Daylesford’s ChillOut Festival has posted a financial loss for the last financial year, with bad weather blamed for driving down numbers at this year’s event.

The festival declared the loss at the Annual General Meeting on August 17 and also elected a new president, Michael Brady, who will take over from Bendigo-based Adam Wright.

“Despite low turnout at this year’s festival due to the unprecedented wet weather, we’ve managed to restrict our financial loss for the year to just under $6000,” Brady said in a statement.

“Obviously any loss depletes our financial resources, but we are in a workable position to take the festival forward next year, and we know the community will rally to support us next year.”

The 2010 festival weekend was one of the wettest ChillOuts yet, with heavy rain and hailstorms across Victoria, and Melbourne experiencing flash flooding.

It costs around $300,000 to run ChillOut year-to-year and organisers say the 2011 festival success is important to shore up the event’s future financial stability.

“We have grown enormously in recent years and we are planning for the sustainability of the festival over the long term,” Brady said.

“We’ve listened to the feedback we received from this year’s event and we’re absolutely committed to making our event the best it can be.”

Wright, who did not seek re-election, welcomed Brady’s appointment.

“Being president of ChillOut has been a tremendous experience, but the time has come for me to focus on other commitments,” Wright said. “Michael is a passionate and committed supporter of ChillOut and a member of our committee for many years.”

ChillOut media spokesman Paul Kidd told Southern Star Observer the financial loss of $5915.97 was unlikely to hit the hip pocket of festival-goers.

“We are trying to build our cash reserves over time … but ticket prices will more or less be kept the same.”

Kidd said feedback from festival-goers, however, is likely to change options for ticket-buyers so those who purchase Carnival Day tickets in advance will save money.

Planning is now underway for the 2011 festival to be held from March 11 – 14.

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