Faced with the possibility of a smaller-scale Twilight Dance Series due to a sponsorship shortfall, the Santa Monica Pier Restoration Corporation has received a funding boost from the City Council to help preserve the free summer concerts.

The City Council approved a $35,000 matching grant March 9th to help maintain the popular summer concert series which celebrated its 25th anniversary last summer.

Pier officials have said that the series was in jeopardy of a shortened schedule due to a severe drop-off in corporate sponsorships over the past two years and the council was responding to a fundraising call put out by the restoration corporation. The series is jointly funded by corporate sponsorships and the corporation, which produces the event.

“I can’t thank the City Council enough for showing their support of this long-standing institution and joining us in rallying support from local businesses and individual community members.” said Kent Smith, chair of the Pier Restoration Corporation Board of Directors.

“This matching grant from the city is a great start, but it will take the support of everyone for us to raise the additional $57,000 needed to preserve the series this summer by March 24th.”

City Councilman Richard Bloom was joined by fellow Councilman Kevin McKeown in a call for community members to donate to the concerts and show their support by going to www.santamonicapier.org/ and clicking the donate button to make a contribution.

The pier’s board of directors will decide Wednesday, March 24th whether sufficient funding has been raised to pay for the Twilight Dance Series.