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Hat City Streets Festival – Music, Food, Arts, Fun

June 13, 2015 @ 11:00 am - 7:00 pm


3rd Annual Hat City Streets Festival Returns to the Valley Arts District in Orange & West Orange NJ, Sat, June 13, 11am-7pm


Mainstage Headliners are Guitar Genius Billy Hector, Soul Powerhouse Bobby Harden, Mac & the Hispanic Mechanics, and Glenn Franke Big Band


ORANGE, NJ – Come make a hat or wear your favorite hat, experience music that will get you grooving and dance that will get you moving — and enjoy great food, and family activities at the 3rd Annual Hat City Streets Festival, presented by ValleyArts on Saturday, June 13 from 11am to 7pm. The Festival is a day-long cavalcade of live music and dance performances, visual art exhibitions, and non-stop fun that celebrates the spirit and diversity of the region. The Festival and all of its events are free and open to the public.  For more information, please visit www.valleyartsnj.com/hat-city-streets.


The Hat City Streets Festival is located at Forest, Tompkins, and South Jefferson Streets in Orange. Festival programs will also take place in the streets, at the ValleyArts Firehouse Gallery, ValleyArts Creative Co-op, Ironworks Community Art Center, Arts Unbound, and on the grounds of the International Central Gospel Church. Free parking is available at nearby churches and on the streets.  


Participating organizations from the Valley include Luna Stage, Arts Unbound, ORNG Ink, Yema Gallery, Oualie Gallery, masConsumption, Urban Oasis Farms, Hat City Kitchen, HANDS, Inc., City of Orange Township, and Orange Public Schools.  Orange’s largest employer, LycoRed will also participate in the festivities.


As the Valley Arts District celebrates its 10th Anniversary, the area’s arts offerings and facilities have been burgeoning, adding to the already vibrant creative life to be found there. In May, the District opened The Powerhouse, with four commercial tenants; Kelli Copeland Lofts, with eight artist live-work spaces, both developed by HANDS, Inc., and the new ValleyArts Creative Co-op, which will soon offer rentable shred working space and equipment for artisans and craftspeople.


“The fact that this year’s Hat City Streets Festival has converged with the 10th Anniversary of the Valley Arts District and the opening of our new Creative Co-op, underscores the impact arts and community-driven economic development can have on a neighborhood, a city, and a region,” said Richard T. Bryant, director of ValleyArts and the Festival’s executive producer. “The Festival is not only a wonderful day of music, art, food, and fun, but is also a powerful symbol of how far Orange has come in its quest to build a just and beautiful city.”



The Hat City Streets Festival’s Mainstage will feature world-class, live concert headliners from 3 to 7pm, including the 17-piece Glenn Franke Big Band, who perform dazzling arrangements by Count Basie, Buddy Rich, Woody Herman, and other giants of the big band/swing era and Bobby Harden, one of NYC’s most acclaimed soul artists.  Next up are Mac & the Hispanic Mechanics, another big band,who bring together Latin and Soca sounds with a highly danceable beat.  The final concert of the day will be performed by Billy Hector, one of today’s hottest and most intriguing guitarist/songwriters. Mr. Hector is a native of Orange who now returns to Orange by way of the rest of the world.


The Family Stage will spotlight amazing professional performers as well as performers from the local community, such as Marafanyi Drum, Dance and Song and Orange Dance Conservatory. Additional special artists include Sky Jaffe’s Reach for the Sky, performing circus acts for all to enjoy; Moona Luna, offering catchy pop songs in Spanish and English for kids of all ages; Voices in Harmony, Orange High School’s premier traveling choir; Toni Blackman, global Ambassador/rapper/lyricist empowering the audience through hip-hop; Zimbabwean singer/musician, Tanyaradzwa Tawenga, and singer-songwriter, Siriom Singh. The Festival also presents a variety of young performers, including Forest & Heywood Dance Ensemble and the Forest Street School Band, through ValleyArts’ partnership with the Orange Public Schools.



Throughout the day, you can celebrate the creative spirit of Orange by visiting the festival’s numerous art exhibitions, including Open Orange 2015 at the Firehouse Gallery (580 Forest Street), a juried exhibition that feature 97 works by 35 artists from New Jersey and New York.  There will also be art exhibitions on tap at a “pop-up” gallery at the ValleyArts Creative Co-op (400 South Jefferson Street), featuring works by 30 local Orange artists and a printmaking demonstration.


Bring the kids for a plethora of hands-on creative-arts activities, including hat-making workshops that recall the neighborhood’s historic past as hat-manufacturing center in the early 20th century.  Kids can also make a glass bracelet with Newark-based GlassRoots, and try printmaking with artist Stephen McKenzie


A feast of delicious foods found in the Valley Arts District and nearby towns will be available for purchase at the Festival.   (Note that the grounds of the Hat City Streets Festival are alcohol-free and family-friendly.)



Festival events will kick off with a “Big Pop-Up Party” on Friday, June 12 at 7pm Beginning a new tradition, the party is a fund-raiser for the ValleyArts, featuring a celebratory casual supper, music, and the “lighting up” of the District’s newest building, the ValleyArts Creative Co-op.  (Tickets $75 each; order at valleyartsnj.org/popupparty).


The Hat City Streets Festival is produced by ValleyArts, the arts service and activist organization of the Valley Arts District of Orange and West Orange NJ. The Festival’s Executive Producer is Richard T. Bryant; Mainstage Producer is Mike Griot; Operations Producer is Diane LeBron. Associate Producers are Tracye Johnson, Jeremy Moss, and Marisa Benson. 


About ValleyArts

ValleyArts is the arts service and activist organization of the Valley Arts District, home to Luna Stage, ArtsETC, Arts Unbound, ORNG Ink, Hat City Kitchen, ValleyArts Firehouse Gallery, Urban Oasis Farms, Performing Artists United, Ironworks Community Artist Center, Oualie Gallery, PWI Media, Youth Diversity Theatre, and many individual artists and creative entrepreneurs. 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; encourage everyone to participate in arts, culture, and creativity as part of everyday life, and help lead arts and community-driven economic development. 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, Wells Fargo Regional Foundation, Bank of America Foundation, Hyde and Watson Foundation, Essex County Division of Cultural and Historic Affairs, United Way, and others.


June 13, 2015
11:00 am - 7:00 pm
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Valley Arts District
580 Forest Street
Orange, NJ 07050 United States
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