THE 2014 Kiama Jazz and Blues Festival is assured but all bets are off after that, according to festival director Ross Eggleton.
Next year the festival will not get the $10,000 Premier's Discretionery Funding it had enjoyed for the past two years, and is evaluating options to meet that shortfall.
Kiama MP Gareth Ward said he had urged the Jazz Club to apply for other funding available through the arts funding program.
Mr Eggleton believes that without significant sponsorship, the event could have to go back to its ticketed format, a move he would resist.
"We'll be struggling," Mr Eggleton said. "If we don't get funding, or can't find a major sponsor I can't see how we could go on really.
"Since it has been a free event the crowds have really increased dramatically and I wouldn't like to see it go back to being ticketed."
Kiama Jazz Club president Doug Faulkner said they will apply for government funding through other avenues but also echoed Mr Eggleton's concerns about staging the $50,000 event.
He said with the festival in its 27th year and a major drawcard for visitors to the town, it was important the community supported it.
He said the club was in negotiations with the Chamber of Commerce about possible funding and also welcomed anyone interested in either being a sponsor or helping to seek sponsors.
Mr Faulkner and Mr Eggleton were grateful for the support of Kiama Council, Kiama Tourism and venues including The Sebel, Kiama Leagues Club, Kiama Bowling Club, Gerringong Bowling Club, Jamberoo Pub and Grand and Kiama Inn hotels, saying that without their support the festival wouldn't happen.
Mr Eggleton said a series of fund-raisers like one at the Kiama Bowling Club on Saturday would ensure the festival planned for March 7 to 9 will go ahead.
Kiama Jazz Club's Blues Bash features entertainment by Dr Goodvibe, The Jacky Howellers and Hog Squeal from 7.30pm.
Dr Goodvibe is comprised of the Central Coast's Edu Valk on guitar and vocals, and Christian Marsh, regarded as Australia's premier harmonica player.
The act won the 2005 ABC Radio "blues and roots" category and instrumental song of the year.
The Jacky Howellers, from the Illawarra, are a traditional blues outfit.
They feature Rod Mitchell (guitar and vocals) and Dan Sullivan on harmonica.
This act has recently been awarded a spot at the 2014 Australian Blues Music Festival.
Hog Squeal are also from the region, featuring Lee Holman on vocals and harmonica, and Greg Joseph and Ben Rish on guitars.
Entry is free and a gold coin donation will be collected. There will also be two raffles.
For more information about the festival and to help, visit the kiamajazz.com website.