Popular Porchfest returns to downtown Bristol on Sunday

By Christy Nadalin
Posted 9/8/22

Scheduled for Sunday, Sept. 18, from 3 to 6 p.m., Bristol PorchFest 2022 will feature 9 porches and 18 musical acts.

This item is available in full to subscribers.

Please log in to continue

Log in

Register to post events

If you'd like to post an event to our calendar, you can create a free account by clicking here.

Note that free accounts do not have access to our subscriber-only content.

Day pass subscribers

Are you a day pass subscriber who needs to log in? Click here to continue.

Popular Porchfest returns to downtown Bristol on Sunday


If you know, you know — PorchFest is a great afternoon of music and has been since the inaugural event in 2018. Since then it’s grown some, though it remains true to its roots as a family-friendly event that celebrates music and community.

Scheduled for Sunday, Sept. 18, from 3 to 6 p.m., Bristol PorchFest 2022 will feature 9 porches and 18 musical acts.

“We have beautiful porches and great local musicians,” said MaryKae Wright, PorchFest co-chair. “Combining the two in our historic district is the perfect way to bring together friends and neighbors for an afternoon in Bristol.”

Last year’s PorchFest was a massive success, with an estimated crowd of more than 4,000 spectators taking to the streets.

“One of the most enjoyable things was meeting friends and neighbors coming together to enjoy a Sunday afternoon of great local music,” said Bradley Wester, Bristol PorchFest founder. Wester is also founder of Arts In Common, an organization that promotes local arts and culture in Bristol.

BayCoast Bank is the community partner sponsoring the music with a grant that lets each band receive a modest stipend. “We’re excited to help bring music to PorchFest while supporting the arts and local artists in our community,” said Sonia Couto, manager of the branch at 601 Hope St.

In addition, all bands get to keep tips collected during their performance. “If you love PorchFest, tip the bands,” said Wester.

Returning performers include Trinity, Los Duderinos, Catnip Junkies, Manel the Island Man, and Sinner’s Pie. And about half are new — look out for Vudu Sister grunge folk, Donnell Best Afro-Caribbean/R&B, as well as other diverse acts.

“Cajun to traditional Portuguese, folk to rock, there is something for everyone," said Dave Carney, PorchFest musical advisor.

“The team has done an amazing job of bringing back some musical favorites while adding new voices and sounds to the event,” said PorchFest Co-chair Nancy Kellner.

New this year, Mt. Hope High School has a dedicated porch at 142 High St. under the direction of Choral Director, David Lauria.

“Last year was the first time, and it went so well that we are getting the whole three hours,” he said. “We decided to include alumni because they didn’t get to do a lot of public performances these past couple of years. They are still an important part of Mt. Hope.”

Lauria said that they currently have 12 students and 12 graduates signed up to perform, and are planning two, hour-long mixed sets. “We will run it like our music cafe shows with an announcer and full tech team running the show,” he said. “The students are really excited.”

Police plan to close High Street from Walley to Byfield to help make the three-hour event safe. Police will stop traffic and patrol intersections Sunday afternoon starting around 2:45 p.m. until 6:15 pm. New this year, police have recommended a parking ban on High Street during the event.
Organizers also would like to remind attendees to be respectful of private property and take any trash they generate home with them.

If PorchFest is wrapping up and you want to keep it going, this year you can make your way to Unity Park for the afterparty from 5 to 8 p.m. — a perfect ending to the perfect day with even more music and Bristol’s newest local craft businesses, including Borealis Coffee Roasters, Pivotal Brewing Company, O'Brien & Brough, and Basil & Bunny.

Rain date is Sept. 25. For more information, email porchfest@artsincommon.org

The musicians
Allysen Callery is a self-taught singer-songwriter from Bristol whose delicate, mesmerizing sound has been compared to classic British folk artists like Sandy Denny and Nick Drake. 106 High St., 4:30 p.m.

Atwater-Donnelly is an award-winning, internationally acclaimed duo that blends gorgeous harmonies and plays an astonishing array of instruments including guitar, Appalachian mountain dulcimer, mandolin, tin whistle, harmonica, banjo, limberjacks, and other surprises. 106 High St., 3 p.m.

