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Chamber: Green River Festival staying put

Recorder file photo
Crowds gather on the field at Greenfield Community College for the annual Green River Festival in Greenfield. The Franklin County Chamber of Commerce has shot down rumors about the long-running event, including one that had the festival moving to a new location.

Recorder file photo Crowds gather on the field at Greenfield Community College for the annual Green River Festival in Greenfield. The Franklin County Chamber of Commerce has shot down rumors about the long-running event, including one that had the festival moving to a new location.

GREENFIELD — The Green River Festival is here to stay, despite rumors to the contrary, according to organizers.

“The festival is not going away,” said Ann Hamilton, president of the Franklin County Chamber of Commerce. “We just thought we could maybe share some more of the responsibilities (with our partners).”

Hamilton said she’s heard all kinds of rumors, ranging from the chamber severing ties with the annual event, to Greenfield no longer hosting it.

They couldn’t be further from the truth, she said.

The chamber has long partnered with radio station WRSI and Signature Sounds Recording, of Northampton, to put on the annual event, which this past July celebrated its 26th iteration with 8,000 to 10,000 attending.

“Jim Olsen from Signature Sounds takes care of lining up the talent,” said Hamilton. WRSI’s role, she said, involves promoting the festival.

“WRSI plays the music of the performers, and I’m sure they’re responsible for many of the people who come to the festival from outside our area,” she continued.

“The chamber takes care of most everything else, and pays the bills,” said Hamilton.

That also includes arranging marketing on WRSI, in print and elsewhere.

Hamilton said talks with Olsen and WRSI station manager Dave Musante have just begun. At these early stages, she said, it’s not clear which responsibilities may be shared.

“We’re just wondering if some of (the chamber’s) time could be better spent on other things,” she said.

Whatever happens, said Hamilton, the chamber will still be a big part of the festival. She said Greenfield Community College has proven to be a prime location for the music and hot-air-balloon festival, and there are no plans to change venues.

When the chamber and its partners have figured out how to share responsibilities, it will be announced, said Hamilton.

David Rainville can be reached at:
drainville@recorder.com
or 413-772-0261, ext. 279

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