Summerfest Concerts, Inc.
PO Box 22697
Kansas City MO 64113-0697
Web and Phone Contact
Telephone (816) 895-2920
Mission Statement
Summerfest, a professional chamber music ensemble, enriches the cultural life of Kansas City through the performances of a variety of music in a setting that fosters interaction between musicians and audience.
CEO/Executive Director Mr. Don Dagenais
Board Chair Don Dagenais
Board Chair Company Affiliation Lathrop & Gage
History and Background
Year of Incorporation 1991
Financial Summary
Revenue Expense Area Graph

Comparing revenue to expenses shows how the organizations finances fluctuate over time.

Source: IRS Form 990

Net Gain/Loss:    in 
Note: When component data are not available, the graph displays the total Revenue and/or Expense values.
Mission Statement Summerfest, a professional chamber music ensemble, enriches the cultural life of Kansas City through the performances of a variety of music in a setting that fosters interaction between musicians and audience.
Background Statement
  • Summerfest has provided Kansas City audiences with excellent performances of chamber music for  more than 25 years. The summer festival is one of the very few sources of classical music in the summer months for musicians and patrons alike.  
  • Summerfest's programming offers variety in instrumentation and musical styles with an emphasis on lesser-known pieces from all eras. Summerfest features works, input, and appearances of living composers.
  • All Summerfest concerts take place in an informal atmosphere and are followed by Meet the Musician receptions.
  • Summerfest continues to support and satisfy our loyal following, while growing awareness and increasing concert attendance.  We will continue to adapt our creative marketing and development strategies that will grow our audience and ensure Summerfest is around for the next 25 years.
  • Summerfest employs one contracted administrative staff member.
Impact Statement

Reaching roughly 1300 total audience members through our concerts and outreach events, the 2016 Summerfest Concert Season brought some exciting changes while taking care to protect the standards and staples that our loyal patrons have come to expect.

2016 brought an exciting opportunity for Summerfest’s return to the newly renovated, always charming, and consistently compelling St. Mary’s venue. Summerfest’s 26th season and St. Mary’s renaissance of commitment to the fine arts allowed us to reconnect and renew past commitments to one another. Presenting 4 of the 8 regular series concerts at St. Mary’s provided audiences, many of whom have fond memories of early Summerfest performances, with a like-minded venue which creates a multi-sensory experience for the patrons. Attendance number reflected audience interest in the new venue as Sunday concert ticket sales often equaled and in some cases exceeded Saturday ticket sales, reversing a long- standing trend.

Following our traditional format of concerts each weekend from July 9 through July 31, Saturday concerts were presented at White Recital Hall with Sunday concerts St. Mary’s. Following each performance, the Meet the Musician receptions were well attended and provided valuable opportunity and feedback for music and patrons alike.

Programming for this season continued to reflect Summerfest’s intent to make a comprehensive exploration of existing and new music for. The resulting variety of works on any given program often sheds new light on old favorites and brings to light new discoveries. Both performers and listeners found their horizons broadened and their enjoyment heightened by this distinctive programming.

  1. Continued efforts for diversifying funding. . Though we fell short of corporate funding goal totals, contacts and processes were established, some funds were raised, and a structure and understanding for future solicitations was established.
  2. Successful Board transitions occurred through the transition of Mary Zimmerman to Past President and the election of Don Dagenais as President. Efforts to recruit new board members resulted in the exciting addition of 6 new board members. Each board member brings a new and unique set of skills and experiences that will contribute to the continued growth and success of our organization.

Needs Statement
  1. Funding for our 2016 summer concert festival: "American Roots"
  2. Funding for our year-round outreach programs for children and seniors.
  3. Printing services for promotional materials and concert programs.
Service Categories
Bands & Ensembles
Areas of Service
CEO/Executive Director/Board Chair Statement

What do you do if you are a fan of classical music and it’s summertime in Kansas City? The Kansas City Symphony and all of our other fine professional classical music groups are in their “off” seasons, and of course our two fine local conservatories of music are closed for the summer. 

The answer, thankfully, is Summerfest. Summerfest is a professional chamber music organization consisting of members of the Kansas City Symphony, faculty members from our local conservatories, and other fine professional musicians who have joined together for over 25 years to produce extremely high quality, accessible chamber music performances during four weeks in midsummer. It has served a key function, filling a void in Kansas City’s cultural scene for those years. Those of us on the Board are working to ensure that it continues to do so.

Summerfest’s Board includes a committee of three artistic advisors, all professional musicians, who create the musical programming and enlist the professional musicians to produce these performances. Each summer consists of works built around a common musical “theme,” and includes compositions ranging from Baroque music all the way to contemporary works. We pride ourselves on featuring the very best of chamber music, presenting to our audiences a wide variety of musical experiences ranging from musical “comfort food” to challenging new offerings that they probably have not heard before.

