From Staff Reports
The Athens Review
The Texas Swing Festival’s always aims to provide the area with some of the sweetest sounds of the genre.
This year, festival organizers are looking to give something more.
A Kick Off Event is scheduled for Saturday, May 11, at Roellen Ranch (2860 FM 2495 in Athens). According to Texas Swing Festival Director Michael Lenz, this year’s festival is focusing on community development rather than corporate sponsorship. Such a shift, he said, will help the event build a strong base and create sustainability.
TSF is now functioning as a non-profit and has made one of its goals to connect to other non-profits to help them reach communal and financial goals. The first partner this year is the Henderson County Humane Society.
“We will help them as they help us send a bigger message of not only our goals but also the message of what happens when organizations function together,” Lenz said. “By putting the focus on community development we are ensuring the future of the festival. When people work together they create ideas that have the ability to effect more people at a time and build ideas that have sustainability.”
Norma Lambert of the Henderson County Humane Society said her organization has never been able to find a home for every animal that comes through the gates — an average of 6,000 a year.
“We can give every animal a comfortable, caring place to be for as long as possible. We have spent $ 35,000 in grant money in the past four years to spay and neuter dogs for the public,” she said. “In addition, every animal adopted from us is fixed. The shelter uses all venues available to present our adoptable animals to the public. What we see for the future is that there would be no need for any animal to be put to sleep.”
Tickets for the Texas Swing Festival’s 2013 Kick Off Event are $50 for general admission and $150 for a VIP, all-access experience. General admission provides an evening of entertainment with the Marshall Ford Swing Band; barbecue from Cripple Creek of Athens; and beverages from Tara Winery of Cedar Creek Brewery. At the $150 level, event-goers will additionally be given access to hear Ruby Jane, with heavy hors d’oeuvres served by Railway Cafe, in addition to beverages provided by Tara Winery and Cedar Creek Brewery.
The Texas Swing Festival is scheduled for Oct. 19 at the Cain Center in Athens. For tickets or more information, call 903-677-4247 or visit texasswingfestival.com.