CONNIE SWINNEY • STAFF WRITER
BURNET — A live entertainment series, infusing thousands of dollars into the local economy through lodging and sales taxes, has helped businesses expand and grow jobs, officials with the Burnet Economic Development Corps. say.
The success of the Burnet Summer Concert Series prompted Burnet EDC to fund the event for the second year in a row with a $60,000 stipend, which pays for the talent as well as the booking agency and event planner, Double Eagle Entertainment.
“We’ve had huge crowds, overflow parking,” said Crista Bromley, director of administrative services. “The board decided to continue it this year because it was so successful last year.”
This year’s series started May 16 and will go through Sept. 19 with live entertainment once a month and a finale featuring the Bluegrass Festival and Fiddler’s Contest.
The upcoming concert features Cory Morrow on June 6 with gates opening at 6 p.m. and entertainment to start at 7:30 p.m. at Haley Nelson Park Amphitheater, 301 Garden Trails Drive. Other performers are Whiskey Myers on July 25 and Wade Bowen on Aug. 15.
Read more about the Burnet Summer Concert Series here.
“It brings people to town from all over who follow these different artists. They buy gas. They eat. They stay in hotels. All that translates into job creation,” Bromley said. “To accommodate more visitors coming into town, businesses hire more (staff) to handle the increased business.”
The city’s EDC also recoups some of its funding.
“We make some money back from the gate sales. We’re actually subsidizing the gate prices. We get about half back because these gate sales are half-prices,” she said. “The public pays much less than they would pay if they were going to Austin or San Antonio or Houston.”
The Summer Concert Series is sponsored by the Burnet EDC, the city of Burnet, Double Eagle Entertainment and KBEY 103.9 FM Radio Picayune.