The tents are going up and the stage lights are being programed all in anticipation of a stellar 2009 Panama City Beach Seafood, Wine and Music Festival. Crews have been working all week to get everything ready for the big name bands coming through, Styx and Grand Funk Railroad and all the other huge (and not so huge) names. “This year’s ticket sales are going very well, pacing better than last year,” humbly said by one of the promoters.
I was told that they will have nearly twice as many vendors for this festival than they did last year. “It was not hard at all this year convincing people to bring their products to our event, compared to last year,” said Jeanne Ryan, whose handling all the logistics for the vendors and where they will be place. She said the fact that they had a lot more time to get the word out this year. Last year, the event organizers had 90 days from the time they were awarded the ability to do the festival to the date of the event. Mere weeks after last year’s event, they started planning for this year’s; and it paid off.
Of course, I’m sure that it helps that vendor space is pretty cheap too. An artist can come set up for a small $100 fee and commercial vendors only have to pay $250 for a booth. As I understand it, this is way cheap for an event like this. Jeanne said the quality of products coming in this year will be high.
As it stands they were technically sold out of vendor space as of two weeks ago, but they are still squeezing people in where they can. Talking with Thunder Beach folks in the past, I know that usually festivals and events are scratching for vendors even up to the last minute, so this is highly encouraging of a great event this year. I was on site earlier and overheard one of the event promoters talking about some hospitality groups comment on how many people were asking about the event and that accommodations were way up this weekend – which is what really pays off for the area!
This year’s festival sure has tons of buzz with the coming of Styx and Grand Funk Railroad. We had tons of response on our free ticket post, probably by the time you are reading this winners have been chosen. I’m excited to see all the people that will be out, this weekend is sure to be great!Print Story