Partnership with PACT
Early Years of SandFest
In the early years of SandFest, team member Dee McElroy recognized that if the event was to grow, it needed to be under a the umbrella of a nonprofit organization. She brought the idea to the Port Aransas Community Theatre board of directors; she suggested that they conduct Texas SandFest business under the 501(c)(3) umbrella of the theatre and make it a fundraiser for the theatre. PACT would receive all profits for each year’s event.
It was decided to always schedule the festival in a shoulder tourist season, meaning when very few tourists were in town. SandFest dates would be selected by the predicted tide charts, using the lowest tides as the scheduled dates. As the event progressed, it brought thousands of people to the island — filling rooms and providing business for restaurants, shops, and local merchants.
2006 - SandFest Gets Nonprofit Status
Early in 2006, Dee approached the PACT board with the request to release the festival to stand alone as a nonprofit group. PACT had just built its new theatre after a number of years of fundraising. The theatre board of directors agreed, with the understanding that their group could always be a partner in the work of the event.
Nowadays, Texas SandFest continues to support the community and ensures that the people of Port Aransas benefit from the multitude of nonprofits that contribute to this incredible island.