Issue 34pulse

Porchfest Overview

By Jordan Severns

The arts give life and energy to any community, and few art forms bring people together quite like a concert. That’s why on May 20, downtown Modesto is being transformed into a free music festival for the second annual Porchfest!

Modesto Porchfest is a series of concerts held in the College, La Loma, and Downtown neighborhoods, where generous folk have offered up their porches, patios, and driveways for the day in the name of music and fun. Local musicians including Built Like Alaska, Adam Bishop, and The Rob Hill Band headline this collection of mini parties which run from noon until 5 p.m.

Although they exist all over the country, Porchfest is a very new event here in Modesto. Despite its infancy, the event organizer, Kate Trompetter, was pleased to report that it is a growing success.

“We have more porches and musical performances than last year,” said Trompetter. “The community seems really excited about the return of Porchfest and we’re happy to keep it going.”

More musical performances means more variety, too. There are artists coming from out of town to play alongside our local artists, and together they offer everything under the sun including R&B, rock and roll, bluegrass, ukulele, and ska.

Trompetter also notes the communal and generous atmosphere of the event—after all, people are donating their homes and the musicians are donating their time—and makes just one request of concert-goers, if they can afford it.

“Tip the musicians… they are artists and such a treasure for our community. They deserve our financial support for all the time they put into their craft and all they give to us.” Be sure to thank the porch hosts as well, and take care of the city as you enjoy the event.

Attendees are encouraged to bring bikes for transportation (although walking and driving are fine, too!), as well as blankets and chairs for seating, and of course sunscreen for protection. Children are perfectly allowed as well, though be warned that the event does not censor band content.

Musicians of all kinds play a large role in defining the culture and atmosphere of a city, so be sure to check out Porchfest this May to celebrate the talented artists who make our city what it is, and spend a memorable day with other members of the community. You’ll be glad that you did!

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