Q: Does our local Chamber of Commerce own our communities local "Pageant"?
We have a pageant that has been in our community for over 30 years! Its never been filed as an official entity or organization. It has always been ran by different volunteers within the community. I know for several years our local Chamber sponsored the pageant. Then there was a issue with funds and they pulled there sponsorship and we found a different sponsor. A couple years later they sponsored us again. This year we decided to create a Pageant Board and create a 501C3 to officially have a "true entity" that can manage itself. Get our own insurance, write checks etc.The Chamber told the board we are not allowed to do this because they "OWN" the pageant. How can they own something that is not a true "Entity" It literally has no name! One year we called it the "The Green Sandwich" another "The Bananza Race" this year, "The Crew" How can they own it? Side note: They sent me minutes from a meeting they had 2 years ago where it says "Pageant would become property of the Chamber"
A: You definitely need to consult with an attorney.
Anybody can own a pageant and call it anyway they want.
The question is whether it is exclusive, and if what you do, your work, is owned by somebody else.
Check if they ever signed or got a contract from somebody.
Even if your entity does not exists legally or formally, it may have created the impression it does and therefore bind some members to other entities.
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