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    Profits boost Super Bowl jazz concert

    By MAUREEN BYRNE

    © St. Petersburg Times, published November 2, 2000


    CLEARWATER -- The Clearwater Jazz Holiday came out ahead on this year's event, and organizers say the surplus will help pay for a daylong jazz concert on Super Bowl weekend.

    To date, the four-day festival is $42,000 in the black, said Clearwater Jazz Holiday executive director Karen Vann.

    "It was a very good year for us," she said.

    The $42,000 will be used as seed money for the Super Bowl event and next year's festival, said Chuck Sullivan, president of the Clearwater Jazz Holiday Foundation.

    The money also will help fund the Jazz Holiday's educational programs, which include scholarships and a Classroom Concert Series.

    Vann said organizers need to raise $75,000 for their share of the Clearwater Jazz Bowl, which will be Jan. 27 at Coachman Park. She said she is working on securing corporate sponsors for the event, which is being co-sponsored by the city of Clearwater.

    The profit is good news, Vann said, considering that last year's event lost money and organizers had to dip into reserves. Two extra days of music and the threat of Hurricane Irene contributed to the loss in 1999, she said.

    This year's event, which ran Oct. 19-22 and featured trumpeter Terence Blanchard and singer Patti Austin, sold $211,000 in merchandise, beer, wine, soda and water, Vann said. Food vendors paid $27,000 in fees, she said.

    The combined $238,000, together with $289,000 in corporate donations, means the festival brought in $527,000, Vann said.

    Though the festival had budgeted $550,000 for expenses, it spent only $485,000, she said.

    "It's a good thing because we have another event that was added in," she said.

    Sponsoring the Clearwater Jazz Bowl is a way to keep the Jazz Holiday name alive throughout the year, Sullivan said.

    "It helps us continue to have a presence," he said.

    Vann said the lineup for the Jazz Bowl hasn't been finalized. She also said she doesn't know yet whether there will be an admission fee.

    Organizers estimate that attendance at the Jazz Holiday was 75,000. Vann said an exact figure is impossible to calculate because the festival is free, and people come and go throughout the day.

    "It was a very good crowd," she said.

    Festivalgoers can rate this year's event in a survey posted on the festival's Web site. Those who visit http://www.jazzholiday.com can answer questions on the lineup, food prices and the "no cooler" rule, which was a sore spot with some festivalgoers.

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