"We've had a good run, and no one is hanging their head over it."
A 23-year tradition has come to and end.
The McPherson Scottish Society has decided not to put on its annual Festival of Cultures, formerly known as the Scottish Festival, in future years, due to a lack of funds and difficulty in finding volunteers.
The funding difficulties stem from uncooperative weather during last year's festival. Rain put a severe damper on Saturday's festivities, and the society used its reserve funds to cover its expenses when turnout was low. The 2016 festival was only the third in its history to experience rain.
"We were able to pay all of our bills, which was good," said Verla Thomason, the society's treasurer who was involved in the festival for 21 of its 23 years. "But that leaves us with no resources to make it happen again."
The other, more long-running challenge, has been finding enough people to plan the event.
"It's a lot of fun, but you need people to do it, and it seems like we just lost a generation of volunteers," Thomason said.
The society is in the process of writing a proclamation thanking the city of McPherson and attendees for helping to make the festival a success.
"This has done a lot for McPherson's heritage," Thomason said.
The society started the festival as a small event, with celtic games and bands. It changed and grew through the years to include concessions, fencing, highland dancing and other events, culminating in last year's Festival of Cultures, which broadened the festival's scope to include all cultural heritages in McPherson.
While the Scottish Society won't spearhead any future festivals, it is open to letting other groups take it over and providing support.
"We're more than happy to help someone if they want to pick it up," Thomason said. "It's probably too late to be able to plan it for this year, though. We've always had to start planning for the next year at the end of each festival.
"We had some big, successful years, and it was fun," she continued. "We've had a good run, and no one is hanging their head over it."