By Nathan Leakway
THE inaugural White Rose Music Fest drew global touring acts such as Lucero, Margo Price, and Grace Potter to PeoplesBank Park in downtown York on Oct. 7-8. It did not, however, draw a very large crowd.
“It was a terrific event featuring amazing performers,” Doug Eppler, director of marketing and communications for the York Revolution, said. “It was very, very well executed. Unfortunately, it was also very poorly attended.”
The event was a collaborative effort between York College and the York Revolution, a partnership that goes back to the team’s founding in 2006.
“We partnered with the York Revolution so that they could handle the advertising, logistics, and ticket sales,” YCP President Pamela-Gunther Smith said during a recent conversation with The Spartan staff. “It was a partnership to bring [music] to enhance the city.”
An endowment provided by a YCP donor helped to fund the event, according to Gunther-Smith, who said the endowment was given in order “to bring music to campus.”
Kristen Gurreri, senior director of college development at the Office of College Advancement, led efforts to spread word about the White Rose Music Fest to students and alumni. Discounted tickets were available for YCP students, and those that attended the event were able to watch the show from the 1741 Club, a private club that has its own suite at PeoplesBank Park.
“We were thrilled to have around 125 people in the 1741 Suite both nights,” said Gurreri. “Attendees included students, alumni, faculty, and staff, which gave these groups a wonderful opportunity to mingle and mix.”
Gurerri’s office was not involved with inviting guests from the wider York community, and focused instead on filling the 1741 Club, which overlooks the ballfield.
Gurreri also mentioned low general attendance, but said “the suite we were in felt very full and lively, and overall attendance did not impact the experience for our guests.”
Both Gurreri and Eppler expressed a desire to do things differently the next time around.
“I think if we were to participate in the festival again, I would want to take a more active role in the overall marketing to get the word out more to individuals on campus,” Gurreri said. “I also think, because this was the first year, a lot of people did not know what to expect which made it challenging. I think it would be much easier to promote for future years.”
Eppler said, “We’ll have to give serious consideration to [see] if there are ways to improve and repeat the event.”
A second White Rose Music Fest has yet to be put on the calendar, but the Office of College Advancement at Alumni Relations is currently involved in planning numerous other events for YCP students to attend, including a trip to a Philadelphia Flyers game on Nov. 8.
A more comprehensive list of events can be found here.
Nathan Leakway is a sophomore majoring in Professional Writing.