Cecile McLorin Salvant performs at McCarter.

Music festivals, opera, professional theater, art exhibitions featuring a major American master and regionally connected innovator, jazz performances, a concert of new symphonic music, hip hop, a 24-hour cultural festival, and much more shows that our region is the state’s epicenter for the arts.

And with something for everyone’s taste and bank account — including many free events — it’s time to get formal or funky and take advantage of our Jersey fresh culture.

The Princeton Festival returns June 7 for its 15th season of opening the region’s summer with high quality music, opera, musical theater, discussions, and more.

Opening the month-long festival of eight events and 22 performances is the Concordia Chamber Players performing works by Beethoven, Mendelssohn, and Kodaly. The presentation is at the Princeton Theological Society’s Miller Chapel, 64 Mercer Street, 7:30 p.m. $15 to $45.

This year’s festival headliner event is contemporary American composer John Adams’ opera “Nixon in China.” Cited by the Guardian newspaper during the opera’s 1987 premiere as “a genuinely contemporary opera” featuring a score that “is warm, constantly varied, and often startlingly beautiful,” the work uses famed anti-communist U.S. President Richard Nixon’s groundbreaking visit to communist China as a meditation on both the external and internal lives of the real-life participants. That includes the power couples Richard and Patricia Nixon and Chairman Mao and Jiang Qing (aka Madam Mao), U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, and People’s Republic of China Premier Zhou Enlai.

Classically trained actor and baritone Sean Anderson takes on the role of Nixon with soprano Teresa Castillo tackling the demanding role of Madame Mao. Festival director Richard Tang Yuk conducts. (June 23 and 30). Tickets are $45 to $150 (with half-price tickets for students).

Complementing the opera is the Broadway musical production of “She Loves Me.” A 1964 romantic comedy by “Fiddler on the Roof” musical-writers Jerry Bock (music) and Sheldon Harnick (lyrics) and a book by Joe Masteroff (Cabaret), the show is based on a 1937 play that had in turn served as the basis of three films: the 1940 “Shop Around the Corner” with James Steward, the 1947 Judy Garland vehicle “The Good Old Summertime,” and “You’ve Got Mail” in 1998. Catch one of the 13 performances set from June 8 through 30. $55 to $85.

Other events include the final round of the festival’s annual piano competition, June 9; a performance by Grammy-nominated jazz vocalist Jazzmeia Horn, June 16; internationally known pianist Rachel Cheung presenting music by Chopin, Ravel, and Schubert, June 22; award-winning contemporary Chinese poet Xue Di presenting works in Chinese and English, June 23; the Princeton Festival Baroque Orchestra presenting a chamber performance, June 22, and a full orchestra concert using period instruments, June 26; and a choral music concert featuring music by J.S. Bach and Antonio Vivaldi and accompanied by the Baroque Orchestra, June 30. Ticket prices and venues vary.

Also on the program are nonmusical and free events that include roundtable discussions featuring performers and directors of the opera and musical, a reading of contemporary Chinese poetry, and two workshops: one on opera and another, limited to high school students, on performing in musicals.

609-258-2787 or www.princetonfestival.org.

McCarter Theater’s Jazz in June series returns on Friday, June 7, with Grammy winning vocalist Cecile McLorin Salvant accompanied by pianist Fred Hersch. The Friday and Saturday night schedule continues with bassist and composer Christian McBride accompanied by pianist Emmet Cohen and guitarist Dan Wilson, June 8; the Bill Frisell Trio, with guitarist Frisell, bassist Tony Sherr, and drummer Kenny Wollensen, June 14.

Bill Charlap Trio, featuring Grammy-nominated pianist Charlap, bassist Peter Washington, and drummer Kenny Washington (no relation), June 15; and the Vijay Iyer Sextet, featuring pianist and MacArthur Award fellow Iyer, cornetist Graham Haynes, saxophonists Mark Shim and Steve Lehman, bassist Stephen Crump, and drummer Tyshawn Sorey, June 22. $25 to $70.

609-258-2787 or www.mccarter.org.

The Princeton University Summer Chamber Concerts returns with a four-part series of free events at Princeton University’s Richardson Auditorium.

First up is the Horszowski Piano Trio, based in New York City and artists-in-residence at the Longy School of Music of Bard College. Trio members are violinists Jesse Mills, pianist Rieko Aizawa, and cellist Raman Ramakrishnan. They perform on Thursday, June 20, 7:30 p.m.

