The numbers are in, and this past Thursday’s installment of Alive After Five — Patchogue’s third of the season — attracted an estimated 20,000 people to the downtown.
That’s double the 10,000 estimated for each of the year’s first two installments of the street fest. The crowd counts are conducted by the event’s security detail.
The third fest was themed a Celebration of Women in the Arts, with the night being dedicated to the memory of Karen Ferb, a Patchogue Arts Council co-founder who died on Oct. 6.
“What a beautiful night powered by amazing women artists and performers,” said David Kennedy, the executive director of the Greater Patchogue Chamber of Commerce, which organizes the festivals. “We had perfect weather and an amazing crowd.
“It was one of our best Alive After Fives, for sure.”
Alive After Five committee chair Jacqueline Routh said the night was actually entitled “A Celebration of Women in Arts, Remembering Karen Ferb,” with a special ceremony at Capital One plaza to honor her legacy.
Three other women were also recognized.
Those were Beth Giacummo, the Art Council’s first-ever executive director (who’s also the current director); Jessica “Ratgrrl” Valentin, the owner of Muñeca Arthouse, which opened last year in Patchogue; and Marian Russo, a Beautification Committee member and the village’s Community Development Agency executive director.
Russo has done much in her capacity as a village official and grant writer to secure grant funding for several arts-related projects over the years.
To support last Thursday’s theme, many of the bands featured female lead singers, the Patchogue-Medford Library set up activities for kids through which they learned about famous female artists, and many female artists were invited to display their work at Capital One Plaza, near the art stage.
Routh took over this year as the event’s chairperson.
“It was important for me to reimagine what this event is,” she said. “And attendance might be down overall but it’s a better experience; it has a better air to it. There’s been a shift in vibe for people, and it would be cool to see some old faces come down again.”
The summer’s last Alive After Five, which will celebrate cultural diversity, happens Aug. 8 — with an Aug. 22 rain date. Each event runs from 5 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
Cheat Sheet: Your 2019 guide to Alive After Five
Routh said the committee is still in the process of figure out which local people to honor at the fourth and last Alive After Five of summer.
Top: Looking out from RHUM at the start of the 3rd Alive After Five. (file)