Melrose Porchfest happens the last Saturday of September. In 2022, it is on for September 24, from 2:00 pm - 6:00 pm. The rain date is September 25, from 2:00 pm - 6:00 pm.
Here are some things we'd like you to know...
You don't need a ticket. The shows are free. Performers are permitted to put out a tip jar and and give out or sell some swag - that's ok, Rene! You don't have to live in live in Melrose to attend or perform! We encourage and welcome diverse performers and audiences from far and wide to come to our lovely leetle City. Performances may include music, comedy, dance or spoken word.
If you are already fortunate enough to live here, consider participating! You don't have to literally have a porch to host! It could be your driveway, your lawn or yard. Wherever you plan to showcase our wonderful performers, it must be accessible to the viewing public! No hosting private parties in the backyard while huddled masses yearning to hear music strain their ears at the front sidewalk!
You must agree to host not less than 2 hours of music. If, for example, you are besties with a band who can fill an hour-long time slot at your porch, the Porchfest team will assign more performers to your porch! The Porchfest is a 4-hour event, so our goal is to fill every porch with 4 hours of performances whenever possible. The more performers that come with your porch, the more likely you will be selected to host, but you do not need to have performers to be selected!! While it is helpful to have you sign up as a host soon as possible, it is not first-come, first selected. We take a few things into consideration when selecting hosts, including porch location. We will reach out to let you know that we received your Host Form. We are a merry, scrappy band of volunteers who do this for love of community. We are selecting hosts and performers up to the last minute sometimes, so please be patient with us. We will let you know if you have been selected as soon as we can. If you submitted a Host Form, but circumstances change and you can no longer host, please send us an email at email@example.com. Otherwise we will assume that you are with us to the bitter end!!
The same is true for performers - please send us an email if you submitted a form but can no longer perform. Think of your host who has prepared their heart and home to receive and reveal you the the WORLD!!! It is not cool to leave them with all that tenderloin and champagne they had waiting for you, if you can avoid it. We will let you know that we received your Performer Form. Unlike hosts, unless we have specific reason for not being able to host you, we will find you a place to perform, so assume that your show will go on!!!
Other things to keep in mind include:
- Many of the performers are community members who have day jobs and perform as a side gig or hobby - this is a great venue for them to share their talent!!! Lets embrace that! We also love our Berklee-trained performers and touring bands equally. If you have performers for your porch, have them fill out a Performer Form that includes your address. Conversely - performers, if you have a host address, be sure to indicate that on your form.) You may not otherwise pick and choose who will play your porch. If you have a specific concern, please send us an email.
- Please keep in mind that this is a huge event attracting many, many families with many, many children. We need to know if you will be using any off-color language or doing anything risque in your performance, as we will be posting advisories on such acts for concerned audience members. We support the First Amendment and do not want to quash creativity, but please be aware that if we receive complaints about your performance, you might not be hosted in the future.
- Did we mention that this has become a huge event that is open to the public?? If you want to host, be aware that all kinds of lovely people from all over will be showing up at your doorstep!! If this does not sound like a wonderful thing to you, you may not want to be a host. It if sounds absolutely delightful, we strongly advise that you reach out to your neighbors and let them know your plans, as people may spill onto their property as they gather to witness the amazing performances taking place at your home!!!
- If you and your neighbors want, you can even close off your street and have a block party during Porchfest, but you must reach out to the City separately for this purpose at: https://www.cityofmelrose.org/public-works/pages/block-party. We cannot help you with this, because there is only so much we Porchfest elves can do. We cannot help you with food trucks and pony rides either. This you must do for yourselves. We are mighty, but small, yet adorable...
- We work closely with the City in planning Porchfest and will provide them with the addresses for Host porches. So beware of imitations! You cannot pretend to be part of Porchfest if you have not signed up and been selected. We only provide support to selected Hosts.
We Need YOU!!!
A community event like Porchfest runs on volunteers. You get to see great performers all day while helping your community enjoy a fun event! The basic roles for volunteers include prep work (posting flyers, setting out signs), helping people find their way around Porchfest, posting to social media, help hosts break down and clean-up, and contact the Porchfest organizing committee if something's not working at a porch (like a microphone isn't working or a horse is running amok through a host's front yard). It's lots of fun and IT'S THE ONLY WAY YOU CAN GET A REAL PORCHFEST T-SHIRT. If you'd like to volunteer, please fill out a Volunteer Form and thank you!!
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