Neighbors from across Rochester united in the Kutzky Park neighborhood this weekend for the second year of Porchfest, an event that partners local musicians with area homeowners who offer up their porches, decks, and lawns for the artists to perform.
Rochester’s inaugural Porchfest took place last fall and attracted nearly 300 attendees. This year’s event drew even greater crowds, with initial estimates at over 400, according to event organizer and Kutzky Park Neighborhood Association president, Jesse Welsh.
Fifteen musicians played at thirteen homes throughout the afternoon, and Welsh said some homeowners went above and beyond to draw in friends and neighbors. One couple had just moved into Kutzky Park less than six months ago, she says, but they loved the idea so much they took it the extra mile.
With the rapid population growth predicted for Rochester over the coming years, DMC and other community leaders appreciate the need to channel days gone by and rekindle the sense of fellowship that existed among neighbors before smartphones and Wi-Fi became the norm.
In 2007, a group of Ithaca, New York residents started a local festival to bring back a sense of unity to their community and celebrate local musicians. They launched the first “Porchfest,” an event that partnered local musical talent with area homeowners who provided porches, decks, and lawns where the artists could perform. Since that first event ten years ago, similar events have sprung up in cities all around the nation.
Rochester’s first Porchfest took place in the Kutzky Park neighborhood last fall when 12 hosts invited local musicians to perform outside their homes. More than 300 people attended the city’s inaugural event, and organizers are looking forward to an even greater turnout for Porchfest 2017, scheduled for Saturday, September 16.