This year marks the 10th and final Independents' Day Festival.
From its humble roots Downtown, it has grown into a jam-packed, two-day extravaganza in Franklinton—arguably the premier Central Ohio music festival in a calendar full of music festivals. So why end now?
“You've got a quarter-million-dollar budget, and you see that $90,000 of that is going toward artists, bands, musicians,” explains festival co-founder Adam Brouillette. “But then there's the whole other part of the budget that's barricades, police. Should we reanalyze how we spend our money? [Are] the permit and the barricades and the police really what you are having the festival for?”
But the end of the annual festival doesn't necessarily mean the end of the idea. “It means that the current iteration of this has run its course,” Brouillette says. “Now we have to reinvent what we do.”
In the course of a 90-minute conversation, Brouillette discusses at least four or five ideas, any of which may soon be Independents' Day events. “What happens if instead of having a big street festival, we spend $10,000 in a partnership with BalletMet?” he asks. “We get two local bands to write music and have an Independents' Day at the ballet.”
Brouillette often returns to the idea that Independents' Day as we knew it is no longer as necessary as it was 10 years ago. “The need for an Independents' Day as it has been in the past is not the same,” he says. “There [are] craft fairs everywhere. There's a craft brewery every stone's throw away. Now we're just throwing a big party, and there [are] lots of parties.” thisisindependent.com