Not only did the Traverse City Winter Comedy Arts Festival seem to really come into its own this year, with a 40 percent jump in ticket admissions from 2011, but teaming up with the National Cherry Festival turned the festival into a community celebration.
Events on Front Street, which was turned into a winter playground for the weekend, brought thousands of people, including many parents with kids, a non-typical audience for a comedy festival.
Do it all again should be a no-brainer.
As for the Comedy Festival itself, 60,000 ticket admissions is an incredible number.
Deb Lake, executive director of the Traverse City Film Festival, which put on the event with the National Cherry Festival, said many events were maxed out.
“We had several events that sold out and good houses at almost everything.”
All this says two things: Give families with kids free things to do (and a way to get out of cold when necessary) and they will come; and combining the efforts of two groups with large volunteer bases can create something bigger than the sum of their parts.
Lake and National Cherry Festival Executive Director Trevor Tkach said they’re already looking ahead to next year. The festival will stick to the Presidents’ Day weekend, Lake said; and there may also be an expansion of offering on Front Street.