PortFest Returns For Eighth Annual Celebration

(Photo by Bill Brickner)

Port Washington excels in and embraces the arts, so it’s no surprise that each year for the past eight years there has been an annual celebration of arts, music and the creative spirit of the Port community.

Organized and presented by HEARTS PW, PortFest brings artists, musicians, dancers, poets and painters of all ages to the Seeber Field at Carrie Palmer Weber Middle School on May 19 from noon to 5 p.m.

“We’re down in New Orleans celebrating Jazz Fest and there are a lot of talks and articles about the role music and art plays in a community and how it brings everyone together and how it’s a celebration, a foundation for tradition,” said Damon Gersh, chairman and founder of HEARTS PW, explaining why events like PortFest are so important by comparing it to Jazz Fest. “I think having creativity as front and center in the community and school district serves as an anchor and beacon.”

This year, performances are set to include a variety of student ensembles from the elementary to high schools; local bands like Dave Diamond Band, Stupid 7 and NRG; Bach 2 Rock students; the Schreiber Theater Company; and Berest Dance Center. Local artists will also exhibit their work and offer demonstrations. Kids can try their hand at crafts like make your own paper lantern, create tie-dye T-shirts and hats, create your own terrarium and canvas spray art. There will also be a scavenger hunt for middle schoolers and a silent auction.

While walking the field and checking out the bands or dance performances, one can snag a snack from Ralph’s, Mel’s Ice Cream Truck, Mole Mole, Delicacies, a grilled cheese truck and Yummy Gyro.

“It’s just a great day for people to come out with their family and see creativity—whether it’s seeing a band, a school performance, seeing artwork or creative activities,” Gersh said.
During PortFest, the New York chapter of Bikes for the World is teaming up with the event on the Schreiber Campus from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. as a tax deductible collection point for used bicycles. For more information, contact kennymarxbikes@gmail.com or visit www.bikesfortheworld.org.

Parking and admission to PortFest are free to the public, with select craft activities requiring tickets. All proceeds raised at PortFest go directly to future HEARTS PW grants, which realize inspiring and engaging experiences for students across the Port Washington school district.