We have received inquiries regarding Old School Square’s cancellation of the “Big Game Watch Party,” originally planned for this evening. In an effort to be transparent and offer clarity, we would like to let people know the facts.
At the time that Old School Square made this decision, the weather forecast projected 80% rain and cold. Due to the weather projections, the financial risks associated with renting a gigantic digital screen that is not weatherproof, and a perceived lack of sponsorship interest, we regretfully had to cancel.
Originally, Old School Square had secured a sponsor whose sponsorship dollars would have covered the costs associated with the rental of the screen; however, they pulled out of the event (prior to our decision to cancel) due to the cold and rain that was projected at the time. Because this was a free event, there was no ticketing in place that allowed us to project attendance.
Additionally, we had intended to offer a minimum of three food trucks on Old School Square’s grounds, as added value around this free event. Last week, two food trucks cancelled. These cancellations took place just before we secured our third food truck. Without having food trucks at the event we would not have had as much value to offer the public, leading to low attendance of this complimentary event.
In conclusion, Old School Square is a non-profit organization. In the instances when we offer free events to the community (which is our mission, we love doing and will continue to do), our costs must be offset by things such as concessions, chair rentals, sponsors, etc. The projections of bad weather, the cancellations of our food vendors and our sponsor, paired with the high costs associated with renting the digital screen and staffing this free event, we had no choice other than to regretfully cancel. If this could not be a successful event, the negative financial impact of this complimentary event would have been considerable for Old School Square.
Old School Square is a 501(c3) charitable organization that is sustained on donations, gifts and grants. We had to make the most fiscally responsible decision for our donors and our staff. We sincerely hope that you can understand the rational behind this most difficult decision and we appreciate your continued support and patronage.
—Elise Johnson, Chairman of the Board, Old School Square