Pirate Fest 2015 was the first of three new festivals hosted by the City of Northglenn with a desire to increase its unique brand as a city and also elevate the quality of life for both residents and visitors.
“We wanted to better connect with …
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“We wanted to better connect with our residents and draw people to our city,” said Northglenn Mayor Joyce Downing. “Residents are proud that we have these new events. The crowds get larger each year. Visitors are seeing Northglenn in a new and different way, one that is energized and forward-thinking.”
In 2014, the City of Northglenn created a “strategic plan focused on vitalization, civic engagement and a renewed sense of community,” said Margo Aldrich, Northglenn’s public communications manager.
With this in mind, the city hired Steven Stokes as the events supervisor to oversee three brand-new events and three already established events for the city. The city wanted to be known for more than it was at the time, and they realized one of the ways to do this was through big events.
Stokes, who has a background in building large-scale events, said one of the original ideas was the Pirate Fest, which was really outside of the box. Other ideas were a wine festival and a barbecue festival, but those types of festivals could be found everywhere.
If Northglenn wanted to be unique, its festivals needed to be unique.This desire fueled the creation of Food Truck Carnival and Magic Fest (the new event for 2017).
“There isn’t another magic festival in Colorado,” Stokes explained.
Pirate Fest and Food Truck Carnival, the new event for 2016, were both hugely successful. Pirate Fest’s attendance increased from 7,000 in 2015 to 11,000 in 2016. Food Truck Carnival had a whopping 30,000 attendees last year — in a city with 38,000 residents.
Stokes said they had only planned on about 10,000 attendees for the Food Truck Carnival.
“About two weeks prior to the event we started to get a good sense that we were going to have more than expected, and we called all the reserve backup food trucks we knew.”
Although they ran out of food that first year, Stokes said it was great for the community.
The businesses at the Webster Lake Promenade were packed. Cracker Barrel had its single best sales night ever on Friday night.
The six events Stokes currently oversees are Food Truck Carnival – May 12-14; Kid’s Fishing Derby and HEAL (Healthy Eating and Living) Bike Rodeo – June 3; July 4th Festival – July 4; Magic Festival – Aug. 18-19; Pirate Festival – Sept. 15-16; and Noel November – Dec. 1.
But in an effort to hit a multitude of target audiences, the City of Northglenn presents more than 40 events each year
“If you’re an athlete, you might go to the mud volleyball tournament. If you love live music, you’re going to go to the summer concert series.If you’re the guy who likes food trucks, you’re going to go to Food Truck Carnival,” Stokes said.
So, if you’re into pirates, magic, fishing, food or just having a good ol’ time, mark your calendars in advance so you don’t miss one of Northglenn’s signature events.
Visit https://www.northglenn.org/events to learn more about these festivals and all the other events Northglenn has to offer.
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