A new fall festival will take place in Severna Park on Sunday, September 19, from 1:00pm until 5:00pm. Created as an annual community event, the attraction will feature top-shelf jazz groups and fine art in the courtyard and interior of Cafe Mezzanotte at 760 Ritchie Highway (Route 2). The event rain date is September 26 and parking is free and plentiful.
The courtyard and gardens will open to ticketholders at 1:00pm, giving attendees an opportunity to view and purchase fine art and gift selections from Benfield Gallery, Gallery 564, McBride Gallery and Side Street Framers. Festival foods will be on sale, wine-tasting stations will be set up, and the restaurant will offer its full Mediterranean menu.
Music begins at 2:00pm with some of the most popular and innovative sounds to come out of the nation’s capital in decades. Led by international saxophonist and former Chuck Brown protégé Elijah Jamal Balbed, The JoGo Project combines jazz and go-go music in one highly entertaining band. Balbed will also perform a soothing set of jazz and Brazilian music with a smaller group - the Balbed/Arnold/Berkowitz Trio. Besides Balbed, the trio features two of the busiest musicians in the region: bassist Steve Arnold and drummer Julian Berkowitz.
The festival grew out of the “Jazz at the Mezz” series begun by Paulina Phillips and Theresa Sise of Jazz Beyond Borders. World music and jazz concerts have been presented by that organization online, indoors and outside at Café Mezzanotte since 2019. The idea of sponsoring a community event arose as they watched the jazz audience swell in numbers month after month and witnessed the desire for more outside activities. To produce the event, they have joined forces with Cafe Mezzanotte owner Kosmas “Tommie” Koukoulis and Jonathan Katz, representing The Voice Media, which plays an active role in area activities. Event proceeds will benefit The Food Project.
Tickets are on sale now. The discounted admission of $35 is available through September 1. Admission will be $40 thereafter. Purchase from InstantSeats: https://instnt.us/aitp.