The weekend is designed for visitors to be immersed in a “bold and imaginative spectacle” of performance, music and art, and follows last year’s pilot event which saw about 20,000 people flock to Preston.
Organisers have now announced that Preston Guild Hall is to be headline sponsor for the event, to support Preston Council to make Lancashire Encounter an “even bigger success”.
Last year, the event took place in the centre of Preston beneath a series of custom-made red canopies, with a “buzz of creativity” in the city.
Now, following funding from Arts Council England and Without Walls, and support from the Guild Hall, organisers are promising a bigger, better programme.
From a procession of light weaving through the city centre to a giant wheel house rolling through the crowds, circus acts and free workshops, bosses hope it will be a “Lancastrian extravaganza”.
Organisers say, to keep the festival free, Lancashire Encounter 2016 needs support from local businesses.
Coun Peter Kelly, cabinet member for culture and leisure at Preston Council said the festival was a chance for the city to show off what it has to offer.
He said: “We are thrilled to have Preston Guild Hall on board for Lancashire Encounter 2016.
“The programme is shaping up to be a fantastic mix of performances and experiences from artists and groups across Lancashire, and is also a great opportunity for Preston to show off all that it has to offer.
“We hope to see more local businesses and organisations get involved over the coming months to make this a truly great event.”
Richard Simkin, head of operations at Preston Guild Hall, said: “We were really pleased to hear that Lancashire Encounter was returning to Preston city centre again this year and are proud to be supporting Preston Council to make it an even bigger success.
“As an entertainment, dining and leisure business at the heart of the city, we are keen to be involved in and support key events like this, which help feed into the local economy.”