It costs money to run a festival. And the bigger it gets, the more it costs. This year, the organizers of the Oak Street Po-Boy Festival on Oct. 22 will require a $5 wristband to buy food from the vendors.
"We wanted to keep it as economical as possible," said Min Yang, co-president of the neighborhood organization that produces the popular festival. "We just have to find a way to support the festival without drastically increasing the vendor fees."
Yang noted there is no limit to the number of po-boys a person could buy with a single wristband. One person with a wristband could buy food for a group or whole family.
"I think this is an innovation that we're starting," Yang said.
Wristbands are not required to purchase drinks. Festival goers can also enter an Oak Street restaurant and buy food as normal.
The organizers never considered charging admission to the festival, which also has four stages of music.
"We can't charge admission and keep it a neighborhood festival," Yang said.
Vendors can sell discounted wristbands in advance of the festival. The businesses selling wristbands will be posted later this week on www.poboyfest.com.
A portion of wristband sales will benefit the organization Son of a Saint. "We're is trying to find a way to support and improve the festival over time," Yang said.