Fresno Arts Community Feeling Recession

February 26, 2009 7:25:19 PM PST
A major art festival is about to start in Fresno in the midst of the city's arts community taking major hits. The Rogue Festival is starting its eight years. Friday will be the Rogue Festival's first full day of performances which includes dance, film and art. Organizers are confident people will attend despite the recession. But just like Fresno's art community, they are feeling the effects

Volunteers like Brad Polzin are getting ready for the Rogue! 65 individuals and groups will entertain crowds over the next John Jordin producers Rogue. Jordin said, "We're having more performs from out of the city. So, we have people from London and Canada and around the country." He said they and their sponsors are feeling the recession, "Our sponsors were still involved, but they couldn't give quiet as much money this year. So that is unfortunate. We're keeping our head up."

Fresno's art scene is struggling. Arte Americas is falling behind on bills. Several liens have been filed against the museum. One builder claims they are owned nearly $300 thousand for recent renovations at the museum. The troubles don't stop there.

Elizabeth Laval is trying to preserve her great grandfather Pop Laval's collection. But with the recession, Elizabeth said donations are down 50 percent. She hopes to recoup that money with a major fundraiser in March. Laval said, "We have a really critical two to four months right now. I think if we can get through this time period with the help of the community then we will be ok."

Laval and the Rogue share one thing in common- they both have to work harder during the tough economy.

Rogue organizers said last year they sold 12-thousand tickets. All tickets range from four to seven dollars. Organizers hope people consider that bargain and cutting edge entertainment.

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