published Wednesday, August 1st, 2012

Chattanooga's HATCH Fest to change name after request from Montana group

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Organizers of the 10-day HATCH Fest will reveal a new name and brand next month after receiving a formal request from attorneys representing a similarly named event in Bozeman, Mont.

The local event, which debuted earlier this year, was held throughout the city as a showcase for "all facets of the creative culture," according to the event's website.

Hatch in Montana is an innovation festival, according to coordinator John Montoya. He said his organization decided last year to look into "cleaning up the brand" and found a couple of events with the name Hatch around the country. It had partnered with one in Asheville, N.C., but has decided not to run that event in the future.

Albert Waterhouse of Waterhouse PR, which helps produce the local event, said organizers received word just before the inaugural event here in April that they would need to change the name.

"We got word from a law firm in Montana, and we wrote back and said, 'Hey, we'll change the name, but we are days away from our event. Can we do the event and change the name afterwards?' And they said that was fine."

Waterhouse said his office actually had talked with the executive director of the Bozeman event during the due diligence process and was told "our event would not compete with theirs," so they proceeded with the name HATCH, an acronym for History, Arts, Technology, Culture and Happenings.

Event organizers have been working on a new name and hope to reveal it around the first of September, he said.

Allied Arts of Greater Chattanooga Executive Director Dan Bowers said he doesn't believe a name change diminishes the event.

"Oh no, oh no. A rose by any other name would be as sweet," he said. "I think it's all about the concept, and I think it was a tremendous success last year.

Contact staff writer Barry Courter at 423-757-6354 or at

about Barry Courter...

Barry Courter is staff reporter and columnist for the Times Free Press. He started his journalism career at the Chattanooga News-Free Press in 1987. He covers primarily entertainment and events for ChattanoogaNow, as well as feature stories for the Life section. Born in Lafayette, Ind., Barry has lived in Chattanooga since 1968. He graduated from Notre Dame High School and the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga with a degree in broadcast journalism. He previously was ...

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