Essex County News

15th Annual Maplewoodstock is this Weekend: July 14 and July 15

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The crowd at Maplewoodstock in 2017. Credits: Carl Patterson of CP Photography
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Maplewoodstock 2017 Credits: Carl Patterson of CP Photography
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MAPLEWOOD, NJ - The 15th Annual Maplewoodstock Music and Arts Festival, a free, two-day, live music and arts event, will be held this Saturday, July 14, and Sunday, July 15, from noon until 10 p.m. each day in Memorial Park.   

The 23 bands performing were selected from a record-high 109 applicants in 2018, who radiate from Maplewood/South Orange to other musical communities like Montclair, New Brunswick, Red Bank, and Brooklyn, according to a press release from event organizers.

Headlining on Saturday is Third World, which event organizers describe as "one of the longest-lived reggae bands of all time -- informed and influenced by funk, soul, and disco."

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Sunday's Headliner is Josh Ritter & The Royal City Band, which "travels in the channels of the Americana singer-songwriter tradition," according to event organizers. 

Saturday's show will also feature Hopewell, NJ, native Danielia Cotton, who "pulls inspiration from classic Motown as well as Sly and the Family Stone and presents strikingly optimistic message from abominable lows," stated event organizers.

Sunday's show will feature The Suffers, described by Spin magazine as “a ten-piece soul collective that steeps their tracks in jazzy history with a modern twist. They’re the sort of neo-retro group you never knew music was so badly missing.”

“We aim to put on the best possible free music and art festival that we can – one with deep roots in the Maplewood community,” says volunteer Maplewoodstock Festival Chairperson Drew Dix. “We are nine of your friends and neighbors who volunteer all year long to put this festival together.  We love seeing old friends and making new ones out enjoying the gorgeous weekend. So, come relax on your blankets and lawn chairs, bring a picnic basket, and enjoy a family-friendly weekend of music, art, food, and the best of the Maplewood community.”

In addition to the music, there will be local arts and crafts vendors with handcrafted goods, artwork, clothing, and jewelry, as well as a food court with options that include burgers, tacos, lobster rolls, Thai food, fresh squeezed lemonade, and jerk chicken, according to event organizers.

Maplewoodstock will also have a beer garden, a large KidZone with games, inflatable rides, crafts, and more.

The town of Maplewood also offers a senior-friendly tent for those long-time citizens who want to come out, enjoy the youthful energy, sit in the shade, and enjoy a meal from our food vendors that can be delivered from volunteers run by the Age Friendly Committee for Maplewood and South Orange, stated the press release about the event.

For those hearing-impaired, Maplewoodstock will offer, for the second year, volunteer-organized sign language interpretation for several hours each day -- typically 5 p.m. until closing. According to the press release, "while we cannot offer reserved seating space, if you are seeking sign language interpretation, you should aim to situate yourself at 'House Right' – about 20 feet from the right-front corner of the stage.  We will mark the area with 'Deaf Area' signs and ask attendees to self-police and be gracious and neighborly in sharing/ceding space for those wanting to view the sign language interpreters."

Volunteer Maplewoodstock Festival Chairperson Drew Dix also added, “The last few years, we’ve almost become the victims of our own success, with very large crowds and some confusion about when and where tents and canopies can be erected."

cThe full canopy, space and crowd policy can be read here, and includes that no canopies or personal items can be in the park earlier than 5 a.m., and must be removed overnight on Saturday.

To learn more, visit Maplewoodstock.com.

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