It’s been a long journey for the Twilight Dance Series this year. At first, it was reasonable to question whether or not Santa Monica would even be able to fund the summer dance series which was facing a $92,000 budget shortfall this year.
Funds were needed. First the City Council stepped in, approving a $35,000 matching grant. Following that, the Pier Restoration Corp. was able to raise $47,776, funding enough to qualify for the Councilï¿½s challenge grant. But still, more funds were needed.
Toward the end of March, the City Council voted to increases fees for the historic Carousel on the pier. This increase, although necessary to fund the expensive maintenance of the Carousel and counteract it’s own more-than $100,000 budget shortfall, produced a surplus of $50,000 to be allocated to the TDS.
At that point, the TDS had enough funding to secure seven performance ï¿½ its minimum number of performances. Next, the PRC board of directors voted to authorized the Executive Director, Ben Franz-Knight, raise additional funds to secure more performances.
Answering the call for community partners, Bayside District Corporation (BDC) has stepped up with a $20,000.00 sponsorship of the Twilight Dance Series on the Santa Monica Pier.
ï¿½Both the staff and Board felt strongly that we needed to show our support for this beloved event. The Twilight Dance Series has grown beyond a local summer tradition in Santa Monica, itï¿½s beneficial to the entire Los Angeles area,ï¿½ said Kathleen Rawson, CEO of Bayside District Corporation.
The sponsorship is a win-win for both the Pier Restoration Corporation (PRC) and Bayside District Corporation. It enables the PRC to add another concert back into the line-up, with fundraising efforts now just over $155,000.00. It also provides Downtown Santa Monica with visibility at the well-attended concert each Thursday evening. Many of the 10,000 attendees park in the Downtown structures and either come early or stay late to meet friends, eat dinner, do a little shopping or just walk around.
“I’m thrilled to see the outpouring of support and the most recent partnership with our sister organization, Bayside District Corporation, to guarantee an eighth concert at this beloved series” said Kent Smith, Chair of the Pier Restoration Corporation Board. “This is fantastic news and makes us all realize what can be accomplished when we all work together.”
Bayside District Corporation hopes to encourage this symbiotic relationship between the Pier and Downtown. ï¿½Itï¿½s natural that people enjoy both areas when they come for the concerts. It”s such a short walk and when the weather is great, as it is during the summer, a stroll from the Pier through Palisades Park into Downtown is a fantastic way to spend the evening, ï¿½ stated Kelley Wallace, Board Member and Chair of the Marketing Committee for Bayside.
Executive Director of the PRC Ben Franz-Knight said, ï¿½We are excited to partner with Bayside District and look forward to a summer program that integrates all aspects of our wonderful beachside community. The generosity of Bayside District puts us one step closer to a full summer of free concerts.ï¿½
Santa Monica Mirrorstaff@smmirror.com