Then look for the PUBLIQuartet, the New York City connected group featuring violinists Curtis Stewart and Jannina Norpoth, violist Nick Rerel, and cellist Amanda Gookin, Thursday, June 27; NY Brass Arts Trio with trumpeter Joe Burgstaller, French hornist David Jolly, and trombonist Haim Avitsu, Tuesday, July 2; and the Rolston String Quarter, the Canadian musical group that includes violinists Luri Lee and Emily Druspe, violist Hezekia Leung, and cellist Jonathan Lo. Friday, July 12. All performances at 7:30 p.m.


The New Jersey Symphony Orchestra’s Edward T. Cone Composition Institute will resume its annual presence on the Princeton University Campus from July 15 through 20.

Dedicated to the creation of new music, the Institute provides the occasion for composers selected through an application process to collaborate with the orchestra for a concert presentation on Saturday, July 20, 8 p.m., at the university’s Richardson Auditorium.

Guest conductor Cristian Macelaru leads the program featuring Los Angeles composer Dan Caputo’s “Liminal”; Los Angeles-based Patrick O’Malley’s “Rest and Restless”; West New York, New Jersey, composer Ivan Enrique Rodriguez’s “A Metaphor for Power”; Princeton’s Bora Yoon’s “The Encyclopedia of Winds”; and Princeton composer and institute director Steve Mackey’s “Portals, Scenes, and Celebrations.” Tickets are $10 to $15.


Princeton University Carillon’s 27th season of free Sunday, 1 p.m. concerts returns with a new program called “When Music Meets the Sky!” The schedule featuring international and national masters performing on the tower-high 67-bell instrument are as follows: Liesbeth Janssens, Belgium, July 7; The Treblemakers — Duet Carillonneurs Lisa Lonie, Princeton University and Janet Tebbel, Philadelphia, July 14; Gijsbert Kok, the Netherlands, July 21; Jan Verheyen, Belgium, July 28; Lisa Lonie, August 4; Margaret Pan, Massachusetts, August 11; Janet Tebbel, August 18; Dan Kehoe, Massachusetts, August 25; and Robin Austin, Pennsylvania, September 1.

Listeners are invited to set up lawn chairs or picnics on the grounds outside Princeton University Graduate School’s Cleveland Tower, 88 College Road West, or just listen anywhere within a mile radius.

609-258-7989 or www.princeton.edu.

Westminster Choir College’s annual CoOPERAtive returns for its three-week intensive program for opera performers and free programs for the public.

The 2019 schedule is as follows. All performances start at 7:30 p.m.

Brooklyn, NY – November 30, 2016 – Jazzmeia Horn.
credit: Jacob Blickenstaff

Master classes at the Robert L. Annis Playhouse: Susan Ashbaker, director of Westminster Opera Theater and artistic director for Tri-Cities Opera, Sunday, June 30; opera and theater director David Paul, Monday, July 1; Kathleen Kelly, opera coach, conductor, and writer, Monday, July 8; mezzo soprano and CoOPERAtive co-director Laura Brooks Rice, Monday, July 15;

Operatic arias concerts in Bristol Chapel: Wednesdays and Fridays, July 3 through 19.

Other concerts in Bristol Chapel: American Song Concert, Saturday, July 6; CoOPERAtive Alumni Recital with Anne Marie Stanley, mezzo-soprano, and James Sparks, piano, Thursday, July 11; French Melodie Concert, Saturday, July 13; and Liderabend, Thursday, July 18.

Westminster Choir College, 101 Walnut Lane, Princeton. 609-921-2663. www.rider.edu/events.


The Bucks County Playhouse is capitalizing on its history and calling upcoming series the 80th anniversary season. That’s because the theater’s current team of producers — Robyn Goodman, Alexander Fraser, and Josh Fiedler — have successfully reclaimed the playhouse’s glory day reputation of producing new works and revivals featuring solid professionals.

The season is already in action with “Dial ‘M’ For Murder.” Best known as the Alfred Hitchcock thriller, the play by former Princeton resident Frederick Knox follows a man’s plan to orchestrate the perfect murder of his wife. Off-Broadway and regional theater director Mike Donahue is at the helm. Through June 15.

