What do we really know about festivals? We’ve got music festivals, beer festivals, and the list goes on and on as we sit around with our friends planning our next adventure. At the surface, festivals give us music, treats, and various forms of entertainment while we also gain a fun escape to create memories that will last us a lifetime. It just sounds like the perfect win-win situation.
Let’s dig in deeper and take a look at how they benefit different groups across the spectrum. You’ve got your artists and vendors here trying to make a living and most importantly, a name for themselves! Luckily, they get to frolic along this platform and share their work, network, and grow. This is what makes our world go round.
When it comes down to it, globalization and economic growth are at the core. We will glimpse at how the spread of businesses and philosophies around the world as one interconnected marketplace serve as a powerful tool.
According to The Wall Street Journal, last year’s festivals pumped $3.2 billion into the U.S economy alone and even though that might sound impressive, the total domestic product totals more than $16 trillion. Obviously, these festivals aren’t happening in our backyards so we must also take into account the triggers on spending on hotels, flights, and other costs while also creating up to 25,000 full-time jobs here in the states.
Music festivals are contributing so much to our local economy that it’s no surprise other countries are catching on. I’ll share two examples of how festivals are redefining globalization and its impact on economic growth.
Lantern Festivals are one to take note of. The origin remains unclear, but is deeply rooted in traditional religion and mythology in the Chinese culture starting in 206 BC and only growing from there. Now, you can find a Lantern Festival here in the states where you can light the night sky with your wishes as you enjoy the presence of musical acts and vendors. Face it, if you catch yourself at one of these festivals you know darn right that you’re not there to celebrate ancient Chinese religion and there’s no problem with that!
It’s 2016 for crying out loud, and if you want to post these lanterns on your Snapchat, then go for it. The origin of this festival is what led our country picking it up as our own and as a way to entertain and generate revenue. We all pick up from one another and make it work to our advantage.
Now that America has picked this up, let’s see what another county is putting down.
Behold, the 16-foot tall drum in Nigeria. Last week thousands of guests attended the Nigerian Drum festival. Drums are the sensual parts of their culture and day to day experiences and took this as their own measures to boost their general tourism activity and generate revenue.
We are seeing how the magic of bringing people together influences other areas. Dayo Keshi, Director General of the National Council for Arts and Culture in Nigeria states, “The festival presents one of the best ways to integrate and generate economic growth right from the grassroots to international levels.” This is a great example of how the economic success in America has influenced others to gain as well.
Looking at these different examples at a micro/macro economic level – America has reaped the benefits of festivals throughout the years and now we are seeing how it impacts other countries.
We love festivals. We live for festivals! For us civilians we are satisfying our own ego-centric desires to hang out with our friends and skip along the festival grounds, but through our selfish acts, who knows, maybe we are making the world a better place. Not only do these activities promote love, peace, and unity in the festival setting itself, but they also frame the whole picture for the world we live in and promoting growth in other parts of the world.
So, I’ll leave you with this. Where will your next festival take you?