Already resurrected from the dead as a pub crawl, Grand Old Day could now be on the verge of coming back in its entirety.
Last week, the Grand Avenue Business Association stunned St. Paulites with news that it had canceled plans to host the city's annual Grand Old Day.
The gut punch was met resolve by Ashley LeMay and Andy Rodriguez, who organized a pub crawl dubbed "Grand Old Day Anyway" with a goal of simply giving people – and businesses on Grand Avenue – a slice of what they'd miss without the annual tradition.
Now, LeMay and Rodriguez are hoping a last-minute fundraiser can generate enough money to help Grand Old Day Anyway rival festivities typically associated with Grand Old Day.
Their goal is to raise $100,000 and then work with Grand Avenue Business Association
"With that figure, we would be able to have a full-scale event," LeMay and Rodriguez told Bring Me The News on Wednesday morning. "Funds will cover police/security, the event organizer, sanitation, set-up, tear-down, clean up, and satellite toilets."
They're confident while remaining cautiously optimistic since "the clock is ticking."
According to the Star Tribune, the money needs to be raised by Monday, the deadline for the contractor who sets up Grand Old Day.
As of 10 a.m. Wednesday, the GoFundMe campaign had raised $3,085, but word about the fundraiser is just beginning to reach public eyes and ears.
If they don't reach their goal of $100,000, they plan to "work with the small businesses and crowd-funders to determine how best to allocate the funds raised." Regardless of what happens, at a minimum the June 2 pub crawl will go ahead.
Tickets for the pub crawl are $25 and it gets you a T-shirt, a free Summit beer, map of participating bars and unlimited $4 Summit taps at all participating pubs.
The nonprofit that runs Grand Old Day – a tradition that dates back 45 years – canceled this year's plans to "keep the event fresh for 2020," adding that it would be seeking community input "to create an event that reflects the traditions and interests of the businesses and neighbors who call Grand Avenue home."
Grand Old Day has historically been a booming day for businesses on Grand Ave., so Grand Old Day Anyway will at the very least be a band-aid for those that rely on the annual event.