Lilac Festival 2022 wraps up

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — The 2022 Lilac Festival has come to an end. Organizers say they couldn’t have asked for a better come-back year.

On day one of the festival we were promised fully bloomed lilacs and that’s what we got! We caught up with one of the vendors, Chick’n Out, and owner Adam Bierton says it was more than a success.

"We are honored to be a part of the Lilac Festival, especially the kick-off after the pandemic. The turnout has been tremendous. The weather has been tremendous literally 11 straight days of awesomeness," Bierton said.

Jeff Springut, one of the event organizers says everything went according to plan this year, including the fully bloomed lilacs. The schedule this year was spread across three separate weekends—not the typical 10 days straight. Springut says that it worked well, but is not sure what next season will bring. He says staffing was a real challenge.

The decision to have the festival spread out across three weekends was a big hit.

"I actually love it, I think they should keep doing it more, it gives more opportunity and less of so many people at once and running out, it’s nice to have it spread out," Mia Wilson said.

Natalie Keller, another event goer also agreed.

"That’s honestly the best thing that’s happened because I was like I want to go to the lilac festival but when it’s all close together, it’s harder."

That wasn’t the only fan favorite. Alongside the view of the flowers, people were excited about the sights and sounds on stage. This year we heard a lot of local bands.

"So happy about that, I’m all about the local support, we’ve had some great bands, people were dancing and everyone has been so friendly I’m so glad it has been so chill," Keller added.

"It’s funny because people are out of work and a lot of people don’t want to work. I’m not sure what the answer is but we heard it from a lot of vendors that staffing was a big issue," Springut told us.

"Dealing with coolers breaking down, short-staffed on people, and getting food here on a consistent basis when we open up the line just doesn’t stop till 8:00 p.m., 8:30 p.m.," Bierton said.

Minus a few hurdles, the collection of vibrant purple lilacs really took center stage. Springut says this festival really lives up to its title of "The largest event of its kind in North America." Some folks traveled from as far as Ireland for the show.

"Had some friends from Queens, New York who come every year, and they brought friends from France who have never been to Rochester before. They had wide-open eyes. I’m not sure if they knew about lilacs, but they got a great whiff of them," Springut said with a smile.

Plans for next year will commence as soon as the last of the event is taken down. Next on the agenda is Party In The Park in June.