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The Freeman Arts Pavilion Held Its Arts & Jazz Festival in Delaware

Photo courtesy of Freeman Arts Pavilion

Formerly known as the Freeman Stage at Bayside, this familiar venue returned with a new name and brought back a popular festival.

After a hiatus due to the pandemic, the Arts & Jazz Festival returned to the Freeman Arts Pavilion on Saturday, September 18. The free fall event, which runs from 10 a.m. to about 5 p.m., was held on the property’s verdant lawn.

The Selbyville performing arts venue was formerly known as the Freeman Stage at Bayside. What’s with the new name? A big ambition, that’s what. Plans call for a new facility that will seat 4,000 patrons, 1,100 of whom will sit under a cover.

The Freeman Arts Pavilion is part of the Joshua M. Freeman Foundation, a 501(c)3 nonprofit founded in 2007 to honor Josh Freeman, former chair of the Carl M. Freeman Companies. Freeman died suddenly in 2006.

Patti Grimes, who has been with the foundation from the start, is the executive director of the Joshua M. Freeman Foundation and the Carl M. Freeman Foundation. Here, she answers frequently asked questions about the event prior to its occurance.

The Arts & Jazz Festival is now a tradition in the shoulder season. When did it start?

This season will be the 13th annual Arts & Jazz Festival. It has been a part of every season at Freeman Arts Pavilion since our inception—except for 2020 due to COVID-19. It is a wonderful celebration of the arts and artistic expression.

How many artists will be at the event?

We typically have about 20 to 25 artists participate, and they work in a wide variety of mediums, from painting to photography to structures to jewelry. Artists apply online through the event listing on our website, freemanarts.org.


The Arts & Jazz Festival, featuring live music and works by various artists, returns to the Freeman Arts Pavilion this month./Photo courtesy of Freeman Arts Pavilion

How many musicians will perform?

We usually have three performers who play throughout the day. Previous acts included the Joe Baione Sextet, local musician Melissa Aldana, The Lao Tizer Band, and Jane Bunnett and Maqueque.

Do you feature a particular genre of jazz or acts that are a specific size?

That is the great thing about jazz—it’s such an expansive genre. We want to offer a diversity in jazz artists, from the type of jazz to the band’s size.

How many people attend?

We typically welcome about 1,000 patrons throughout the day. This event is laid-back and easygoing. Patrons can enjoy a day of jazz while perusing local artists. It is the perfect blend of both the visual and performing arts.

Can visitors buy food and beverages?

Like any event at Freeman Arts Pavilion, concessions will be available for all to enjoy. Our Canteen will be open to offer food and an assortment of beverages, and we may also have one of the local food trucks we partner with throughout the season as additional dining choices as well.

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