Air Traffic Control (ATC) is committed to connecting musicians with opportunities to help the greater community. Understanding that artists can serve as the driving force for awareness initiatives in the wake of disasters, ATC has studied the role of artists in disaster response for the past decade. The study revealed three clear stages of the process, which in turn led to the creation of a threefold plan for optimizing disaster response.
First, ATC notifies artists in its network within 24 hours of a disaster with suggestions for strategic action, prepared email statements, and posts for social media. The second stage involves the “When Disaster Strikes” Fund, which ATC recently created in conjunction with the Center for Disaster Philanthropy. Donations from artists and their fans go directly to the fund, which then strategically directs them to response units and rebuilding efforts.
During the third stage, ATC regularly updates artists about how their money and their fans’ donations have helped the cause. The updates include prepared statements that artists can redirect to their fans.
The Treasure Island Music Festival maintains a dedication to reducing its carbon footprint. Since the festival’s inception, about three-quarters of the waste produced has avoided the landfill due to composting and recycling initiatives. In 2013, the festival utilized biodiesel generators that significantly reduced emissions of carbon monoxide and hydrocarbons. Organizers are encouraging attendees to walk, use public transportation, or bike to the next event in October 2014. Attendees can take a bus to the island from downtown San Francisco. Individuals who bike to the festival can even “check” their bikes with a valet.
In order to reduce waste caused by disposable cups, the Treasure Island Music Festival will fill personal water bottles with fresh, cold water for only a dollar. Alternatively, attendees can purchase stainless steel reusable bottles and receive free refills.
Last year, all concession stands used compostable materials and recycled napkins. In addition, all printed material associated with the festival was published on recycled paper. Festival organizers look forward to furthering their commitment to sustainability with new initiatives in the years to come.
The Union Station bus depot in Washington, DC, will soon open two new pavilions for the convenience of travelers. One of the pavilions will sell drinks, snacks, and reading materials, while the other will provide tourist information. Both feature a bright yellow face encrusted with a series of lines and dots, which are actually Morse code for lyrics from a Death Cab for Cutie Song, “Soul Meets Body.” A representative of the architecture firm who designed the yellow surfaces stated that the lyrics represent perfectly the feelings of impermanence and transience that individuals often associate with bus stations.
This honor makes Death Cab for Cutie a permanent part of Union Station and Washington, DC. Ben Gibbard, the group’s guitarist and lead singer, also prominently featured the city in the song “The District Sleeps Alone Tonight,” a single released through Gibbard’s acclaimed side project, The Postal Service.
The Stern Grove Festival is one of the oldest admission-free events in the United States. Since 1938, the event has featured performing artists through series at Sigmund Stern Grove in San Francisco. Since the Stern Grove Festival earns no revenue from ticket sales, it relies on the generosity of attendees to cover the costs of the concerts and outreach programs featured each year. While the organization that presents the event accepts general donations, it has also created a unique system through which individuals can directly donate to the segments of the festival that they wish to support.
The Local Artist Fund helps to cover artist fees and production expenses for performers based in and around San Francisco. The Youth Arts Fund provides materials and educational initiatives that bring art to more than 3,000 children each summer. The Classical Fund enables renowned classical performers to be accessible to all. The fund covers artist fees and associated expenses, while the Festival Fund goes toward the operating costs that keep the festival running smoothly each year.
For individuals who want to provide hands-on support, the event heavily relies on the generosity of volunteers.