LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The COVID-19 pandemic has had a big financial impact on Waterfront Park.
The Waterfront Development Corporation is reporting a $259,000 operating loss. Several of the park's major summer events, including the Forecastle music festival, have been canceled due to concerns about crowds gathering and spreading the virus.
Radio station 91.9 WFPK on Wednesday announced the cancellation of is popular Waterfront Wednesday concert season. A large fundraising dinner scheduled to take place on the Big Four Bridge has also been canceled.
Waterfront Park relies heavily on revenue from events and donations from the community. With so many key events scrapped, the park has taken a big financial hit.
If it weren't for the pandemic, the park was on track to make and possibly beat its budget for 2020, according to Deborah Bilitski, the president/executive director of the Waterfront Development Corporation. Cash reserves will be used to make up for the shortfall.
"Although we are in a shortfall situation, I still feel like we are in a pretty good shortfall situation, as far as that goes, and that with some luck we'll see a recovery of events in 2021," Bilitski said during the corporation's board meeting Thursday afternoon.
In some good news for the park, a new grab-and-go cafe is slated to open this summer in the old Doc's Cantina/Tumbleweed building. Bilitski said robotic frozen yogurt machines will also be installed this summer inside the same waterfront building, which has stood vacant for years.
- Forecastle Festival 2020 canceled in latest fallout from COVID-19 pandemic
- 2020 WFPK Waterfront Wednesday concert series canceled as a result of COVID-19
- Dinner on the Big Four Bridge to help Waterfront Park with maintenance and operating costs
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