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Oakhurst taking center stage on Oct. 9 for Porchfest

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Oakhurst taking center stage on Oct. 9 for Porchfest

VooDoo PoBoys perform southern style rhythm & blues on a Greenwood Place porch during the 2019 Oakhurst Porchfest.

Decatur, GA — Porches in Oakhurst will be filled with music on Saturday, Oct. 9, from noon to 7 p.m. during Oakhurst Porchfest.  The annual festival features various musical performances at residents’ homes, where their porches become stages and yards become venues.

Porchfest is a grassroots festival operated by residents and was established in 2015. The event saw more than 130 performances in four hours in 2015 and it culminated in what Georgia’s music tourism bureau called “very likely the most diverse lineup of any festival,” according to the Porchfest website.

The festival is open to all to celebrate music and community throughout one square mile of the Oakhurst neighborhood. Tickets are not required to attend Porchfest.

Organizers are committed to attendees’ health and safety but given the grassroots nature of Porchfest, they acknowledge that every venue is someone’s yard, where they have the right to set guidelines or not, and connection between yards is on open and fully accessible public streets.

“Which is all to say, you’ll need to consider and exercise your own discretion in terms of mask use, distancing, and more,” the event website says. “And we hope you’ll approach these matters with care, following the CDC guidelines in effect at the time of the event.”

The festival is made up of one-hour performances per porch as Porchfest is also a community-building effort and a celebration of music, so getting people out is key, according to the website.

“We aim to be a shifting, ever-evolving carnival of interactions and experiences. Not a collection of distinct, day-long yard parties,” the website states.

Porchfest will feature about 200 individual acts spread across an equal number of porches. The lineup includes The Druid Hills Billys, Yard Zeppelin, Atlanta Symphony Musicians and Friends, and Decatur Community Players.

To view the full schedule of performances, click here.

The event is in the southwest corner of Decatur, between Agnes Scott College and the College Heights neighborhood to the east and Kirkwood to the west.

According to the map on the event website, the boundaries of the event are South McDonough Street, West College Avenue to the north, Madison Avenue to the west and extends south to Northern Street and West Pharr Road.

Oakhurst Porchfest is returning to the neighborhood on Saturday, Oct. 9. This map shows the boundaries of the event. Photo is from the Oakhurst Porchfest website.

Streets will not be closed for Porchfest as the organizers and volunteers are committed to sharing public space and making the effort to accommodate one another. They encourage rivers to slow down and Porchfest attendees to remain aware of their surroundings, the website states.

Organizers encourage attendees to walk, bike, use MARTA or a rideshare, or ride a scooter to the festival. They warn drivers that traffic will be congested during the festival. But parking will be available at Fifth Avenue Elementary School, College Heights Early Learning Center, McKoy Park, Renfroe Middle School, Decatur High School, Agnes Scott College, and Oakhurst Presbyterian Church, according to the parking guide.

Porchfest organizer Scott Doyon created a GoFundMe fundraiser for Porchfest in May and over $15,000 has been raised. The money raised goes to the Decatur Arts Alliance. Funds will be used for police, porta potties, city sanitation fees, program design and printing, signage and promotional posters, block captain supplies, illustration and insurance. Unused funds will be rolled over to the following year, according to the GoFundMe page.

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