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By Karen Hendricks, PR/Marketing Director

The Festival’s new Executive Director, Beth Kirby, has spent the majority of her career working in the non-profit sector, primarily because “it’s a joy to work with people, especially people who are passionate about what they are doing.”

However, she still wasn’t quite prepared for the incredible buzz and electricity she felt running through the town of Gettysburg and created by the non-profit Gettysburg Festival during June of 2010.  Brand new to the community, she was thrilled to meet people involved in various Festival events, and was caught up in their excitement so much so that, as she began settling into the community, she also began anticipating the 2011 Gettysburg Festival.

“Last June, 2011, I took it all in, and I enjoyed the art scene, live music and outdoor venues,” said Kirby.  “All of the events, and all of the people involved in the events, were overwhelmingly positive with great things to say about the Festival.  Everyone was unified in their dedication to the organization’s mission.”

That experience laid a great groundwork for what was to follow this fall – the naming of Kirby as the Festival’s new Executive Director.

“I see the Festival as a product of great value, offering something of unique value—the arts—to the community as well as our visitors.  The challenge with any non-profit is to retain and even gain support while in a down economy.  Without state and federal funding, the Gettysburg Festival is not unlike other arts organizations who now are laying the groundwork of sponsorship and support in order to continue offering artistic events of quality. Personally, I feel that our Friends of the Festival membership is a vital and exciting form of support, offering people the chance to be a part of something they love and believe in.  The Festival also gives volunteers the amazing opportunity to be a part of the Festival and energize the town through the arts.”

As the Festival gears up for its banner 5th Annual Gettysburg Festival, June 8-17, 2012, Kirby looks forward to forging new friendships and partnerships.  “I’m not going to be behind my desk every day,” she explained.  “I’m going to be out in the community, meeting people and getting involved.”  Welcome, Beth Kirby.