Since 2011, The Uptown West Neighbourhood has hosted the Grand Porch Party on the second Sunday of June. Nearly thirty local musicians take post on house porches between Alexandra Ave. and Dawson St. (north and south boundary) and Avondale Ave. and Short St. (west and east boundary), for an afternoon of connecting with others, enjoying the warm weather and appreciating the immense musical talent that resides in the Waterloo Region.
Aside from securing talented musical acts (and there are many), a key component of the porch party is finding neighbours who are willing to have musicians play on their porch. Whether the porch is large or small, wooden or carpeted, storage for toys or strollers or a lemonade sipping summer sanctuary, one thing is for sure – there would be no porch party without the porches and our generous neighbours who provide them.
Fortunately for the Grand Porch Party Planning Committee, finding porches has never been a problem. Our neighbours in Uptown West have been wonderful supporters of the Grand Porch Party and are often willing to go above and beyond to help make the event a success. Some extras that porch hosts have helped with over the years include allowing for a porta-potty on their property, encouraging young artists to cover their driveways in chalk or providing a spot on their front lawn for an information and merchandise tent. Many hosts provide their porch year after year.
In reflecting on the support we receive from our porch hosts during the Grand Porch Party I am reminded of the cultural significance of porches throughout history. Traditionally, porches represented ideals of family and neighborliness while connecting people with nature and their surroundings. Before automobile traffic, computer screens, TV’s and air conditioning our porches brought communities together. Thank-you to our porch hosts for your continued support and for assisting in reviving the original purpose of the porch.
If you are interested in providing your Porch for the Grand Porch Party please contact the Grand Porch Party Planning Committee at firstname.lastname@example.org