PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Hundreds of people in one Philadelphia neighborhood spent their Saturday enjoying the arts for free.
The 9th annual Allegheny Arts Festival featured paintings, jewelry, live music, and resources for the community in the city's Tioga-Nicetown neighborhood.
Joyce Drayton, the founder of Georgia E. Gregory Interdenominational School of Music, organizes the event in front of her school where she teaches music on 17th and Allegheny streets.
"It's so therapeutic. Music brightens everything we do, it lifts us up when we're down," said Drayton. "It's a time when we showcase all the artists, their talents, their creativity, and just let everybody know about how vibrant our community is."
Drayton has been a musician for 65 years. She believes art is vital to community development.
"Our main interest is to make sure that we provide the arts for any youth or adult who would love to study at no cost," she said.
The festival is held every year on the first Saturday of August. Hundreds of people from the neighborhood come to the block party for games, free food, and live music.
"To come together to express themselves through dance, through music, through playing of instruments, poetry, and of course, the visual arts," said Pastor Gregory Ross of Thankful Baptist Church, which is also on the block.
In addition to arts booths, the fair also had resources for the community like a free COVID-19 vaccine clinic and free blood pressure screenings, services that benefit the community.
"It's extremely important that our members and as well our community understand the importance of prevention of COVID as well as if there are symptoms you're feeling, that you have access to some kits," Ross said.
Drayton and her team say they are proud to provide right in the heart of their neighborhood.
"We didn't have to go downtown, we didn't have to go uptown, we can just come outside the door and hear the beautiful talent," she said.