As a veteran of the New Belgium Clips Festival, I can say with certainty that it gets better and better every year. Aside from the good eats and drinks, the main attraction for me is the surprising mixture of inspirational, comical, and informative short films that are shown under the stars in one of Charleston’s most beautiful locations, Marion Square. I think the whole festival is very well organized for its young age and accomplishes a lot in just a couple of hours. Not only do the films speak to the audience, but New Belgium also sponsors raffle giveaways, local food vendors, and even brings in the Charleston Green Fair to keep the festival as environmentally friendly as possible. It was a great opportunity to forget you were in the middle of a busy city – the ability to just stretch out in the grass and enjoy good food, good people, and good films is a rare something that I look forward to every year.
In our class discussion on economics, we talked about ticket scaling and how it affects the demand for the event. Based on observations at the Clips Festival, it is a smart move on their part to forgo an overall admission charge for the festival. It was obvious that many audience members – who weren’t broke, underage college students like myself – were much more willing to indulge and spend their money on the delicious food and craft beers provided by New Belgium. This allows them to both raise awareness of their relatively new brewing company as well as raise a significant amount of funds in support of a local non-profit, Charleston Moves. I would recommend this event to anyone and everyone as one of my favorite things to do in Charleston. It’s a fun twist on the Farmer’s Market that happens every Saturday afternoon in Marion Square, and a must-see for both locals and visitors.