By JACQUELINE FERNANDEZ
The event, which has booked 35 acts, is among the largest free music festivals in Los Angeles and is expected to attract tens of thousands of people. But the community didn’t want it growing so large that the festival lost its neighborhood feel. The Center for the Arts Eagle Rock, the event’s organizers, worked with Councilman José Huizar’s office to re-work the festival to make it more intimate. The center will announce ERMF’s musical line-up in the coming weeks.
“We talked with the Center for the Arts and we all agreed that we wanted to be make sure it retained its local roots,” said Paul Habib, Chief of Staff of Council District 14. “We also wanted to continue to make sure it was free to the public, it was manageable and it was family-friendly. We love the event and we want to keep it in that mold.”
Council District 14 also helped the center by giving them direct funds and assisting them with rentals and street closure permits. The center also worked with the Eagle Rock Neighborhood Council, community leaders, their partner venues, local businesses, Occidental College and residents to showcase Northeast L.A.
Guests will see a few new changes this year.
According to Melinda Ann Farrell, Executive Director of the Center for the Arts, there will be a dedicated locals stage on the festival route.
Other new features include a visual arts component along Colorado Boulevard. “Eastside artists and children from our afterschool arts program, Imagine Studio, will have their artwork showcased throughout the festival,” said Farrell.
Neighborhood restaurants will be another focal point of the festival, with neighborhood eateries offering special menus.
After postponing last year’s festival, the organizers had initially said the event would be held this spring. But due to scheduling conflicts, the date was pushed back until August. However, the new date will mean the Eagle Rock Music Festival will compete with Echo Park Rising, another large music and arts festival, that will take place on the same weekend.
For those ERMF fans who miss this year’s event, they will be glad to hear that some of the musical acts will be featured in a year-around showcase at the Center for the Arts’ home on Colorado Boulevard.
“We are launching a monthly Locals Night music series at Center for the Arts Eagle Rock,” Farrell said. “This will allow us to present new talent we’ve discovered through the festival. With so much great music out there, it makes sense to bring it to the community all year round.”
Jacqueline Fernandez is a Los Angeles-based reporter who’s written for various media outlets such as Los Angeles Wave, The Miami Herald and WLRN-Miami Herald News.
- Got a story, tip, question or photo to share? Submit it here