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California Roots Festival generates $25.7 million and creates hundreds of jobs per year

MONTEREY CA. - The California Roots Festival on the Monterey Fairgrounds opened its doors this afternoon. The atmosphere was electric with vendors like Pricilla Jones for MMM Churros so excited for the business she is going to get. 

“The economic impact is great,” Jones said. “All of the money that the vendors that are local make come right back into the community.” 

California Roots owner and producer, Dan Sheehan said that most of the festival goers are not local to the city and are contributing to the economy by supporting businesses in the festival, and also in town. 

“A lot of our ticket buyers come from outside of the market,” Sheehan said. “I think our last count was 85% of ticket buyers are coming from outside the market. They’re going to hotels, they’re spending their money with all of the food vendors. We have a lot of local food vendors. We hire a lot of local staff. And so we are huge in supporting local. And bringing Economic impact to Monterey and Monterey County.” 

Dan also told me that this festival brings about 10,000 people per day, which sending them to local businesses. 

“And I think with 10,000 people coming a day and spending money here,” Sheehan said. “Not just on-site, but all around I think it’s a huge thing and we’re excited to keep doing this.”

Local and festival attendees like Carlee Agar who attended Thursday felt that the money coming into the community is beneficial, and doesn’t feel like anything is too overpriced. 

“But economically definitely with the vendors out here,” Agar said. “I think the prices are fair, the food prices are fair. I think it’s a fairly beneficial experience.” 

Local businesses, just like Yesenia Castillas’ booth What's Poppin Popcorn, were also excited to see the support from the community economically while attending California Roots. 

“We absolutely love it. Honestly, this is one of the events we look forward to all year long,” Castiallas said. “And it’s like the Super Bowl for Monterey County. It really brings us businesses a really happy feeling as we feel it is one of the most successful events in the area.” 

Also, according to a report by Beacon Economics and California Roots, in 2022 total state-wide economic impacts reached $34.2 million, supporting 329 jobs and generating $15.7 million in labor income. Much of the impacts came from attendee spending with $25.7 million in economic output, and 264 jobs supported. 

You can come to support your local businesses this Memorial Day weekend by attending the California Roots Festival all weekend. 

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Lindsey Selzer


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