FIL

Festival International de Louisiane is asking fans (and non fans if there is such a thing) to fill out a survey gauging attendance habits, music preferences, purchases and other aspects of the annual Francophone music/culture celebration held the last weekend of April.

A crown jewel of Lafayette’s cultural life, FIL has enjoyed spectacular growth over the last decade — growth that even Festival staff and board members acknowledge is causing growing pains as organizers cope with roughly 400,000 attendees in a very limited Downtown Lafayette. As we reported in our June 2014 cover story, “Fest Fix”:

Festival International’s 2014 budget was roughly $1.4 million. The financials on this year’s event aren’t in yet, but most years FIL just breaks even — that is to say its revenues equal or slightly exceed its overhead. For a nonprofit that’s OK. But for a one-off annual event that depends on the cooperation of Mother Nature, it’s also in a potentially perilous position.

FIL’s 2012 Form 990, which nonprofits file with the Internal Revenue Service (2012 is the most recent year available at GuideStar.com, a nonprofit-tracking website, and covers the 2011 festival), FIL’s revenue was $1,009,806 but its total expenses were $1,010,680, meaning it cost $684 more to put on Festival than it earned in revenue. For such a major event that’s not bad at all and represents a remarkable level of management dexterity, and fortunately the nonprofit festival listed a little more than $385,000 in the bank. But, imagine again a Friday, Saturday and Sunday of FIL with inclement weather. That little financial pillow quickly becomes a whoopee cushion.

Take the survey here.

Read “Fest Fix” here.

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