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Jay Downie

For over thirty years, Jay has been involved in the planning, marketing and management of projects and events throughout the United States, Canada and Australia.

He led the entertainment and event initiatives of several major theme parks in the United States, Canada and Australia and helped conceive, develop and produce thousands of live shows, programs and events.  Responsibilities included special events planning and promotions, international performer auditions and recruitment and the operational planning and management of the entertainment departments for each of the parks.  His duties took him throughout the theme park system to coordinate and activate the entertainment programs, including the opening of new parks in Canada and Australia.

Jay produced major public and non-public events for corporate, convention and civic clients including the Centennial Celebration of Fiesta San Antonio, the Bicentennial Celebration of Cincinnati, Ohio and Knoxville, Tennessee’s Bicentennial Celebration. Corporate clients have included Avon Products, Proctor & Gamble, Kroger, Cintas, Time Warner Cable and AT&T.

Creating Tall Stacks in Cincinnati, Cincinnati’s centerpiece bicentennial event, celebrating the sternwheeler age in America, Jay also served as senior consultant and President/CEO for Grand Excursion, a multi-state initiative promoting the upper Mississippi River region.

Working with hundreds of dedicated volunteers, Jay has produced the MAIN ST. Fort Worth Arts Festival for twenty-two years, and the GM Financial Parade of Lights for eighteen years. These award-winning events have helped Downtown grow and prosper.

Jay has served on the board of directors of the International Festivals and Events Foundation (IFEA), and the Texas Festivals and Events Association (TFEA), serving in various capacities, including chairman. He has been recognized by TFEA as the Professional of the Year in 2018. A long-time member of Downtown Fort Worth Rotary Club, Jay attends the First Presbyterian Church and is married to Debbie, a retired art teacher. He has two children – Drew, living in Palm Springs, California, and Kelsey Downie Thueneman in Cincinnati, and two delightful grandsons. Jay resides in Downtown Fort Worth and loves the active, exciting environment of the Downtown community!

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