What to know about the Overtown Music and Arts Festival in Miami

Everything you need to know about the lineup, food and culture of the Overtown Music and Arts Festival

Photograph: Phillip Pessar

The Overtown Music and Arts Festival is an annual outdoor concert and festival taking place in the Miami neighborhood of Overtown, which is just a quick walk or Metromover trip from some of the best Downtown Miami clubs. This year, the event will feature performances from headliners like Ginuwine, Musiq Soulchild, Vivian Green, Estelle and Jon B. Attendees can also expect plenty of food, art and family-friendly games and entertainment. 

When is the Overtown Music and Arts Festival? July 14, 2018, from 11am to 7pm.

Where is the Overtown Music and Arts Festival? At NW 2nd and NW 3rd Avenues between 8th and 10th Streets.

How much are tickets to the Overtown Music and Arts Festival? The event is free and open to all ages.

Overtown Music and Arts Festival in Miami

Everything you need to know about the Overtown Music and Arts Festival
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Everything you need to know about the Overtown Music and Arts Festival

You can’t discuss the history of Miami without taking a detour into Overtown. The neighborhood, one of Miami's oldest, was created in the early 1900s for Miami’s black population, who were allowed limited—if any—access to other parts of the city. Performers like Cab Calloway, Nat King Cole, Ella Fitzgerald and Sammy Davis Jr. often stayed in Overtown while performing in Miami, mainly because it was the only place they were legally allowed to sleep at night. Consequently, it became the city’s most exciting cultural hotspot. It’s this sort of history that was in the mind of Michael Gardner when he decided to take over the Overtown Music and Arts Festival in 2014. Gardner and his company, Headliner Market Group, were used to throwing more lavish affairs (like the star-packed LIV on Sunday) but something about this event intrigued him. “It’s historical,” Gardner says, “and it was an opportunity to give back to the community.” Since then, Gardner has made a point to bolster the “music” part of the festival, attracting international names to the lineup such as CeeLo Green and Tito Puente Jr. This year, he’s beyond psyched to announce the first wave of headliners: Ginuwine, Musiq Soulchild, Vivian Green, Estelle and Jon B. “I think we can be big as Calle Ocho,” Gardner says, referring to the similar and absolutely massive street festival that takes over Little Havana every March. “Our festival is also a street festival and”—his favorite part—“it’s free.” There’s a lot more to the

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