‘Under Cover Music Fest’ Kicks off Summer in South Orange June 1

Mark Murphy & Friends, Under Cover Music Fest South Orange

From the South Orange Village Center Alliance:

Downtown South Orange will draw more than a thousand residents and visitors to its groovy summer kick-off event, Under Cover Music Fest, which features six cover bands and a bustling beer garden—plus, no cover charge. On Saturday, June 1, from 4 pm to 10 pm (rain date Sunday, June 2, from 3 pm to 9 pm), South Orange Village Center Alliance (SOVCA) is pleased to present the second annual Under Cover Music Fest, a free event for all ages in the heart of South Orange on Sloan Street. After a successful inaugural year, the cover band festival is back, and bigger and better than before.

During Under Cover Music Fest, world-class musicians from the area will be performing covers of the most popular hits from a collection of famous artists: Aretha Franklin (Mark Murphy’s Music Student Band: Dithmi & The Franklins), Prince (Ricky Persaud, Jr. & Crossroads), The Meters (Nation Beat), Bill Withers (Curtis Winchester Band), Dave Matthews Band (Mark Murphy and Friends) and Radiohead (Charlie Pollock and Friends). The festival aims to bring people together through their common love of music and community, while dancing in the streets of downtown South Orange.

“The Under Cover Music Fest is an exciting opportunity to bring residents and visitors downtown to experience the Village center and to showcase the musical talents in our community. Furthermore, the money raised through sponsors is being reinvested back into the community through beautification and other neighborhood enhancements,” explained Steven Pedigo, SOVCA Chair. “It’s also a terrific kick-off event for the summer.”

New this year is a large beer garden (cash bar) hosted by The Fox & Falcon, which will serve beer from four regional top breweries (SOMACartonAsbury Park and Founders), wine, cider, and a “Flood’s Hill” specialty cocktail (Espolon Blanco Tequila, Combier, lime, English cucumber and black pepper). The beer garden will be located on Sloan Street at the crosswalk in front of Starbucks (youth are permitted to enter, and provisions will be in place to ensure there is no under-age drinking). Kids activities will be provided by General Store Cooperative, which will also be selling music-centric wares from local independent stores, markers and artist.

“Our partnership with SOVCA continues to bring to life incredible experiences for the SOMA community and we couldn’t be more excited to support their remarkable year-round community enhancement and beautification efforts,” says David Massoni, Owner, The Fox & Falcon. “This will be the first year we showcase our dedication and commitment to South Orange’s arts and music community, while showing support for our outstanding partner breweries and further introducing the culinary stylings of our Executive Chef Matt Ruzga.”

Residents are allowed to bring their own food, blankets and low-profile folding chairs (no higher than 9” off the ground) to “camp out” and listen to their favorite songs on Sloan Street. While enjoying the music, visit all of the great local businesses in South Orange—some of which will be running specials on the day of to celebrate.

The no-cover Under Cover Music Fest would not be possible without its generous presenting sponsors Pollock Properties Group of Keller Williams and Mark Murphy’s Music and set sponsors Scalara BrothersEventageCold Stone Creamery and BGR Burgers Grilled Right.

Vanessa Pollock, founder, Pollock Properties Group, shared, “Pollock Properties Group is proud to sponsor Under Cover Music Fest and sees their role in the community as going beyond providing excellent professional real estate service. We have committed ourselves to vigorously supporting quality of life for all local residents by raising and donating money for charities, local schools, foundations, community events and through Achieve Foundation’s Vanessa Pollock Music Initiative.”

The Under Cover Music Fest stage will be located on Sloan Street near South Orange Avenue (facing the direction of the firehouse). Downtown parking will be free thanks to the South Orange Parking Authority. Additional thanks to in-kind sponsors: SOPACThe Fox & Falcon and the General Store Cooperative. To become a sponsor of this event or to learn more about the Under Cover Music Fest, call 973.763.6899 or send an email to mmurphy@sovillagecenter.org. Track the latest news by following @SOVillageCenter on Facebook and Instagram and using #UnderCoverMusicFest

About The Vanessa Pollock Music Initiative

The Vanessa Pollock Music Initiative is in partnership with the Achieve Foundation of South Orange and Maplewood, which is an independent, non-profit 501 (c)(3) organization that raises funds to promote exemplary public education for all students and educators in the community. Donors like the Pollock Properties Group advance Achieve’s objectives significantly with their generous and thoughtful fundraising efforts. Since inception, hundreds of children have been impacted by the Initiative every year, with over 30 private scholarships having been awarded and the funding of over 500 instrument rentals for children who otherwise may not be able to participate in band or orchestra in the SOMA district. Learn more at www.vanessapollockmusicinitiative.com.

About South Orange Village Center Alliance

The South Orange Village Center Alliance (SOVCA) is a non-profit that is dedicated to making downtown South Orange a vibrant place to live, work and enjoy through events, beautification and advocacy for the downtown business district. SOVCA’s mission is to strengthen the vitality of the downtown business district by supporting existing businesses and attracting new ones to improve the Village’s retail mix; raising funds for improvement and public art projects; producing events that complement existing stores and services; maintaining a clean, safe, and pedestrian-friendly downtown; and helping our governing body manage new development while preserving the attractive architectural legacy of the downtown area. The organization is run by an Executive Director and a volunteer board of directors made up of property owners, business owners, residents and other stakeholders. The organization produces key downtown events, including Taste of South Orange Food Stroll, Downtown After Sundown, Under Cover Music Fest, PlayDay, the Farmers Market and more. For more information, visit sovillagecenter.org.