COMMUNITY groups and businesses will take an increasingly active role in entertainment surrounding the Port Fairy Folk Festival.
A report to Moyne Shire Council highlighted that the council would lead a traders' working group to "concentrate solely on activating the street for the festival".
Entertainment could include busker competitions, street performers, stalls, children's spaces as well as outdoor dining areas, the report states.
Passing on responsibility for the "village program" would keep the festival focused on the main entertainment at Southcombe Park, Fiddler's Green and Reardon Theatre.
Festival committee vice president Bernie Waixel said the festival was pleased to have strengthened its relationship with the council, after it sought help following a drop in ticket sales.
"Our volunteers and resources are stretched and we can't do justice to that village program," he said.
"We are very pleased the council wants to help us and get involved with facilitating discussions with traders."
Port Fairy Community House has already heeded an offer to run stalls at Railways Place and Fisherman's Walk during the festival next March.
The community group's stalls co-ordinator Pam McGoldrick said her committee was thrilled to be part of the festival.
"For years we have been trying to find a way to be part of the festival," Mrs McGoldrick said.
"Running a festival that size is a huge job and the community needs to get behind it and help take pressure off the festival committee."
Mrs McGoldrick said plans were in place to double the number of stalls compared to last year, with a focus on stalls to showcase local produce.
A stage usually operates on Railway Place during the folk festival but that will be removed in 2020. Instead, street performers and buskers will roam the area near the stalls.
Meanwhile, Port Fairy traders hit back at claims by councillor Colin Ryan at September's council meeting that none of the town's traders advertised in the festival's program.
If the Shoe Fits and Isabella's business owner Fiona Kavanagh said she was not approached for advertising, while festival committee president John Young said communication of opportunities with local businesses would improve.
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