2022 Award of Merit: Belmont
Moonlight on Main
2022 NC Main Street Award: Promotion
Best Downtown Special Event or Event Series
Belmont Main Street Program
Downtown Belmont Development Association
City of Belmont
Belmont Tourism Development Authority
Gaston County Tourism
Elements of Empowerment
Gaston County Arts Guild
Watch The Award Video
During three consecutive weekends in October and November 2021, Moonlight on Main took place in Downtown Belmont. This event series resulted from the partnership of numerous organizations, including the Belmont Main Street Program, Downtown Belmont Development Association, the City of Belmont, Belmont Tourism Development Authority, Gaston County Tourism, Elements of Empowerment, and the Gaston County Arts Guild.
The $200,000 event centered on the Museum of the Moon international art exhibit created by United Kingdom artist Luke Jerram. This exhibit is a 23-foot inflatable globe covered with detailed NASA imagery of the lunar surface, creating a nearly exact replica of the moon. The exhibit was located in Stowe Park, in downtown Belmont.
A free opening night art exhibition and downtown art tour ushered in Moonlight on Main with original artworks displayed and artists discussing their works. A self-guided, outdoor walking tour of 20 artworks was projected in lights. Other activities included Boofest, Halloween Bar Crawl, Howl at the Moon for Furry Friends event, and live music, including a Pink Floyd experience with video projection and laser light show.
The three-weekend event attracted 21,000 visitors, many having never been to Belmont before. More than $1.5 million in retail sales and hotel stays by visitors from as far north as Vermont and as far south as Florida resulted from this event series. This remarkable economic impact also included $35,000 in profit for the Downtown Belmont Development Association, which will enable the organization to host additional popular events.
Moonlight on Main was also recognized by the North Carolina Association of Festivals & Events with awards for Best Brochure, Best Event Photo and Best Overall Event.