Rep. Jon Hardister Announces Legislation to Provide Grant for North Carolina Folk Festival
Raleigh, NC – Today Rep. Jon Hardister (R-Guilford, Majority Whip) filed HB 40 – NC Folk Festival Funds – which would provide a $100,000 grant for the North Carolina Folk Festival. Reps. John Faircloth (R-Guilford), Pricey Harrison (D-Guilford) and Amos Quick (D-Guilford) joined Hardister as primary sponsors of the bill.
The purpose of these funds, which will be used for marketing and operational expenses, are intended to promote the success of the Festival.
Two years ago the Festival rebranded, incorporated “North Carolina” in its name, and chose to remain the Triad. Research has indicated that over 500,000 people have attended the Festival since 2015, with over 150,000 people attending last year. The estimated annual economic impact is $15 million, which is as a result of accommodations, hotels, travel, food, shopping and related expenses. (Much of this research was complied at UNC-Greensboro.)
The Festival promotes not only the Triad region, but North Carolina as a whole. Participants come both from across the state and Southeast U.S., as well as cultural tourists from abroad. Not only is the Festival beneficial to our economy, it also promotes our state, contributes to North Carolina’s tourism industry, and makes NC a vibrant destination for attracting young creatives and a skilled workforce to the region to live and work.
“The North Carolina Folk Festival is a major asset for economic development and tourism,” Hardister said. “It is great to see the creativity, diversity and energy that is generated by the Festival. It is my hope that we can build on past success and make the festival even more successful in the future.”
Rep. Faircloth added, “Attendees and performers in the festival are, by their travel, lodging, meal and event purchases, benefitting not only Greensboro but indeed the entire Triad. It is yet another attraction that can make our part of the Old North State the place to be for both business and entertainment.”
Rep. Quick spoke highly of the Festival legislation saying, “The North Carolina Folk Festival is a wonderful event that brings together disparate segments of our state and nation to one place to enjoy the diversity of creativity. My support of this legislation is so that we may continue to enjoy this rich diversity and the economic boon it provides to the Piedmont.”
“The Folk Festival has already won the hearts of so many thousands of fans statewide and beyond,” said North Carolina Folk & Heritage Festival board member Lawrence Czarda. “We are grateful for the efforts of Rep. Jon Hardister, along with co-sponsors Pricey Harrison, John Faircloth and Amos Quick in support of this bi-partisan effort. The Festival is a true celebration of both our State and nation’s roots and heritage, as well as an economic engine and cultural tourist attraction.”
Czarda noted that more than half-a-million people have enjoyed the event since 2015, including more than 150,000 last September.
Here is a link to the bill: