The city of Summerside is changing the way it funds the Summerside Lobster Carnival.
According to the city’s budget, which was released Monday, the event was provided with a little more than $86,000 from the public coffers for its 2017 edition, but will only get $20,000 in 2018.
Kristan Dunsford, manager with the city’s finance department, explained that the municipality is trying to make the carnival more self-sufficient going forward.
“At some point we may see that the city itself is not having to contribute anything for that festival,” said Dunsford.
Greater than expected sponsorship revenue for the 2017 event, coupled with some other factors, meant that Culture Summerside, which manages the carnival, didn’t need to tap into as much of its municipally provided funding as expected.
Rather than redistribute the surplus funds, the city decided to leave the money with the carnival’s non-profit organization to help seed future carnivals.
Dunsford added that despite the reduction in direct funding from the city this year, the 2018 festival is expected to be on par, in terms of size, with last year.
The city took over the Summerside Lobster Carnival in 2013 after its long-time operators, a consortium of community groups, gradually pulled out. The event was briefly rebranded the Summerside Lobster Festival before reverting to its original name for 2017. Last year was also the first where the management of the event was moved to Culture Summerside.