Welcome, 2020 Arts and Eats participants! This space is updated continually. Check back monthly for new content and more information going into Arts and Eats 2020.
Read more below.
May 18, 2020
To our 2020 participants,
After much discussion with Arts and Eats staff and participants both past and present, we have made the difficult decision to cancel Arts and Eats 2020. We make this announcement with heavy hearts but with the firm belief that it is the best choice available to us.
…are we cancelling?
To be frank, because of this: though the tour is five months away, we have no way of knowing what the situation in Michigan will look like by that time.
Arts and Eats 2019 attracted visitors from 65 zip codes throughout Michigan and the surrounding states. While we love to help people discover all that Southwest Michigan has to offer, we are uncomfortable hosting an event that invites so much travel at this time. Due to the uncertainty brought on by the pandemic, multiple participants have already chosen to pull out of the tour, with more considering doing the same.
We do not want to provide a lackluster event with fewer participants and fewer visitors to anyone. More importantly, we want to do everything in our power to promote a safe and healthy Southwest Michigan.
… are we cancelling now?
While it is still early, we know that many of our participants begin preparing for the tour weeks or months ahead of time, investing significant amounts of time and money into getting ready for the event. Continuing to prepare for the tour also requires a significant investment on our end, both in staff hours and in the production and distribution of the maps/guides. We are choosing to cancel now to give our participants as much notice as possible and to give the tour the best options possible in the years to come.
Application fees will be refunded over the next few days. If you have not received your refund early next week, please email Kathleen.
As we move further into the year and businesses begin to reopen, please continue to send pertinent marketing information to Kathleen. Though the tour itself is cancelled, we plan to continue promotion for our 2020 participants.
The 2020 tour was to be our 10th anniversary event. Though we are disappointed to instead be facing a year without the tour, we remain grateful for the artists, artisans, farmers, and restaurateurs who make up the tour, the sponsors who make the tour possible, and the visitors who come out each year to celebrate Southwest Michigan. We thank you for your patience as we figure out our next steps, and we look forward to seeing you for Arts and Eats again in 2021.
The 2020 Arts and Eats Team