Accommodations Tax Advisory Board gives the Country Thunder music festival a thumbs down

Country Thunder on Facebook

Country Thunder, and large country music festival, asked for $200,000, almost a third of the $750,000 available, from the City of Myrtle Beach's Accommodations Tax fund.  It was not recommended by the Advisory Board to grant that request.

Organizations given money from the tax fund are typically non-profit, according to a report by the Sun News.  Country Thunder is for-profit, thus it's assumed that there are other funding sources available to make it happen.  But if there isn't, the area stands to lose a three to four-day event typically bringing in 85,000 to 100,000 visitors.  The final call will be up to the City Council. 

Currently held in Wisconsin and Arizona, the country music festival boasts some big name performers such as Dierks Bentley, Big & Rich, and Blake Shelton. There has been talk of moving the Academy of Country Music Awards to the Arizona festival for 2012, theoretically upping the status of it in its various locations. 

When The Sun News tossed the topic out on Facebook for public comment the reviews were mixed.  For every, "Yes, it takes money to make money, there is a large country music base in our region and surrounding states, I would recommend late spring or early fall, don't need events like this in the summertime" there is a "No, not if it's with my tax dollars."  You can check all comments here.

You can find out more about the Country Thunder music festival here. They are on Facebook, as well. You can also see a list of which other organizations asked for a portion of the Accommodations Tax pie and what the Advisory Board's recommendations were here.

So what do you think?  Potential good use of tax dollars or bad idea?

Filed in