After a public outcry, the province has come through with $75,000 for the event.
“As we’ve said all along, we value the contribution of the Beaches Jazz Festival and have been a proud partner in their success over the years by providing funding through our various programs.”
-Michael Chan, Ontario’s minister of Tourism, Culture, and Sport, confirming that the popular east-end festival will be receiving provincial funding after all. Organizers feared the event would have to be scaled back after an application made to the Celebrate Ontario fund for financial support was rejected—provincial money has traditionally taken care of 20 per cent of the festival’s total budget. But $75,000 will now be coming to the event from the Ontario Music Fund: “This support will help the festival consolidate their performance stages and showcase a greater diversity of musicians and performers,” Chan said.
Critics had questioned why it was that a free, annual festival that’s been delighting the east end for 25 years had been denied funding, when slightly less free and established events like Drake’s OVO Fest had received a good deal of cash (in the case of OVO, $300,000′s worth).