Harrisburg's Kipona festival to split between Riverfront Park and City Island

Written by Ben Allen, General Assignment Reporter | Jul 25, 2014 1:32 PM

Photo by Ben Allen/witf

Harrisburg Mayor Eric Papenfuse says he expects a full slate of vendors at the Kipona festival, despite the shift.

(Harrisburg) -- The City of Harrisburg's Kipona arts and music festival isn't quite shifting all the way to City Island on Labor Day weekend, as was reported earlier.

Instead, Mayor Eric Papenfuse says many vendors will set up in Riverfront Park, while three stages and other attractions are headed to the Island.

A smaller portion of Front Street will also be closed for the festival.

After condemning the media for its reports, Mayor Papenfuse says the changes are meant to save money.

"There is a desire to scale this back, to get a sense of the cost and the spending, to not have it spiral out of control. These festivals, in the past, have gone over a hundred thousand dollars."

Harrisburg will spend $37,500 on this year's Kipona, plus any labor costs.

"Everything that we've done in the past, we're really still doing it. We are just sort of re-organizing where. And I think one of the lead stories should be that parking is free."

Mayor Papenfuse says past administrations failed to account for the costs of festivals like Kipona in the city's budget, and he'll change that next year.

Sunday, August 31st features a concert in the Harrisburg City Islanders soccer stadium, followed by fireworks at dusk.

During the festival, parking will be free on City Island and in the River Street Garage on 2nd Street (until 10 pm on Saturday).

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