“Mamma Mia!” hits the boards next. The well known stage show tuned to the songs of the pop music group Abba is under the direction of Broadway performer John Tartaglia, the original star of the “Avenue Q.” He is joined by choreographer and Broadway dancer Shannon Lewis. The producers are calling it the “largest musical produced at the historic venue since reopening in 2012.” June 28 through August 3.

Then look for “Always … Patsy Cline,” a musical focusing on the friendship between the country music icon and a Texas housewife. Noted TV performer and past BCP performer Sally Struthers returns for the show. August 9 through September 7.

Bucks County Playhouse, 70 South Main Street, New Hope, Pennsylvania. $65 to $70. 215-862-2121 or www.bcptheater.org.

Bristol Riverside Theater resumes its annual Summer Music Fest series, starting with “Love is Here To Stay,” a revue featuring pop standards from the early 20th century including music by George Gershwin, Fats Waller, Jule Styne, and more. June 13 through 23.

Then look for “Woodstock at 50: A Celebration,” a 1960s songbook featuring works made famous by Janis Joplin, Joe Cocker, Carlos Santana. July 18 through 28.

And finally there’s “Broadway Summer Spectacular,” an evening of the best of Broadway. August 15 through 25.

Bristol Riverside Theater, 120 Radcliffe Street, Bristol, Pennsylvania. $10 to $47. 215-785-0100 or www.brtstage.org

Music Mountain Theater in Lambertville, built on the grounds of the legendary Lambertville Music Circus, is offering a series of community productions.

“The Full Monty” is Terrence McNally and David Yazbek’s musical about six hard-luck unemployed steelworkers who transform themselves into a popular male stripping group. June 7 to 23.

“South Pacific,” Rodgers and Hammerstein’s take on James Michener’s Pulitzer Prize-winning “Tales of the South Pacific,” has regional roots. Oscar Hammerstein and Michener were Bucks County residents. And co-writer Joshua Logan is Princeton Class of 1931. June 28 through July 14.

“Wait Until Dark” is another Frederick Knox thriller about a woman in peril. This time she is blind and has to confront two ruthless criminals who arrive at her home to claim a secret stash of drugs. Off-Broadstreet Theater founder and director Robert Thicke directs. July 19 through 28.

“The Will Rogers Follies,” the life and wit of American humorist Will Rogers told in a series of production numbers featuring the music of veteran musical composer Cy Coleman and lyricists Betty Comden and Adolph Green. August 2 through 18.

And “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee,” noted Broadway composer William Finn and writer Rachel Sheinkin’s popular and touching stage work focusing on the hopes and fears of several kids competing in the annual contest. August 23 through September 1.

Music Mountain Theater, 1483 Route 179, Lambertville. $23 to $25. www.musicmountaintheatre.org.

Kelsey Theater presents ‘The 25th Annual Putnam Spelling Bee.’

Kelsey Theater at Mercer County Community College is no slouch with summer community productions and is offering weekend productions ranging from Broadway to the Bard.

“The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee” is presented by Maurer Productions OnStage. June 7 through 16.

“Macbeth,” Shakespeare’s famous and supernatural-laden riff on the ancient Scottish king’s bloody trail to the throne, is Shakespeare ’70’s latest in a series of classic productions. June 21 through 30.

“Crazy For You,” Broadway hit writer — and frequently McCarter Theater presence — Ken Ludwig’s Gershwin-infused musical comedy, comes to the stage via M & M Stage Productions. July 12 through 21.

“Tom Sawyer” is the Yardley Players’ presentation of Mark Twain’s classic adventure story of a boy caught between “respectable society” and his own rambunctious and irrepressible spirit. July 26 through August 4.

Kelsey Theater, Mercer County Community College, 1200 Old Trenton Road, West Windsor. $14 to $20. 609-570-3333 or www.kelseyatmccc.org.

The Actors’ Net in Morrisville has two summer offerings: “Exit the King,” Eugene Ionesco’s absurdist exploration of ego and morality, is currently running. Through June 16.

And Shakespeare’s “A Winter Tale” cools audiences. July 12 through 28.

Actors’ Net Theater, 635 North Delmorr Avenue, Morrisville, Pennsylvania. $10 to $20. www.actorsnetbucks.org/tickets.htm.

Hopewell Theater, recently reinvented as a concert and entertainment venue, is offering a summer theater series of three one-night stops.

