8 Sep 2011

Local Store Owner Proudly Supports Arts Festival

Author: Colin Andrews | Filed under: Black Swamp Arts Festival

Floyd Craft may be familiar name for those living in the greater Bowling Green, Ohio area. Residents may have seen him in either the Ben Franklin or Ace Hardware shops, both of which he owns. However, some residents may not know that Craft is a long time supporter of the annual Black Swamp Arts Festival.

Black Swamp Arts Festival 2011 Logo, Photo Credit: blackswamparts.org

Mr. Craft has been with the Black Swamp Arts Festival since the beginning – 19 years ago. The dream of having a community arts festival started before that, though.

“The festival is something near to my heart, it was something we [art lovers] wanted to do ten or so years before it even started” he said.

Craft is in charge of budgeting for the festival. The store owner admits that some years finding the money to put on the festival is harder than other years.

“We don’t have a sponsor this year, and that is a loss of about $10,000,” Craft said.

Although Craft won’t say exactly how much it costs to put on the festival, he did allude to it being six figures.

When money is tight volunteers step up to help and Craft is grateful for their hard work and dedication.

“Some of our volunteers have been with us since the beginning, and they mean a lot to the festival,” he said.

The weather can oftentimes be a challenge when having an outdoor festival, and Craft is ever aware of that.

“I’m hoping the weather clears out, we still have to pay the artists regardless, even if it rains,” Craft said.

Even if the weather doesn’t cooperate, Craft is optimistic that the Black Swamp Arts Festival will go on for many years.

“The first year was almost the last year we had [the festival] due to the weather, but we ended up okay… even if it rains this year we’ll survive,” he said.

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