The stage set for the Australian Blues Festival in 2020 with a new vision and ideas by the Australian National Events (ANE), which has been appointed to run the festival for the next five years.
Narooma-based ANE was appointed to run the event after Geoff Bell's firm, Laing Entertainment, did not lodge an expression of interest this year after running the Blues Festival for nine years.
With the change in the management of the company, the festival will now be a ticketed event.
"If you have an event that people don't have to pay for, it doesn't have a value," said David White, ANE's business development manager, speaking at a Goulburn Connect event.
"You have to have a value on the event to make it work."
Mr White reiterated that blues music festivals across the country were ticketed events. Goulburn's "ticket price will probably be $25, early bird," Mr White said.
The company is banking on funds from Goulburn Mulwaree Council, some venues and sponsors for next year's event.
"Once we turn it into a ticketed event, and after recovering the cost, we won't have to rely on anybody for money," Mr White said.
"We have to get it to a self-funding situation. The aim is to make it beneficial for the town."
He cited collection of data as another important reason for having a ticketed event.
"If you can't collect data, you won't be able to get government grants and can't tell traders how many people came into town and how much they have spent," Mr White said.
"We need to collect such data and build a database."
The organisers are also looking at promoting Goulburn as a destination venue.
"We will use this opportunity to promote Blues Music Festival as a destination event showcasing the locations in and around Goulburn as well as the experience of visiting the region," Mr White said.
"We want people to have an interest in the city so that they would want to come back with their family and friends."
The organisers are working towards building a strong relationship with the community and stakeholders.
"We will have an information session for residents and traders, deliver the proposed program, discover community concepts, identify opportunities for growth, development and methodology for the future," Mr White said.
The organisers will also start the 'Schoolyard Blues' program for emerging performers from schools and community groups that will showcase the talent of those in the Goulburn district.
"We are looking at engaging with local schools and tertiary institutions to deliver the program," Mr White said.
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