So Bend Film, according to a story in The Source, seems to be having trouble.
There seems to be a bit of pattern here.
First of all, any art festival in Bend is going to have trouble reaching critical mass. Cascade music is gone; Bend Film is struggling -- even some sports events have trouble, for instance the big golf tournament (The Tradition? Oxymoron, eh?)
Cause we in Bend seem to forget we are a small town in the middle of nowhere.
The thing to do in Bend is to go ahead and try to present yourself as a big city kind of deal -- but never lose sight of the fact that you aren't.
Don't just ask yourself what will happen if everything goes right, also ask yourself what will happen if everything goes wrong.
You ask yourself if the event can survive the "founder" moving on. Or whoever is the motivating force.
Try to take into account the normal up and down cycles. For a small group, for instance, a good rule of thumb I once read is to have 3 times more regular members than the number you need for a meeting. So if you need 8 people for a meeting, having 24 members is safe. So there will be times you'll get 15, and times you'll get 5, but you average out. I'm sure bigger events have similar rules of thumb.
You have to remember that the newness wears off -- the excitement of the new.
By the way, all this applies for small businesses, too --- maybe more so.
The interesting thing about the article about Bend Film is that most of the boosters seem to feel that the organization isn't thinking "big" enough. While it struggles for cash in the real world.
My sister, Betsy, who runs a longtime non-profit choir in Seattle, says that lots of arts organizations are having trouble raising money these days, which stands to reason.
But unless one of these big thinker boosters is willing to step forward with a cash infusion, I think Bend Film is probably settling into more realistic aspirations.
4 days ago