May has arrived and with it more information from our State and City officials on happenings and events taking place in the Twin Cities and beyond. Like every other non-profit organization, the Saint Paul Festival and Heritage Foundation is feeling the effects of the Governor’s state shut down directive, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
We have had to postpone not only our annual Cinco de Mayo celebration, but two of our spring fundraising events. Combined with the closing of our four gambling establishments, we are looking at a loss to the Foundation of over $60,000 thus far in 2020.
The cost to run Festivals in Minnesota has increased as well. To run a FREE festival, our Foundation needs to pay:
- Annual insurance costs that are now crossed over the $45,000 per year threshold.
- Parade costs that are now close to $15,000 each.
- Police and Security costs that have increased 100% over the last 18 months
- Utility fees including hooded meters, street barricades, garbage pickup, and rentals that have tripled in the past three years.
- Monthly expenses to run the Foundation and keep us operating 12 months a year are now close to $15,000 per month (rent, utilities, accounting and audits, payroll, computers, web site, and more)
- Propane & Diesel that is used to power and heat the Winter Carnival averages $20,000 a year.
- The Foundation does not have a marketing budget, we rely on our gracious media partners, Hubbard Broadcasting, Pioneer Press & I Heart radio, to support us.
The Board of Directors and our CEO have been working hard every day to keep the Foundation financially sound through these unprecedented times. We applied for and received a Payroll Protection Assistance as part of the CARES Act, which will help us with payroll and other expenses this summer. Our board and our Finance Committee are always looking for ways to bring in new revenue.
A fun way to support the Foundation is happening tomorrow night (5/6); 6:30-8:30pm on our Facebook page:
Join us for our very first #WinterCarnivalWednesday! Kick back and enjoy a virtual concert from the comfort of your home! We are asking for a suggested donation of $20 to enjoy the show with us. There will be other opportunities throughout the night for larger contributors, along with prize giveaways from the band, and the Winter Carnival. We hope to see you all on-line tomorrow night. Thank you to SPIRE Credit Union for their contributions to the event!
The SPFHF has had serious challenges in years past and because of support from our members, sponsors, and volunteers, we overcame them. We have survived 134 years thus far and the members of this Board and our CEO are determined to buckle down to overcome the financial issues before us. We will continue to fulfill our mission to foster a sense of community pride, belonging and connectedness by producing and promoting community education, programs, festivals, along with other celebrations for the enjoyment of the people of Saint Paul and its surrounding communities and keep the SPFHF viable for decades to come!
Thank you for your continued support of the Saint Paul Festival and Heritage Foundation. These are scary and uncertain times for non-profits and the teamwork I see happening every day with Board Members, Foundation staff, sponsors, and volunteers, is inspiring!
SPFHF Board Chair
How can you help?
As we enter into our 135th year celebrating The Coolest Celebration Earth, your support is needed now more than ever, to help us regain some of our lost income.. Please take a moment and renew your membership today by visiting our website www.wintercarnival.com and click on “become a member”, complete the enclosed form and mail it with your payment, or Text 44-321 and enter SPFHF. Our fiscal year runs June 1st-May 31st so now is the time!
- Our SPFHF Golf Tournament is still a go for June 29th. Sign up today or sponsor a hole:
- Sip & Savor has been postponed until October 7th – Tickets are on sale now