It starts with “Writer’s Block,” billed as “an absurd comedy with lofty ambitions and a madcap romp through the quirky but tortured mind of writer plagued by the specter that deep down he is shallow.” The writer is Christopher Canaan, television writer and Bucks County Playhouse writing instructor. Saturday, June 8.

It’s followed by “My Mother, The Astronaut,” the Philadelphia-based Lantern Theater Company production about a girl whose imagination blasts off when she visits her astronaut mom on Take Your Child to Work Day. Saturday, July 13.

And “The Actual Dance — One Man Show” is the autobiographical account of a husband watching his wife dealing with breast cancer. The work, written and performed by Samuel A. Simon with original music, “takes the audience on an emotional but uplifting journey that rewards them with an unexpected happy ending, and a universal, life-affirming lesson of hope and faith,” producers say. Saturday, August 10.

Hopewell Theater, 5 South Greenwood Avenue, Hopewell. $20 to $34. www.hopewelltheater.com.

Princeton Summer Theater — the semi-professional summer stock theater on the Princeton University campus — celebrates its 50th anniversary with four productions and the premiere of a new work for children. Adult shows run Thursdays through Sundays.

The opener is “Falsettos,” William Finn and James Lapine’s Tony Award-winning musical look at the variety of American families. June 20 to 30.

It’s followed by: Ira Levin’s 1978 complex thriller “Deathtrap.” July 4 through 21.

Next up is “A Midsummer’s Night Dream,” Shakespeare’s comedy of love, human folly, and mischievous spirits. July 25 to August 4.

And contemporary American playwright Suzan-Lori Parks’ 2002 Pulitzer Prize winning work “Topdog/Underdog” touches on work, race, and masculinity in America. August 8 through 18.

“Puck’s Midsummer Mischief” is the new production for young audiences, 11 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, from July 5 through August 3.

Princeton Summer Theater, Hamilton-Murray Theater, Princeton University, $24.50 to $29.50. 732-997-0205 or www.princetonsummertheater.org.


Morven Museum & Garden in Princeton is all about the Boys of Summer with its new exhibition “New Jersey Baseball: From the Cradle to the Major Leagues, 1855–1915.” As coordinators put it, the exhibit tells “the story of the state’s important role in the history of early organized baseball through artifacts, text, and images” and looks at the first New Jersey baseball clubs, the differences between 19th-century and 21st-century baseball, and the experiences of African-Americans and women. It opens with a free reception, Thursday, June 6, from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Through October 27.

There are also related public programs: “Talking Baseball with Bob Ryan & Art Shamsky,” where the 1969 Mets World Series winning baseball star Shamsky and ESPN’s “The Sports Reporters” celebrity journalist Bob Ryan talk baseball with New Jersey sportswriter Bill Glovin, Thursday, June 13, 7:30 p.m. $15 to $20. “Inside Early New Jersey Base Ball” with historian and exhibition curator John Zinn; Saturday, June 15, 2 p.m., $10 to $15. Vintage Baseball Movie, Friday, June 21, 6:30 p.m., $15 per family. And a Vintage Baseball Game; Saturday, June 22, noon, free.

Morven Museum, 55 Stockton Street, Princeton. Wednesday through Sunday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. $8 to $10. 609-924-8144 or www.morven.org.

The New Jersey State Museum’s “Many Inspired Steps” commemorates the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing that took place on July 21, 1969.

Currently on view through November 10, the exhibition uses a variety of objects and images to examine the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union, the pioneers of space travel — including New Jersey born astronaut and Apollo 11 member Buzz Aldrin — and other state connections to both the landing and the space program.

The voyage to the moon is also explored by the new planetarium show “CapCOM Go!,” a documentary showcasing highlights of the Apollo program and the engineering and design that made space travel possible. Show times are weekends at 3 p.m., and 1:30 p.m. weekdays, July 5 through August 30. $5 to $7.

New Jersey State Museum, 205 West State Street, Trenton. Tuesdays through Sundays, 9 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. Free; donations requested. 609-292-5420 or www.statemuseumnj.gov.

Princeton University Art Museum’s “Helen Frankenthaler Prints: Seven Types of Ambiguity” commemorates the career of one of the 20th century’s most innovative and prolific abstract artists and printmakers. She lived from 1928 to 2011.

