Many thanks to all those that came out to support the 1st annual Music and Arts Festival at Johnson Park in Camden! Big thanks to all the vendors that participated, all the performers and all our partners who rose to the occasion to help make the day a tremendous success! Special thanks to the Independence Public Media Foundation who's generous support made it possible for us to have the event. The day was filled with music, art and love, as the city came together to heal the land, honor it's diversity, and continue shedding light on the beautiful culture that exist in Camden. It was AWESOME!!!
The Institute For The Development of Education in the Arts, together with Rutgers Camden Digital Studies Center Program in partnership with Cooper Grant Neighborhood Association and the Community Voices Committee present, "The 1st Annual Johnson Park Music and Arts Festival!" on September 11, 2021 from 12:00pm to 6:00pm. The theme and mission of the event is, "For the healing of the nation, city and tribes - A day of reflection into our past, as we create a solid foundation of hope for the future!" To achieve this, the day will be filled with music of different genres from local musicians and bands, presentations, arts and crafts, food trucks, and artist vendors around the park displaying their art.
For the past year and a half, IDEA has worked together with it's partners through a grant from the Independence Public Media Foundation's "Community Voices" program. The goal of the grant is "...to address the imagery on the frieze, as well as to create a conversation about the relationship between public art and power. Instead of proposing a single solution to the frieze, we would like to build connections among community stakeholders by developing multiple, layered, and ongoing media projects in this public space...this project will also intentionally build engagement with broader communities in Camden and find ways of keeping this space open to diverse and divergent ideas and bodies. In the near future, we envision community gatherings in the park which would observe social distancing measures, and in the long term we would hope to hold such gatherings inside of Johnson Library." You can click on the "Community Voices" tab to read more about the goal of the grant.
While there will be continuing projects, this festival is a culmination of the efforts over the past year to bring together the community to address, and accurately share the history of the indigenous people in the area. Our efforts have also been driven by a desire to come up with ideas and solutions on how Johnson Park can be used by the public on an ongoing basis. At one time, the park was a gathering space for the local community, and the Walt Whitman Center offered amazing performances by local and national artists. Over the years, that opportunity has not been available, and the divide between the park and the community has simply gotten wider. Our hope is that this festival will become a yearly event that recognizes all the deep, rich history of Camden and Johnson Park, and serve to "heal the land" through an event that brings the community together under the umbrella of "Love".
Not lost on us is the significance of the day. This year will mark the 20th anniversary of 9/11, a day in which the country suffered tremendous loss of life due to a terrorist attack on the World Trade Centers in New York City. Many first responders from around the country, including Camden, immediately rallied to offer support in finding survivors and helping to clear the site once known as "Ground Zero." We plan to honor the anniversary of this event, which really saw America come together.
Ways to Participate:
There are several ways you can participate in the event. Of course we invite you, your family and friends to join us on that day. Feel free to bring your blanket and chairs, relax in the park and enjoy the live bands and performances throughout the day! It will truly be a festive event!
Second, you can register to be a vendor by completing the "vendor registration form" that you can access through our website. When you click on the "Music and Arts Festival" tab on the menu bar, select "vendor registration form" from the drop down menu, and you'll be taken to the registration page where you can fill out the form. Once you've completed the form, hit the "SEND" button, and that form will be emailed to IDEA, where we will review your request and will let you know if you've been selected to be a vendor. Please note that we are receiving many request, however there are limited spaces available, so get your request in asap!
UPDATE: We've reached our capacity for vendors. Thanks so much for your interest, but we are not accepting anymore vendors at this time.
Third, you can be a sponsor. There are always costs associated with events like these, and any help you can provide will be greatly appreciated. To find out how to be a sponsor; on the same menu bar under the "Music and Arts Festival" tab is a "Sponsor Package" selection that outlines how you can support the effort to bring the community together. We encourage you to take a look at these packages and see if there is a way you can help.