Hoboken’s premier cultural event, the Arts and Music Festival, happens twice per year. The first installment of the 2013 program, which took place in May, drew thousands and was one of the most successful and widely attended in the event’s history. Next weekend, on Sun. Sept 29, the city will try to capitalize on that success with the autumn version of the festival.
“One festival celebrates the beginning of warmer weather and relaxing summer days, while the other, celebrates the beginning of the fall season, shorter days, and cooler nights,” said Geri Fallo, the city’s director of cultural affairs. “It’s a great chance to get a jump start on your holiday shopping.”
The festival, as usual, will take place from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Washington Street between Observer Highway and Seventh Street.
In addition to three stages of live music, the festival boasts the participation over 300 artists, sculptors, photographers and local crafters. There will also be rides, games, and face painting for children. Local businesses and government agencies will be manning booths up and down the festival, mixed in with food vendors from Hoboken and beyond.
“I love how it all comes together in one day and is such a wonderful showcase for Hoboken – its artists, musicians, local businesses, food and more,” said Fallo. “And because it is on our main street, we hope that visitors will walk the festival and then wander onto the sidewalk to check out our wonderful shops, restaurants and cafes.”
The musical selections at this year’s festival are diverse, ranging from rockabilly folk to world music, but the highlight will be a performance by the Feelies, who made their name at the now-closed Maxwell’s, and reunited for a successful tour in 2008. This is the first time they’re performing in Hoboken since then, and their first time ever at the festival.
Speed the Plough, whose sound ranges from psychedelic rock to folk, are another Maxwell’s mainstay that will make its first appearance at the festival. Other bands celebrating Hoboken’s 1990s affiliation with the underground alternative rock scene at the festival this year include Davey & the Trainwreck and Stuyvesant.
“For some of the bands performing this year, it is their first time at the festival, so we are excited that they will get a chance to share their music,” said Fallo.
Other bands will include Jack Skuller, The NERDS, Carolina Jug Stompers, Gene D. Plumber, The Deb Stein Authority, The Fuzzy Lemons, Preschool of Rock, and the Garden Street School Band.
Currently, Fallo is looking for volunteers to help set up vendor booths in the morning, from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m. Anyone interested should contact the Cultural Affairs Office at (201) 420-2207 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
The festival is sponsored primarily by a grant from the New Jersey Department of State, with local support from United Water, Walgreens, Capital One Bank, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, and The Hudson Reporter.
A full scheduled and lineup for the musical acts is not yet available. For updates, visit: www.hobokennj.org/departments/human-services/cultural-affairs/arts-music-festival
Dean DeChiaro may be reached at email@example.com