Wednesday, May 29, 2013
Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Hat City Streets Festival, Saturday, June 15, 11am - 9pm, will Animate New Jersey's Orange Valley with Music, Art, Family Activities, Food, and More!
ORANGE NJ --- The inaugural Hat City Streets Festival on Saturday, June 15 from 11am to 9pm, is a day-long cavalcade of music, arts exhibitions, family activities, delicious food, and non-stop fun that reflects the spirit and diversity of the region and celebrates the creativity of Orange. The Festival is free and open to the public.
Produced by ValleyArts and hosted by volunteers of Creative Orange, the Festival is centered at the corner of Forest and Tompkins Streets, which will be closed for the occasion, and on the grounds of the International Central Gospel Church (438 Valley Street, Orange NJ). Festival programs will also take place at the Firehouse Gallery, Hat City Kitchen, Ironworks Community Art Center, Yema Gallery, Arts Unbound, and other nearby spaces in the Valley Arts District. Free parking is available at nearby churches, and on the streets.
The Hat City Streets Festival will feature concert headliners that range from Brazilian reggae to contemporary gospel; appearances by marching bands, choirs, dance ensembles, and a step team; arts exhibitions by professional artists from around the region; and a variety of arts activities for children and families, including hat-making workshops that evoke the neighborhood's past as the hat-making center of the world.
"Our Festival will be something akin to a great church picnic and art show that transforms itself into a professional concert stage," said Richard T. Bryant, ValleyArts executive director and co-chair of Creative Orange. "In addition to a full day of music, art, food, and fun, festivalgoers will also experience the extraordinary hospitality of the people of Orange."
Opening at 11am, the "Family Stage" will feature performances by professional bands and dance ensembles, and appearances by award-winning vocal and instrumental performers from Orange High School, including the marching band.
Heralding the afternoon opening of "The Mainstage" will be 100 Voices of Hillside, the acclaimed children's choir directed by Troy Bell. Next up is Kiwi, the fast-rising New Jersey band that performs Brazilian music and jazz with influences of Jamaican reggae, ska, rocksteady, American folk, soul, and R&B. Also featured is Wincey Terry, the gifted storyteller and powerful singer whose songs of life and faith are propelled by a tght band that includes brass and winds. At the dinner hour, one of the New York area's most popular Salsa bands, Ray Rodriquez and Swing Sabrosa, will launch a big, brassy celebration of Latin music that will have you dancing. Capping the evening will be High and Mighty Brass Band, the fiercely entertaining group that channels the energy of a New Orleans second line into a brassy explosion of Funk, R&B , Afro-Beat, Hip Hop, and more!
Visual art on display will include the ValleyArts Firehouse Gallery exhibition by Afro-Cuban artist Eduardo Roca (known as Choco), "Retrazos del Sol (Traces of the Sun)." Choco, who lives and works in Havana, is one of Cuba's most important artists and is internationally recognized for his collagraphs, ceramics and oils. The nearby Ironworks Gallery will open "Tatamae Alive," featuring the paintings of ORNG Ink artist Khari Ricks. The event will also include a hip-hop dance jam. The YEMA Gallery will also be open with "Call & Re-Call: An Exhibition of Artist-made Books," curated by Terry Boddie.
A range of delicious foods found in the Valley Arts District will be available onsite, with a "Feast on the Street" featuring a long table so visitors can enjoy their food and share their festival experience together. The grounds of the Hat City Streets Festival are alcohol free. Participating restaurants include El Palacio del Pollo, Hat City Kitchen, La Galera Centroamericana, Libretti's, SuzyQues BBQ, Valley Diner, and others, to be announced.
Also participating in the Festival are: the anchor organizations of the Valley Arts District including HANDS, Inc., ORNG Ink, Luna Stage, Arts Unbound, YEMA Gallery, and Garden State Urban Farms; City of Orange Township Department of Parks and Recreation; Orange Board of Education; and several area churches.
Visit valleyartsnj.com/hat-city-streets for more information and a complete, updated schedule of events and activities. At this site, you can also sign-up to volunteer or apply for an arts booth.
ValleyArts is the arts service and activist organization of the Valley Arts District. The highest priorities of ValleyArts are to inspire the neighborhood to recognize the arts as essential to community health and vitality; help build up and serve individual artists, arts organizations, and creative entrepreneurs; and encourage everyone to participate in arts, culture, and creativity as part of everyday life. To propel this mission, ValleyArts seeks to attract, serve, and support artists and creative organizations to work and live in the Valley Arts District. ValleyArts is closely allied with HANDS, Inc., a nonprofit organization that combines strategic real estate investment and community organizing to revitalize communities.
ValleyArts is funded in part by JPMorgan Chase Foundation, The Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, Kresge Foundation, New Jersey State Council on the Arts, Wells Fargo Regional Foundation, Orange Orphan Society, Junior League of the Oranges and Short Hills, Essex County Division of Cultural and Historic Affairs, and others. The membership roster includes visual and performing artists, creative entrepreneurs, area businesses, audiences, art buyers, and community members.
About Creative Orange
Creative Orange is a city-wide collaborative effort to further advance Orange through arts, creativity, and innovation. In recognition of Orange's emergence as a significant creative place in the State, Creative Orange was formed last year as one of six sites in the state-wide Creative New Jersey movement. Last March, nearly 100 Orange leaders from the arts, business, religion, education, real estate, government, and civic sectors came together for a two-day, multi-generational retreat to build a shared agenda for the future. More information about the Creative Orange agenda can be found at valleyartsnj.com/creative-orange
Monday, May 6, 2013