Bring on the bands! After the decision was made to cancel the Greentree Festival, the Kirkwood Parks Department created the idea for Party on Your Porch. In his dual role as Head of Entertainment for the Greentree Festival and Chairman of the "Fun Committee," Bob Mosby decided to add an element of fun to preserve the Festival Weekend tradition.
"I thought, from a music perspective, wouldn't it be fun if we put some bands on trucks and trailers played for people at their party on the porch." Bob shared his idea with Mark Petty, Director of Kirkwood Electric. "I couldn't believe it," exclaimed Bob. "Mark immediately offered to sponsor the entire event."
Bob spent the next few months talking with bands and working out the details with the City of Kirkwood. The city approved Bob's idea two and a half weeks before the Party on Your Porch event. Bob had to work fast. Trucks and trailers were needed to transport the eight bands around town. "I asked business friends if they would sponsor a band, which meant providing a truck, trailer, driver, and co-pilot." Local businesses were happy to help.
Logistics proved to be tricky. "We divided the city of Kirkwood into four sections and had two bands in each section. Our theory was that everyone would see two bands." Bob regrets that they were not able to reach everyone's porch. A committee has been formed to improve upon next year's Party on Your Porch. "When it was all said and done, everyone involved said they can't wait to do it again next year."
It was an exciting day for fans and the bands. "The amount of anticipation as we rode into neighborhoods was heartwarming. Every time we rolled up, you could feel the joy and the energy. The bands have been unable to play for months, so playing for 20 people in a front yard was fun. Even the police escorts had a terrific time."
Bob readily acknowledges the event would not have been possible without key members of the community coming together. "Mark Petty's sponsorship allowed us to secure the police escorts for the bands. We also could not have done it without the businesses that sponsored the bands. And we couldn't have done it without the great bands." Everyone has eagerly offered to be a part of it again next year. In a year of uncertainty, Bob certainly appears to have created a wonderful new legacy for our community.
"We developed the idea of bringing bands to the neighborhoods because we wanted to preserve the Greentree Festival tradition in these non-traditional times. The enthusiasm was better than I could have ever imagined. It was beyond my wildest expectations."