LISA HOPELESS – We now move on to festival funding. To give an overview of how things stand at the moment, we have with us none other than the city’s Festival Guy.
COUNCILLOR CURMUDGEON – Before Festival Guy begins his presentation, I’d like to ask him a question: What is Victoria’s longest running festival?
FESTIVAL GUY – That would be the Highland Games which will be celebrating its 155th year in 2018.
COUNCILLOR CURMUDGEON – This guy’s good.
COUNCILLOR LOVEFLAKE – I guess it gives you hope there’s something that’s actually been around longer than you have, Councillor Curmudgeon.
COUNCILLOR CURMUDGEON – Odds are I’ll outlast you too—at least as far as city council goes.
LISA HOPELESS – Save that for after the meeting, boys. Festival Guy please continue.
FESTIVAL GUY – Thank-you, mayor. The city’s festival budget is about $220,000 a year. However, the requests for funding are double that amount.
COUNCILLOR LOVEFLAKE – Perhaps it’s time we culled some of the weaker events. The Accordian and Tango Festival, for instance. That’s flaky even by my standards.
COUNCILLOR CURMUDGEON – And that’s saying something!
FESTIVAL GUY – The festival is attempting to rebrand itself.
COUNCILLOR LOVEFLAKE – I hate to say it, but I can’t imagine all the rebranding in the world is going to save this one.
COUNCILLOR CURMUDGEON – For once Councillor Loveflake and I agree on something.
COUNCILLOR LOVEFLAKE – Perhaps council should consider redirecting the funds from the Accordian and Tango Festival to a proven commodity such as FernFest.
FESTIVAL GUY – But FernFest already receives funding under the neighbourhood grants program.
COUNCILLOR LOVEFLAKE – This isn’t the average block party we’re talking about.
FESTIVAL GUY – True. FernFest is about three times larger than the next biggest neighbourhood event.
COUNCILLOR LOVEFLAKE – And the festival organizers recently approached me with a request to double the size of the beer tent. I’ve heard the mayor talk many times about making the tent bigger. Well here’s your big chance, Lisa.
LISA HOPELESS – Inclusiveness is important.
COUNCILLOR LOVEFLAKE – And what could be more inclusive than members of the Fernwood community carousing and getting shitfaced together.
COUNCILLOR CURMUDGEON – I suppose the beer tent provides you with the perfect platform to mingle with your constituents.
COUNCILLOR LOVEFLAKE – These are my people!
COUNCILLOR CURMUDGEON – Drunkards, poets, urban farmers, hipster baristas, union shills, performance artists. Quite the political coalition you’ve managed to cobble together, Councillor Loveflake. Just better hope the next election isn’t decided by tango dancers and accordion players.