This Board chair was first attracted to Summerfest many years ago for precisely the above reasons, and found among his fellow audience members others who were equally enthusiastic. Involvement as an audience member and donor eventually morphed into membership on the Board. Most of our other Board members have come to the organization the same way, for the best of reasons, i.e. a passion for the cause.

Like all organizations we face challenges in continuing to attract fresh audiences and continuing to raise sufficient funds. In the current year the Board is focused primarily on creating some intriguing new opportunities to expand our audience horizons considerably and appeal to very nontraditional classical music audiences, as well as serving our traditional customer base.

Donations to Summerfest help allow us to continue doing this good work. Thank you.

Don Dagenais

Summerfest Board President 2015-16


Roots music is a broad category of music including bluegrass, country music, gospel, old time music, jug bands, Appalachian folk, blues, Cajun and Native American music. The music is considered American either because it is native to the United States or because it developed here. It is considered "roots music" because it served as the basis of music later developed in the United States, including rock and roll, rhythm and blues, and jazz.

Concerts will take place Saturdays and Sundays in July (July 9, 10, 16, 17, 23, 24, 30, and 31).   Saturday concerts are at White Recital Hall and Sunday concerts are at Country Club Christian Church.  Following each performance, audience members will be invited to a Meet the Musician reception.
Additionally, our free outreach programs entertain and educate audiences of all ages who would not otherwise hear live classical music. Appearances are scheduled throughout the year at local schools, libraries, community centers, and senior residential centers.
Program Budget $100,000.00
Category Arts, Culture & Humanities, General/Other Music Performances Presenting
Population Served General/Unspecified, US,
Short-Term Success

One of Summerfest's programming goals is to introduce our audiences not only to staples of the chamber music repertoire, but also to seldom heard yet deserving pieces from the past four centuries. Audience members often comment that it is the unfamiliar works presented on our concerts that they enjoy the most.

Summerfest continues a long-standing relationship with the UMKC conservatory by presenting concerts to a growing audience at White Recital Hall every Saturday evening in July. The organization also successfully transitioned from St. Mary’s Episcopal Church to Country Club Christian Church for the Sunday concerts. This move allowed Summerfest to continue growing its audience base by providing a larger performance venue; the organization was playing to near-capacity audiences at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church.

Long-Term Success

We would like to see the Kansas City public more involved in attending cultural events. Our casual concert settings and Meet-the-Musician receptions allow us to introduce patrons to classical chamber music in a setting that is welcoming. Our audiences feel comfortable attending concerts and interacting with musicians because of the intimate atmosphere chamber music provides. We hope this inspires them to attend other cultural activities in Kansas City, as well.

Program Success Monitored By

Summerfest appreciates and continues to provide ample opportunity for direct audience feedback. In addition to our Meet-the-Musician receptions immediately following each summer series concert, we also hold free outreach concerts throughout the year that include an informal question and answer session.  For our 2014 concert series, we began offering suveys to garner more input and feedback from our patrons.  These surveys were modified for 2015 and provided even more valuable feedback.  We will continue to evaluate, adjust, and improve upon the surveys to garner this most important feedback and demographic information from our audiences.  These examples of both direct and informal interaction provide us with the valuable input from our audience about our season programming, marketing efforts, overall successes, and areas for improvement.

Examples of Program Success
Reaching nearly 3200 total audience members through our concerts and outreach events, 2015 was a milestone year.  
We are pleased to report a significant increase in ticket sales and concert attendance (Approximately 10%)  for our 2015 season.

Summerfest schedules multiple outreach events year-round for audiences that traditionally do not (or cannot) attend paid concert events.  We strive to reach a diverse audience through outreach to young adults and seniors, to a variety of communities/neighborhoods throughout the Kansas City metropolitan area, and to people of diverse economic backgrounds. Summerfest's outreach audiences have included members of the Jack and Jill Club (a service club for African-American children), students attending summer music camps through the UMKC, residents from assisted living centers, students from the Kansas School for the Blind, and young children in Kansas City area public libraries.

In 2015 Summerfest performed 3 important outreach events reaching nearly 2100 Kansas City area youth. Our events with Jack and Jill, Carver Elementary and Crossroads Academy allow us to bring classical music to underserved communities and provide opportunities that might not otherwise be made available to these students, families and staff.

Program Budget $10,000.00
Category Arts, Culture & Humanities, General/Other Music Instruction
Population Served Children and Youth (0 - 19 years), Aging, Elderly, Senior Citizens, Minorities
Short-Term Success 2015 outreach goals have focused on bringing our music to more diverse and underserved communities.  We have been able to achieve this goal through efforts within the Kansas City, MO School District and through the efforts of our local Summerfest musicians.  
Long-Term Success

In the past 25 years, Summerfest reached over 20,000 children and adults through outreach activities. Our intent is to share our passion for music to audiences who would not otherwise hear live classical music. We also hope to build future audiences for classical music by introducing young children and their families to our art.

