In an era of tightened budgets, one Virginia city decided to dig into its pockets for a Civil War historical event.
Manassas city council voted in favor of transferring $409,000 from its capital reserve fund to pay for its Sesquicentennial celebration, InsideNova reported. The event, which will run from July 21-24, features a variety of Civil War-themed events. Reenactments of the Battle of Manassas, the Lincoln-Douglas debates, and performance of 1860's-era music are all on the schedule.
One council member, Marc Aveni, thought the hefty investment was too much. He pointed out that the city would be paying more in overtime for the Civil War event than the city was spending on foot patrols in Georgetown South, the site of recent violent crimes.
But the rest of the council members were unified in their support for the spending measure.
"It seems like a lot of money," said Council member Sheryl Bass, according to InsideNova. "But it's an investment in our community."
The city hope the four-day celebration will draw as many as 150,000 visitors, along with their tourist dollars.