Over the last week, we’ve been looking at individual sessions from MinnPost Festival 2022, which was held virtually and in person from April 25-28. As a final wrap-up, I want to share a bit about how the Festival went and how an event like this helps fuel MinnPost’s public-service journalism.
We gear and plan the conversations of the Festival to reflect our journalism year-round: giving our audience a deeper understanding of the dynamics shaping civic and cultural life. In that regard, we think — and attendee feedback has affirmed — that the Festival was a success. And in the instance of the session with Minnesota House Speaker Melissa Hortman and Senate Maj. Leader Jeremy Miller, we even broke news when they announced a deal on the state’s unemployment fund and bonus payments to frontline workers. Recordings of all sessions are available on YouTube for you to view (re-view) whenever works for you.
In terms of attendance, 583 attendees either tuned in or attended live during the Festival, with an additional 565 on-demand views (as of this writing), pushing the total audience to over 1,148. The inaugural Festival in 2021 was fully virtual, and after that, we heard many attendees note that the events being virtual made it easier for them to participate. This year, however, we heard a number of people tell us that they’ve grown tired of virtual events, while also not feeling quite ready to attend events in-person, mostly due to concerns about COVID-19. The pandemic continues to present uncertainties around in-person events, but we hope that will ease in the months ahead. Looking forward, in addition to hosting insightful conversations with interesting guests, we’re looking at how we can experiment to make virtual and in-person attendance at our events more interactive and engaging.
The Festival is also our biggest fundraising event of the year and provides crucial support MinnPost’s nonprofit newsroom. We’re immensely grateful to our VIP Supporters for their generous backing, with additional gratitude to Festival Passholders. All of this support goes into our in-depth coverage year-round and allows us to make our reporting available to all readers free of charge! Speaking of free, we were also glad to welcome over 200 attendees who took advantage of the free option as part of our Pay What You Can pricing. This kind of open accessibility is a core value of MinnPost and is only possible thanks to philanthropic investment from donors, funders and sponsors.
We also want to thank our Festival Sponsors (all of whom you can see below!). We saw over twice as much sponsorship support raised through the Festival compared to last year, and we’re excited for the future potential growth from these and other partners in the community. (Let us know if your organization wants to support MinnPost through the Festival next year!)
And I’d be remiss if I didn’t thank the incredible members of our events committee, generous and dedicated volunteers who help guide this major event. And big thanks to our staff, who worked diligently behind-the-scenes to make everything go smoothly, as well as to Cyndy Brucato, Peter Callaghan, Harry Colbert, Jr., Solomon Gustavo, Walker Orenstein, Andy Putz, and Sheila Regan who prepared and moderated the insightful conversations with our guest speakers.
That’s a wrap on MinnPost Festival 2022. We’re excited to find new ways this event can help our audience understand the dynamics shaping our state and future, while building an even more diverse and robust community of civically-engaged Minnesotans. Cheers!
Thanks to our Festival Sponsors!
MinnPost is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that receives support from donors, members, foundations, advertisers and sponsors. Donors and sponsors that underwrite MinnPost events play no role in determining the content, featured guests or line of questioning.