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Festivals and Events can stimulate tourism and economic development while creating community pride in what makes a place unique and special. The Festival and Event Management course provides education for event organizers, volunteers and staff. The course offers essential information and practical organizational tools for leading events while considering ways to nurture the community spirit that festivals and events can create. The program offers essential management education, an optional certificate of completion, and "Timely Topics" - all convenient and online for busy staff and volunteers.

Spring 2016: Festival and Event Management Online

Register now

Join the U of M Tourism Center in spring 2016 for our online Festival and Events Management course and two Timely Topics. The six-week course offers narrated presentations, videos, practical advice from experts, essential readings, emerging research and best practice examples. From site planning to financial planning and marketing to media, this course provides what managers, staff and volunteers need to create, sustain or enhance a festival or event.

Two exciting Timely Topics complete the six-week course. The first is Events on Farm (April 4 - 8, 2016). The second is a repeat of our popular fall 2015 topic - Volunteer Management (April 11 - 15, 2015).

For the spring 2016 course, we offer the following special: Register by February 1, 2016, and you can invite another staff person from the same event or festival to take the course with you! Please contact Jodie Kaden ( or 612-624-7165) with questions.

Participants in our spring course can apply to obtain the Certificate of Completion, by submitting a critical analysis paper that applies course content to a festival or event of their choice. Detailed information about the critical analysis can be found here: Certificate Requirements (PDF).


Festival and Event Management Online (February 22 - April 1, 2016)
The spring, 6-week online offering begins on February 22 and runs through April 1, 2016.
Cost: Before February 1: $499 (Save $100 for early registration!)
After February 1, the 6-week offering is $599.
The Timely Topic "Events on Farm" is included in the price
Register for Festival and Event Management Online

Spring 2016 Timely Topics:

Events on Farm(April 4 - 8, 2016). The farm-to-table movement has brought about a range of events focused on local foods and farms, including on-farm dinners, farm tours, and special meals which feature local foods. In this timely topic, learn from case studies about the particular challenges of organizing events on-farm and how event organizers can best work with farmers. This topic will be of interest to both farmer operators and event managers alike. The course will be taught by Ryan Pesch, an Extension Educator at the Center for Community Vitality and a vegetable operator in Minnesota.
Cost: Early Registration: $99 (Save $50 if you register by March 14, 2016)
After March 14, the price will be $149.
(Note: This timely topic is included in the full class registration fee).
Register for Events on Farm

Volunteer Management (April 11 - 15, 2016). Students will explore ways to involve new people and new perspectives as they work with volunteers. This involves valuing diversity (engaging, seeking out and honoring diverse perspectives and ideas), motivating others (encouraging others by engaging individual strengths and involving them in meaningful ways), and influence (tactics to persuade others to reach shared goals). The course will be taught by Jody Horntvedt, a Leadership and Civic Engagement Educator at the University of Minnesota Extension Center for Community Vitality.
Cost: Early Registration: $99 (Save $50 if you register by March 21, 2016)
After March 21, the price will be $149
Register for Volunteer Management

What people are saying

"Thank you for your time in offering this course. As the first online course that I've taken, I thoroughly enjoyed the content and learned a lot from it (and from other participants)!"

"I want you to know that as a long time event planner I learned to consolidate all of my knowledge into a much clearer method for putting together events. Also, employment in the area of festivals and larger events is something I am pursuing with a lot of confidence from the classes I have taken."

"I have over 30+ years of government experience and was truly amazed at the wealth of information this course provided. I would recommend it to anyone."

"Great. Good class. Good info. I liked it was being offered online."

"Excellent, comprehensive. I have 10 years of life experience to let me work where I am today and this class was useful. There is wealth of information for everyone."

About Festival &
Event Management

This comprehensive program provides event staff, festival organizers, and volunteers with the essential knowledge and organizational tools to successfully operate and sustain events as well as the community spirit associated with them.


Tourism Center
University of Minnesota
448 Coffey Hall
St. Paul, MN 55108-6005
Phone: 612-624-4947
Fax: 612-624-4264

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