Catnip Junkies is a bunch of cool cats who really know how to swing. From NOLA jazz and classic swing all the way to jazzed-up modern pop songs, Catnip Junkies plays it all. 30 Walley St., 4:30 p.m.

Dave Richardson & Jan Schmidt are a musical collaboration that incorporates elements of classic Blues, Soul, Jazz, and Americana into a unique formula that showcases the breathtaking vocals of Jan Schmidt and the soulful guitar of Dave Richardson. 202 High St., 4:30 p.m.

Donnell Best is an exceptional singer/songwriter, violinist, and overall performer, blending Afro-Caribbean music with Pop/Soul/R&B. 202 High St., 3 p.m.

Get the Funk Out is a group of fun-loving musicians playing all your favorite music the way it was meant to be heard: with a full, fun, and funky-sounding horn section! 42 High St., 4:30 p.m.

Hollow Turtle’s Contemporary bluegrass features tightly wound vocal harmonies with relentless strumming and plucking from the string section. 123 High St., 4:30 p.m.

The Honk is a South County-based quintet that performs original instrumental and lyric Americana Jazz, Blues, Funk Country and Folk Ballads on guitar, mandolin, bass, percussion, viola/violin and keys. 85 High St., 4:30 p.m.

Joanne Lurgio’s vocals are consistently smooth as satin; the combination of her gifted voice and wonderful guitar work will prompt you to chase your dreams. 183 High St., 3 p.m.

Los Duderinos is Ben Coerper, Jhonny Sage, Chuck Cany, David Passafiume, Jr., Greg Ferreira, and Atticus Allen. They play eclectic/improv/covers/originals (bluegrass, jazz, folk, funk, jams). 42 High St., 3 p.m.

Magnolia has been New England's hometown Cajun band since 1989. Playing high-energy two steps and sultry waltzes, the band's twin fiddles, accordion, guitar, bass, and of course, rich vocals keep the audience on its feet long into the night. 70 High St., 4:30 p.m.

Manel the Island Man has been performing throughout the USA, Canada, and Portugal and winning the People’s Choice Award at the 2013 International Portuguese Music Awards. He has been featured on Portuguese TV and his songs are currently being promoted on Portuguese national radio. 183 High St., 4:30 p.m.

Mt. Hope Music (Student Variety) Mt. Hope Music is a collection of talented students performing solo and duo “acts” with guitar or keyboard in a variety of styles. Jazz, Broadway, rock, and pop; these gifted musicians can do it all! 142 High St.

Sinner’s Pie trio plays old-time Americana with Folk and Bluegrass stylings. Their vocal arrangements sate the appetite with edgy, soulful melodies and rich and mournful harmonies; their instrumentation is spirited and true to the soul. 123 High St., 3 p.m.

Strange Brew is Mick D'Agostino, Allen Sylvia, Paul Duarte, Chris Staton, Jim Padilla and Steve Mascena. They play an eclectic mix of 20th and 21st century rock n' roll and rhythm and blues. 70 High St., 3 p.m.

Trinity is 5 musicians performing the music and telling the tales of one of the first “Super Group’s” ever formed—Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young. Playing all of CSNY’s classic hits, along with songs from the individual members catalogs, you will be transported back to a time of peace and protest… when harmonies and lyrics mattered. 30 Walley St., 3 p.m.

Vudu Sister is Keith J.G McCurdy, an American singer/songwriter with French, Sicilian, and Romanichal roots, a student of Classics, and a brooding Byronic recluse, known for a gothic aesthetic and folk rhythms. 85 High St., 3 p.m.

2023 by East Bay Media Group

Barrington · Bristol · East Providence · Little Compton · Portsmouth · Tiverton · Warren · Westport
Meet our staff
Mike Rego

Mike Rego has worked at East Bay Newspapers since 2001, helping the company launch The Westport Shorelines. He soon after became a Sports Editor, spending the next 10-plus years in that role before taking over as editor of The East Providence Post in February of 2012. To contact Mike about The Post or to submit information, suggest story ideas or photo opportunities, etc. in East Providence, email mrego@eastbaymediagroup.com.