort of universal escape. We hope that we'll find some loyal Lewisville backers who can step up and save the day.