From St. Augustine Record by Devin Long February 16, 2017
Lincolnville is gentrifying. The neighborhood, founded by former slaves in 1866, encopmasses 45 blocks in St. Augustine, and is bounded by Cedar, Riviera, Cerra, Washington and DeSoto streets. It was a hotbed of civil rights activism in the 1960s, and the neighborhood’s Washington Street was once the heart of St. Augustine’s black business community.
Things have changed since then. Rising property prices in downtown St. Augustine have produced an influx of white middle-class families in the area, and some former African-American residents have moved out.
Despite all of this, many in the community strive to maintain a close-knit neighborhood, and the Lincolnville Porch Fest is yet another event aimed at engendering community cohesion.
“I want neighbors to leave their houses, walk around and talk to each other,” Jae Bass, the event’s founder, says.
And there’s a good likelihood people will do just that.
“There’s a lot of buzz,” Bass says. “Everyone has heard about it.”
And for good reason. The porch fest is set to bring over 30 local bands to the neighborhood along with various food and drink vendors.
Bass was inspired to create the Lincolnville Porch Fest by her own experiences of having musicians over to jam on her porch.
“I’ve lived here for nearly four years now, and my house has had a lot of history with artists and local bands that have played and recorded here,” she says. “I have had a lot of people play on my porch over the last few years.”
Those experiences got Bass to thinking about how she could bring this experience to the Lincolnville community as a whole. Until she decided last year to found the Lincolnville Porch Fest.
“I just got a wild hair, made a Facebook group and asked a group of local musicians if they wanted to do this,” she says.
The response was overwhelmingly positive, so Bass and about a dozen others set to work to plan the festival. They contacted bands, vendors and sponsors all in an effort to ensure the best experience possible.
The Porch Fest kicks off at noon Saturday, with musicians performing on four porches around Lincolnville until 6 p.m. when the porch fest pivots to St. Benedict the Moor Catholic Church for the closing acts.
The Emma Mosely Band will take the stage at 6 p.m., and they will be followed by performances by the Rivernecks and Telepathic Lines to close the festival.
Attendees are encouraged to walk or ride bikes to the event, but parking will be available for $2 at Eddie Vickers Park, 399 Riberia St. Shuttles will depart from the Willie Galimore Center located at the park.
For information, go to the event’s Facebook page.
For marble replicas of the lions on the Bridge of Lions click here