Behind the Scenes: Bend Festivals

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Members of the Bend community gather to paint near Mirror Pond, Oct. 2, during Bend's annual Fall Festival

Bend, Oregon holds a lot of festivals each year: there are seasonal festivals such as the recent Fall Fest, cultural festivals such as the upcoming BendFilm Fest, and even celebrations of excellent local brews like Oktoberfest.

Hosting an event takes commitment from the community, support from local companies, and a great team of dedicated people. Cameron Clark is an event producer whose company, C3 Events, hosts many of the local free festivals that Bend locals know and love for the last two decades.

Bend’s abundance of free festivals is thanks in part to the support and sponsorship of local companies that can help sustain the cost of holding so many each year.

“Bend is the most generous city I think I’ll ever encounter. The corporate community is profoundly generous,” said Clark.

C3 Events is the local event production company behind well-known events such as Summer and Fall Fest, Munch & Movies, and many other arts and cultural events. They even put on the seasonal Saturday Farmers Market. C3 acts as an important backbone of our cultural community.

Clark has been producing arts and cultural events for over 25 years; and the first series he created after moving to Bend, “Munch and Music,” is still going strong.

Michelle Roats, festival director at C3 Events, says, “Unlike other cities across the country, Bendites have worked hard to create a great sense of community. ‘Gathering’ is key to creating that sense of community and events provide a perfect opportunity to do so. It is hard to go to an event in Bend and NOT run into someone you may know! We are believers in community building.”

On October 2-4, the familiar Fall Festival, sponsored by Bank of the Cascades, was held on the streets of downtown Bend. Fall Fest features music and dance performances, artists and craftspeople with booths, and gourmet food and drinks. It drew people from all over Bend and surrounding areas.

After a long and busy season of great festivals, Roats says that getting rest is the first item on the agenda. Next on the list is planning for the 2016 season, starting with Bend Spring Festival in April.

 

Bethany Langer | The Broadside
(Contact: blanger@cocc.edu)

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