The vitality and energy of Historic Cedarburg’s downtown shopping district has been enhanced by well-attended annual festivals. Begun in 1973, Winter Festival and Wine & Harvest Festival have been successful in bringing thousands of visitors and residents alike to celebrate the charm and beauty of this beautiful downtown, named to the National Historic District in 1986. In 1985, Strawberry Festival was begun, while in 2005, the first Cedarburg Cycling Classic was undertaken and in July, 2008 the first annual German Festival, now known as Oktoberfest joined the list. In 2013, A Cedarburg Christmas was added to the line of up family-friendly entertainment.
Until 2006, community volunteers, Cedarburg’s retail merchants and non-profit groups, along with the Cedarburg Chamber of Commerce helped create and sustain festivals. In 2001, Festivals had grown so large, that for charitable purposes, a 501(c)3 organization was founded named Festivals of Cedarburg, Inc., with a board made up of nine volunteer members and an Executive Director. The Festival Executive Director manages the day-to-day operations, and along with a Festival Manager and a Festival Coordinator, organize and execute the festivals. The Festival board, community and retail members participate as part of a Festival Committee that meets once a month at Cedarburg City Hall. This meeting is open to the general public.
The mission of Festivals of Cedarburg, Inc. is to continue to work toward sustaining a vital and healthy business and retail community by showcasing the city’s attributes, encouraging tourism and fostering civic, cultural and educational interests. Non-profit groups in Cedarburg also benefit financially by their participation, enabling them to fund their own operations and charitable contributions through festival events. Some of those groups include the Cedarburg Garden Club, Cedarburg Cultural Center, Wisconsin Museum of Quilts and Fiber Arts, Cedarburg Lion’s, American Legion, Scout Troops, Big Brothers and Sisters of Ozaukee County, Cedar Creek Settlement Merchant's Association, Ozaukee Art Center and area Churches to name several.
Responsible for the infrastructure of each event, after expenses are paid and the Festivals' financial cushion is assured, any profits made by Festivals are given back into the community via enhanced festival events and a Grant Program. Grant applications are received annually and funds for those grants are disseminated yearly. Please see the list below for some of the receipts of grants from Festivals of Cedarburg. Click here for more information about our grant program.
A few of the past grants awarded:
American Red Cross
Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Ozaukee County
Cedarburg Artist's Guild
Cedarburg Civic Band
Cedarburg Cultural Center
Cedarburg First Responders
Cedarburg Merchants Organization
Cedarburg Parks & Recreation
Cedarburg Police Department K-9 Unit
Cedar Creek Riverwalk Project
Cedar Creek Settlement Merchant's Association
Cedarburg Tourism, Promotional & Development Committee (TP&D)
Wisconsin Museum of Quilts and Fiber Arts
...and many more