On Tuesday, March 23, the City Council voted to increase funding for the Twilight Dance Series by $50,000. The one-time funding, combined with over $47,776 raised by the community and corporate sponsors, will ensure that there will be dancing on the deckboards for at least seven Thursday evenings come July.
The Council’s vote increases fees for the Carousel on the pier. This increase is directly aimed at making the Carousel self-sufficient, as it has been operating at a deficit of more than $100,000 and requires regular maintenance.
However, the fee increase produces the extra $50,000, which will be allocated as the one-time fund to the Twilight Dance Series (TDS), which was in danger due to its own budget shortfall this year, as a one-time allocation. This was the indirect result of the Council’s vote.
The carousel fees will increase for persons over 14-years-old to $2, instead of $1. The fare for children between three- and 14-years-old who were previously free of charge, will be charged $1. Children aged two and under will ride for free if accompanied by a ticketed adult.
“I’m gratified that the community and the Council pulled together to support this great summer tradition,” said Kent Smith, Chair of the Pier Restoration Corporation Board, “The fact that we’re seeing this kind of support in a difficult year means a lot.”
A community fundraising effort by the PRC and additional outreach to corporate sponsors has raised $47,776, funding enough to qualify for the Council’s challenge grant.
On Wednesday, March 24, the Pier Restoration Corporation Board of Directors voted to authorize the Executive Director to produce a minimum of seven concerts, and granted the ED the ability to approve additional concerts up to a maximum of ten within the budget based on additional funds raised.
Executive Director of the PRC Ben Franz-Knight said, “We have tremendous momentum and securing a minimum of seven shows in the last two weeks is a tribute to the community support for this event. It is critical that the support from the community and corporate sponsors continue so that we are able to produce as many quality concerts as possible.”
To make a donation or learn more about the Twilight Dance Series visit www.santamonicapier.org.