Frequently Asked Questions

We’ve received an outpouring of responses. Thank you so much for all your support, comments, and stories.

We are doing our best to address your questions, and appreciate your concern and curiosity. Below are answers to some of your questions. You can also share your input or questions here. or our Executive Director Corrie Zoll can be reached at [email protected]

This page will be updated as new information becomes available.

Wasn’t MayDay a success this year? 

In many ways, HOBT’s MayDay 2019 was a wild success. Attendance, fundraising and community passion for the event surpassed all expectations. At the same time, structural problems remain. HOBT is too small an organization to solely take on the production and financial responsibilities of a festival that this year attracted 75,000 in attendance. The urgency of producing such a large event in such a short time makes change difficult. The voices of artists of color have been systematically marginalized and appropriated, and this cannot continue.

For these reasons, we must invest our time and resources in rebuilding MayDay to equitably and resiliently continue as a valuable institution for future generations.


What will happen on the first Sunday of May, 2020? 

That is up to the MayDay Council. Here’s what won’t happen: we won’t be getting a parade permit, and we won’t be getting a festival permit. The first Sunday in May won’t be the MayDay you’ve come to know and love over the last 45 years, but the spirit of MayDay will be alive this spring. Trust that we care deeply about this day, and stay listening for updates from the MayDay Council. 


Will the MayDay Council be the ones to give artistic leadership? 

We need to discern what MayDay is before we can determine who is working on it. The MayDay Council will be tasked with recommending a MayDay process that will include recommendations for what artistic leadership might look like. 


But what about this year we are facing, the election etc?

HOBT hopes to work with the community to honor the energy of what would typically go into producing a parade and festival and collectively identify ways to redirect this energy in 2020.


How will this decision impact MayDay financially?

MayDay and plenty of other festivals in the Twin Cities are finding that the festival model is very risky financially. Expenses are higher every year, and income is impacted by unpredictable things like the weather. Making MayDay more financially resilient is one of the core goals of this work.


Will there be more layoffs?

No additional layoffs are planned at this time. Our current staff capacity after this year’s layoffs is in fact too small to do the work of rebuilding MayDay, and so in the coming months, we will be working to add staff capacity.

How can I be involved?

Thanks for asking! Here are some of the ways we’d love your involvement and support: 

  • Nominate individuals to serve on the MayDay Council. Over a two-year term, this team will be tasked with designing a collaborative MayDay model and will represent a wide range of the communities present in our neighborhoods. Compensation, childcare, travel expenses, accessible meeting spaces, and food will be provided. This group will meet twice a month at most, with a day-long kick-off retreat in November. Nominations open today and will be open until October 12th. Nominations can be made by filling out a short nomination form which can be found at or by calling HOBT Executive Director Corrie Zoll at 612-540-5366. 
  • Sign up for text updates. Text MayDay to 77222 for updates on the MayDay in Metamorphosis process. We will also continue to make updates as the MayDay Council is selected and convened at 
  • Become a monthly donor. This work of transforming HOBT’s MayDay requires financial support. By giving monthly, your gift builds a predictable source of income to fund a resilient and equitable future for MayDay. 
  • Work with In the Heart of the Beast. Our incredible MayDay artists would love to work with your neighborhood, community group, school, or place of worship. For more information about HOBT’s education and residency programs, click here or email [email protected].


What does this mean for other HOBT programming?

HOBT will continue to offer residencies and host quarterly Puppet Cabaret events. HOBT will continue to support the development of new works of puppetry through an NEA-funded project working with artists Julie Boada, Rebekah Crisanta de Ybarra, and Elle Thoni as well as seeking funding for a project being developed by artists Junauda Petrus and Steve Ackerman.

HOBT will increase the ways it shares the Avalon Theater. This summer we hosted Queertopia, Indigo World DJ Collective, and The Amazing Acro-Cats. This fall, Barebones Productions will use the Avalon Theater as a build space for their Halloween Extravaganza. 


Will HOBT still be offering community programming throughout the year?

Yes! HOBT will continue to offer community programming and would love to work with your neighborhood, community group, school, or place of worship. For more information about HOBT’s education and residency programs, click here or email [email protected].


While we cannot answer every request for information immediately, we are committed to responding to every question we receive. You can also leave questions and comments here. 

Council Nomination

Learn more about the MayDay Council and make a nomination.

Time To Change

More information about this decision and last year at HOBT.

Share your Input

We want to hear your reactions, questions, and feedback.