By Cecilia Chan
When it comes to Glendale’s signature festivals, the public wants to see more entertainment, games, craft vendors and health food options.
Results of an online survey taken Jan. 13-Feb. 3 by visitors, residents, merchants and vendors are in and is scheduled to go before the Parks and Recreation Advisory Board on March 8. The board was to discuss this last week but canceled the meeting because it lacked a quorum.
The city sought public input because it is looking at possibly creating or bringing back certain types of community events and working with partners and businesses in the community to create new or enhance current events.
The city currently stages 12 days of festivals in the downtown area, including the Glendale Glitters Spectacular in November, the Glitter & Glow Block Party and the Chocolate Affaire, which have all been in running for 20-plus years, with an annual attendance of 310,000 people.
According to the city, 101 people responded to the survey, 87 were from Glendale and three were from out of state. Fifteen special events vendors and 35 Glendale-based business owners and 10 non-Glendale business owners also responded.
In the survey, 69 percent of resident responders said they would return to another Glendale event because they are family friendly and filled with energy and excitement. What they did not like about the events included too crowded, lack hometown feel and poor quality among vendors.
Among vendors, they liked the city’s events because they are well-run and have excellent attendance. Some local vendors, however, stated they were made to feel they were invading the area of out-of-town vendors.
Other improvements survey participants wanted to see for the city’s special events included more accessible parking, a focus on local businesses with fewer out-of-state vendors, ability to walk with alcohol and better shuttle service. They also wanted to see more emphasis on showcasing the city’s history, more restrooms and making things more affordable.
City staff next will contact vendors interested in follow-up contact, do an internal evaluation of the special events, hold strategic meetings to define mission, goals and procedures ad present a proposed action plan for review and discussion in the coming months.