Havre Daily News
This year's Great Northern Fair will be getting a boost from a Missoula-based marketing and event production company.
FunNBiz.com will help the Great Northern Fair Board wrangle local and corporate sponsors for the rodeo, petting zoo and free stage acts, and help with marketing and advertising.
Fair manager Tim Solomon said he had been trying to find a local firm, but local companies lacked experience in handling county fairs.
This year is the first time the fair board will work with a promotion company.
“We didn't have expertise or time. This way we hire someone with experience,” Solomon said.
Madeline Heitzman, partner in FunNBiz.com, said the company is putting together introduction letters to send to businesses.
Solomon said he hopes to have letters sent out to businesses by the end of next month.
FunNbiz will receive 10 percent to 20 percent of the profits, depending on the amount raised.
“If we're not successful, the fair doesn't have to pay,” Heitzman said.
Solomon said the goal is to break even on the cost of the fair or possibly do a little better. Any extra money will be put into improvements of the fairgrounds.
The fair came in about $7,000 short last year, which was covered by county tax dollars, Solomon said.
The fair board has close to the same budget as last year. Solomon said the total amount needed for the 2006 Great Northern Fair will depend on what acts are hired.
Tickets to fair events like the rodeo and demolition derby will be available through www.FunNbiz.com. The fair office will continue selling tickets.
Royal West Amusements Inc., the parent company of FunNBiz.com, is returning to run the carnival for the Great Northern Fair after about a decade hiatus. Royal West left the fair when its days conflicted with those of the larger Western Montana Fair. Now that the time of the Great Northern Fair has changed to the third week in July, Royal West Amusements Inc. can run both fairs.