I'm sorry, but the event at DCA really pales in comparison to the Epcot event. The one at DCA caters to the rich (like most things at DLR of late), yet the Epcot event is more accessible, has more variety, and is more wallet-friendly.
Al Lutz has an interesting perspective on the cancellation. As much as I hate to, I think he is probably right. Compared to hard ticketed events F&W makes small change in profits. I suspect that if they ever reincarnate F&W it will be a limited hard ticket event.
I sent a letter to George Kalogridis (see earlier post). I received a phone call the next day from someone in his office. The CM said that George had seen my letter and wanted me to know he appreciated my comments. No mention that they would consider any kind of event in place of F&W or even that they would commit to 2013.
I have to add that I was really impressed by the call. At most I expected a form letter. I am also impressed with the Post Office. It was less than 24 hours from the time I mailed the letter to the phone call!
Leonard "Growing old is mandatory. Growing up is optional. I REFUSE!"
Good ol' Al Lutz on the subject in his newest update:
Also at DCA, the sudden decision to cancel the Food & Wine event for at least the next two years took many folks by surprise. After several years of increasing the events scope with minimal increases in profits, the nail in the coffin for Food & Wine was none other than this year’s Halloween trick or treat parties. That only proved to TDA that up-sell events can be held at the parks that actually rake in huge profits, instead of merely scrape by after huge investment and resources are poured into it like Food & Wine had been doing. While the Food & Wine team had been creating two different logistical plans for the varying stages of construction the park would be in during the spring of 2011 and 2012 that could have proved workable, it was an easy excuse to use to cancel the event due to “construction”.
There’s absolutely no guarantee, and no current plan, to bring the Food & Wine festival back in 2013. What TDA will be looking at before they make that decision is how DCA performs after its Billion dollar makeover is completed in 2012. Food & Wine at DCA was copied from Epcot earlier in the decade as part of the push to drive higher attendance to the under-performing park. Unlike the Epcot version however, the DCA festival didn’t drive tourists to head down to stay at local hotels and hit up the festival. Instead the DCA version mainly drove attendance gains each year from the growing pool of Annual Passholders who had already purchased their park tickets. Since most of the food and beverage offerings were sold at barely above cost after all the festival overhead and labor was factored in, the profits from the DCA version were a weak fraction of what Disney World enjoys when the much larger and more elaborate Epcot version rolls out each year.
So it sounds like that at least part of the reason the Festival was canceled for the next few years was so that the economy could recover before continuing with it. With any luck, it will, and Disney will continue with the Festival in 2013.