Program Success Monitored By

Our organization counts the number of individuals served by our outreach program on an annual basis. We strive each year to reach audiences in all five counties of the Kansas City metropolitan area. Our audience includes people of all ages: children, their families, educators, and seniors. Partnering schools, and assisted living centers continue to request that Summerfest musicians return to provide our outreach program at their venue. With limited funding and a desire to reach a diverse audience, however, we must limit return visits to some of our partnering organizations each year.

Examples of Program Success
Children always give us an interesting perspective on our presentations at schools.  Before being enlightened by Summerfest musicians, children have thought the following:
  • Poems, like “Humpty-Dumpty” are music. We explain that poems are like Rap 'music,' which isn't 'music' at all (at least to us with pitch-instruments) because there is no pitch change.
  • Flutes are made out of nickel, aluminum, or possibly lead.
  • We could play our instruments just as well as we do now when we were their ages. Until we tell them otherwise, they think that people who play instruments are born being able to do that. We explain that we are able to play our instruments because we worked years and years at it.
CEO Comments One of our greatest challenges is related to our small board.  We continue to look to expand the board through regular discussions and contacts.  
Executive Director/CEO
Executive Director Mr. Don Dagenais
Term Start Jan 2013
Co-CEO/Executive Director
Term Start
Compensation Last Year
Former CEOs
Ms. Cynthia Duty Jan 2003 -
Lisa Schubert Hickok Nov 2010 - Nov
Paid Full-Time Staff 0
Paid Part-Time Staff 1
Volunteers 20
Paid Contractors 2
Formal Evaluations
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Frequency Semi-Annually
Plans & Policies
Organization Has a Fundraising Plan Under Development
Organization Has a Strategic Plan Under Development
Management Succession Plan Under Development
Organization Policy and Procedures Under Development
Nondiscrimination Policy No
Whistleblower Policy No
Document Destruction Policy No

Like all organizations we face challenges in continuing to attract fresh audiences and continuing to raise sufficient funds. In the current year the Board is focused primarily on creating some intriguing new opportunities to expand our audience horizons considerably and appeal to very nontraditional classical music audiences, as well as serving our traditional customer base.

Board Chair
Board Chair Don Dagenais
Company Affiliation Lathrop & Gage
Term Sept 2015 to July 2017
Board Members
Jane Carl University of Missouri at Kansas City
Don Dagenais Lathrop & Gage
Alexander East
Shannon Finney Kansas City Symphony
Kristin Hatch
Terry Pritchett Community Volunteer
Mary Redmon University of Kansas Medical Center
Don Shanks Community Volunteer
Stephanie Smith Standard Style/Baldwin Denim
Rita E. Spillman Community Volunteer
Mary Zimmerman University of Kansas
Board Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 11
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0
Board Demographics - Gender
Male 4
Female 7
Unspecified 0
Board Term Lengths 1
Board Term Limits 0
Board Meeting Attendance % 90%
Written Board Selection Criteria? Under Development
Written Conflict of Interest Policy? Under Development
Percentage Making Monetary Contributions 100%
Percentage Making In-Kind Contributions 100%
Constituency Includes Client Representation No
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 12
Standing Committees
Development / Fund Development / Fund Raising / Grant Writing / Major Gifts
Fiscal Year Start Jan 01, 2015
Fiscal Year End Dec 31, 2015
Projected Revenue $103,213
Projected Expenses $101,717
Spending Policy Income Only
Foundation Comments
  • FY 2015, 2014, 2013: Financial data reported using IRS Form 990 EZ.  
  • Foundation/corporate revenue line item may include individual contributions.
Detailed Financials
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201520142013
Program Expense$98,763$81,496$86,414
Administration Expense$0$0$0
Fundraising Expense$0$0$0
Payments to Affiliates$0$0$0
Total Revenue/Total Expenses0.911.150.92
Program Expense/Total Expenses100%100%100%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue0%0%0%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201520142013
Total Assets$13,374$22,499$10,401
Current Assets$13,274$22,399$10,301
Long-Term Liabilities$0$0$0
Current Liabilities$0$0$0
Total Net Assets$13,374$22,499$10,401
Short-Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201520142013
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities------
Long-Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201520142013
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets0%0%0%
Top Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201520142013
Top Funding Source & Dollar Amount -- -- --
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar Amount -- -- --
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar Amount -- -- --
Capital Campaign
Currently in a Capital Campaign? No
Organization Name Summerfest Concerts, Inc.
Address PO Box 22697
Kansas City, MO 641130697
Primary Phone (816) 895-2920
Contact Email
CEO/Executive Director Mr. Don Dagenais
Board Chair Don Dagenais
Board Chair Company Affiliation Lathrop & Gage
Year of Incorporation 1991