The title for the exhibition comes from Frankenthaler’s large scale stain-painting of the same name — in turn borrowed from the title of the literary critic William Empson’s essay examining how the formal structure of language could be charged so any verbal nuance, however slight, gives room for alternative reactions to the same piece of language and talking about the accumulation of cultural associations used by the creator.

The exhibition features more than 50 prints — including a selection donated to the museum by the Helen Frankenthaler Foundation — and spans five decades of Frankenthaler’s career, reflecting her use of a dozen printmaking processes.

It will also include works by artists whose printmaking inspired Frankenthaler’s creative choices, including 19th-century French artist Edgar Degas, 18th-century Japanese artist Utagawa Hiroshige I, and 20th-century Mexican artist Rufino Tamayo. June 29 through October 20.

Princeton University Art Museum. Princeton campus. Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Thursdays, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Free. 609-258-3788 or artmuseum.princeton.edu.

The Zimmerli Art Museum at Rutgers will exhibit “Mister Deviant, Comrade Degenerate: Selected Works by Yevgeniy Fiks.”

The exhibition uses nine works mixing still photographs and multimedia installations to examine the “instrumentalization of homophobia, anti-liberalism, and anti-modernism as tools of propaganda and ideology in both the United States and the Soviet Union during the Cold War. It explores the era’s persecution of various nonconformist groups on both sides of the ideological divide, including political dissidents, queers, and avant-garde artists,” according to museum promotional materials.

The Soviet Union-born Fiks, 47, lives in New York and creates art works and installations that deal with memory, repression, and the political left in both Russia and the United States. He exhibits internationally and is also a visual arts professor at Mercer County Community College. June 15 through July 31.

Zimmerli Museum, 71 Hamilton Street, New Brunswick. Tuesdays through Fridays, 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays, noon to 5 p.m., first Tuesdays, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Free. 848-932-7237 or www.zimmerli.rutgers.edu.

The Trenton City Museum will host exhibitions by several prominent regional artists. That includes artist and longtime Times of Trenton visual arts reporter Janet Purcell and nationally known Trenton artist Mel Leipzig. July 13 through September 8.

Currently on view is the annual Ellarslie Open, featuring 125 works that coordinators say show “the depth and breadth of artistic talent in the Delaware Valley region.” Through July 7.

Trenton City Museum at Ellarslie, Cadwalader Park, Trenton. Wednesday through Saturday, noon to 4 p.m., Sunday 1 to 4 p.m. Free. 609-989-3632 or www.ellarslie.org.

Popular Music

Some Assembly Required performs in Palmer Square.

The Arts Council of Princeton’s free Thursday night Summer Courtyard Concerts series at the Princeton Shopping Center returns on June 27, 6 to 8 p.m., with a performance by the region’s noted American brass band, the Blawenburg Band.

The hits keep coming as follows: country music with the regional Big Country and the Finger Pick’n Good Band, July 4; Princeton rock and soul singer Essie, July 11; New York City’s The Blue Meanies’ Beatles Tribute, July 18; Spanish music and flamenco dancing with New Jersey’s Alborada Spanish Dance Theater, July 25;

New Jersey indie singer/songwriter Lauren Marsh, August 1; Motown and funk music with central New Jersey’s T.S. Project, August 8; Princeton School of Rock performing classic rock, August 15; New York based Afro-Latin jazz singer Taina Asili, August 22; and Trenton area’s Amazing Grace and the Grace Little Band performing rhythm and blues and more, August 29.

Arts Council of Princeton, Princeton Shopping Center, 301 North Harrison Street, Princeton. Free. www.artscouncilofprinceton.org or 609-924-8777.

Palmer Square in Princeton presents free Saturday concerts on the green:

Strictly 60’s from Jackson, New Jersey, July 6, noon to 2 p.m.; JB Rocks, from Ewing, July 13, noon to 2 p.m.; Princeton’s Some Assembly Required, July 20, 1 to 3 p.m.; Big Valley Bluegrass from Leigh Valley, July 27, noon to 2 p.m.;

Kindred Spirit, based in Mercer County, August 3, noon to 2 p.m.; Strictly 60s, August 10, noon to 2 p.m.; Ewing based SunDog, August 17, noon to 2 p.m.; Some Assembly Required, August 24, 1 to 3 p.m.; and Latin music with David Alastre and Latineo, August 31, noon to 2 p.m.


