City weighs in on Windscape future
If Windscape and Long Day’s Night fold, the negative economic impact on the southwest could be serious. The loss of the Windscape Kite Festival, and the subsequent Long Day’s Night Music Festival, would strike multiple industries at the busiest time of year for Saskatchewan tourism. Local hotels, restaurants and shops could be facing a loss of thousands of visitors which uphold them. Jim Jones, the chief administrative officer of City of Swift Current, has helped support Windscape with the City in the past. “Any time that you lose a major event to the city, you're going to feel the impact of that in hotel rooms and meals,” said Jones. “The money that's brought in from out of town is important to the city and important to the businesses. You get volunteer burnout, and this group has done it for a long time and kudos to them. But a lot of them are just deciding that it's time.” If the festivals officially dissolve, the assets are claimed by the City. Jones stated that if that were the case, it would be difficult to continue the event economically. The City would have a great deal in finding funding for the events, as much of Windscape’s funding comes from grants which are solely designated for non-profit organizations. With these difficulties, it is possible that if Windscape can’t gather support, it may be gone completely and indefinitely. “There are other uses for that land, one specifically is the cricket pitch that we put out there,” explained Jones. “It's got all the electrical hookups, and the locations for tents. I'm not convinced that it's done yet; anything that's getting organized by Shann Gowan ends up happening because she's really good at that... Our General Manager of Cultural and Aquatic Services Melissa Shaw is working with them quite closely trying to help them get to the point where they can see if they can continue or not.” Jones suspects that the organization may make an appearance in city hall, and present with hopes for increased funding from the city. However, with the upcoming budget deliberation, as many as 10 of these appeals are expected to be made. In response to Canada's Online News Act and Meta (Facebook and Instagram) removing access to local news from their platforms, Swift Current Online encourages you to get your news directly from your trusted source by bookmarking this page and downloading the Swift Current Online app.