WOODMERE — Mayor Ben Holbert announced that the village is working quickly to plan the second annual music festival slated for this summer after council delayed approving the necessary funding.

The festival, originally planned for July 28, was moved back to Aug. 25 to allow event planner Vicki Dansby enough time to secure performers and vendors. At the March council meeting, council members deliberated whether $20,000 was a reasonable amount of money to spend on the festival, but ultimately agreed to fund the festival.

“We are moving right along but we’re a little behind schedule,” Ms. Dansby said in a phone interview last week.

When council approved the funding, they did not include a way for Ms. Dansby to access the funds to make purchases and pay vendors. In an effort to save the festival from being canceled, Mayor Holbert used his spending authority to advance Ms. Dansby $5,000 for the festival.

“Those funds will be reimbursed once council approves the $5,000 draw at the April [council] meeting,” he said.

Mayor Holbert informed the Finance Committee on Monday that Ms. Dansby has been contacting entertainers, businesses and potential sponsors in preparation for the event. The music festival will be held in the parking lot of Eton Chagrin Boulevard, and Eton representatives have not requested a rental fee, according to Mayor Holbert.

Ms. Dansby said that she has received inquiries from local businesses looking for a sponsorship package, and she is looking forward to partnering with businesses and community members. She said that the funding that the village provided will not cover the entire cost of the festival, leaving a gap of up to $10,000. Ms. Dansby said that she is relying on support from sponsors.

As another source of funding, Ms. Dansby said that she is working on creating a souvenir book to commemorate Woodmere’s 75th anniversary, which would be sold at the music festival.

“It will show the evolution of Woodmere,” she said. “It will talk about its history, it will not be a full photo album but it will be highly illustrated.”

The souvenir book will also have pages where a space can be purchased for a congratulatory message to the village or a local business.

“We had good feedback from the festival last year. People came from all over,” Ms. Dansby said. “We can only build from there.”

In other news, Mayor Holbert said that Stark Enterprises hopes to break ground on a new retail site in the late summer or early fall. They have proposed two new buildings at Eton West End, the lot where Chipotle and Starbucks are located on Chagrin Boulevard, and plan to use the space for two additional retail stores, according to the mayor. He said that Stark Enterprises has not released the names of the stores at the proposed development site.

Julie Hullett has been a reporter for the Chagrin Valley Times since August of 2018 and covers Gates Mills, Hunting Valley, Moreland Hills, Orange, Pepper Pike and Woodmere. She graduated from John Carroll University with a journalism degree in 2018.

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