The Mercer County Park Summer Concert Series at the Festival Grounds in West Windsor starts up on Saturday, June 22, with a pop music night featuring Georgia group Kazual and Nashville performer Krigare.

The music continues with Groove & Blues Night, featuring Philadelphia funk band Swift Technique and the Kelly Bell Band from Baltimore, Saturday, July 20; Hip Hop/R& B Night, Saturday, July 27; jazz night with Philadelphia trombonist Jeff Bradshaw and others, Saturday, August 3; country night, featuring Nashville performers Tucker Beathard and Conor Clemmons, Friday, August 9. Performances are 6 to 10 p.m.

On Saturday, August 18, is a Woodstock Tribute featuring the New York Jimi Hendrix tribute band Kiss the Sky and the Carole King inspired Home Again, 2 to 6 p.m.

Mercer County Park, West Windsor. $5 to $20. www.mercercountyparks.org.

The Levitt AMP Trenton Music Series returns to Mill Hill Park for a weekly free series of musical events featuring national and regional artists. Now in its fifth summer, the 2019 series starts on Thursday, June 27, 5 to 8 p.m., with the New Orleans soul rock trio The Nth Power.

The schedule continues as follows:

New Orleans’ Shamarr Allen & The Underdogs present their big band hip-hop jazz, with Lancaster’s Big Boy Brass jazz, July 11; Asbury Park R&B group Des & the Swagmatics and the Trenton-based Renaissance Jazz Band, July 18; Vermont indie-soul performers Dwight & Nicole with New Jersey rock band HEVEE LEVEE, July 25;

New York City’s PJ Rasmussen & The Boardwalk Jazz with Princeton jazz performer Tom Tallitsch, August 1; Austin, Texas, R&B artist Tameca Jones and Jersey City soul singer Bo Mason, August 8; Nationally recognized Trenton born musician Edwin Labron performs salsa music with Trenton Latin folk artist Gabriel Munoz, August 15;

California Afro-Latin group La Misa Negra performs Afro-Latin music and Philadelphia Latin fusion group Interminable, August 22; Nashville’s soul-pop group The New Respects and Asbury Park indie rock group the Vaughns, August 29;

And the series concludes with Arkansas-raised Rev. Sekou & the Freedom Fighters playing blues-Americana with Camden/Philadelphia soul musician Kingsley Ibeneche, September 5.

Levitt AMP Trenton Music Series, Mill Hill Park, Front and Broad Streets, Trenton. concerts.levittamp.org/trenton.

Art Festivals

Art All Night, Trenton’s 24-hour arts event, returns to Roebling Wire Works Building from 3 p.m., Saturday, June 15, to 3 p.m., Sunday, June 16, with a massive art exhibition and a marathon of performances featuring some of the region’s most prominent musicians and groups. This year’s organizers are all about continuing the beloved community project despite last year’s gun fight between two feuding visitors. “This year’s Art All Night will be bigger and better than ever. I’ve been meeting regularly with event organizers, our police and fire departments, and state law enforcement to adapt our security measures and make sure the event this year is safe and fun for all,” said Trenton Mayor Reed Gusciora in a statement. “This is a celebration of local art and culture, and we are confident that Art All Night will show the best of what Trenton has to offer. I will be there, and I encourage visitors to come out and celebrate with us.”

Art All Night, Historic Roebling Wire Works, 675 South Clinton Avenue, Trenton. Free. www.artallnighttrenton.org

The Jersey Fresh Jam, New Jersey’s premiere Hip Hop festival, returns to TerraCycle Inc in Trenton on Saturday, August 17, from noon to 6 p.m.

From humble beginnings — a wall, paint, some beer, and a boom box — the annual August event was born in 2005 and now attracts scores of street artists, musicians, vendors, and art lovers with a taste for the fresh. A partnership formed by Trenton street artist Leon Rainbow and graffiti-loving TerraCycle founder Tom Szaky, the Jam attracts regional, East Coast, and even national and international graffiti artists and musicians. The name of the event was inspired by the state’s Jersey Fresh produce campaign and a desire to make it an accessible and family-friendly event.

The Jersey Fresh Jam, TerraCycle Complex, 121 New York Avenue, Trenton. Free. www.jerseyfreshjam.com.

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