By Ellie Muraca
Monday, October 2, 2014
Charlottesville is well known for its artful citizens who dwell in the downtown area, taking part in small, local music festivals or art gallery showings. These types of events have hosted an average of 3,000 attendants in the past. However, over 6,000 C’ville citizens from all over the area attended the Tom Tom block party late Friday night.
Established in 2012, the Tom Tom Founders Festival was created to widen the acknowledgment of Charlottesville’s most creative innovators. From art to medicine, Tom Tom recognizes everyone and anyone who has contributed to Charlottesvilles unique qualities. Proceeds from these events create grants for the production and display of public art created by local residents.
Hosted in front of the McGuffey Art Center, the block party this year acted as a last hurrah for warm weather and outdoor concerts. According to the Charlottesville Newsplex, the event held a record breaking 6,085 attendants, nearly tripling the amount of people who took part in 2013 Tom Tom events. The event was marked appropriate for all ages, so families brought their children to dance in front of the live band and participate in the corn hole competition. This event took place without a charged admission, and included an array of local food trucks, brews, and live music.
The event additionally highlighted the 18 Founders of the Founding Cville Project. Each of these founders are featured on lamp post banners along the Downtown Mall for the month of September. The project features innovators from Sara Clayborne, co-founder of Charlottesville Ballet, to Dr. Robin Felder, the founder of Global Cell Solutions. An awards ceremony was held at the event for these successful innovators.
In order to create even more local outreach, the event staff was complete with UVA student volunteers, including Greek Organizations AEPi and AXO.
“We are proud that Tom Tom continues developing into an event that brings together so many members of our community around themes of creativity and innovation,” said Festival Director Paul Beyer in an interview with the Charlottesville Newsplex on September 29th.
The Tom Tom festival plans to host their next event April 15th-29th of 2015.