Funk Parade down U Street

By now, you’ve probably heard of Funk Parade. If you haven’t you must be new to DC, in which case – WELCOME.

Last year was the first ever Funk Parade and it’s already cemented itself as the stuff of legends. Lifelong residents and DC transplants took to the streets in celebration of song and dance. Jazz, Funk, DC’s own Go-Go, Samba, Latin – you name it and was live and in your face. We’re probably a bit biased but we’d like to think that DC’s Funk Parade gives Mardi Gras a new rival.

(Mind you – there were no bare breasts or bar fights, so if that’s your main thing – we’ll just have to see you in in the Lou.)

But seriously, Funk Parade was awesome. Anyone that didn’t make it was regretting it for days. It was all the city talked about.

More people came out than we could have ever anticipated (30,000) and the spontaneity of the community was in full fashion. People had their own parties within the party – finding unique ways to celebrate the rich musical history of DC. And this year, we’re doing it again!

When we say – we – we should probably clarify because a few of you that went to Funk Parade are probably thinking, “Huh?! but Funk Parade wasn’t on 15th & U Street.” And you’d be right.

As much we pouted about it (before and after the parade) Funk Parade didn’t make it’s way down to U Street. The proverbial “WE” that we keep referring to are the shops on the block that participated in the parade through pop-up shops (Lettie Gooch) and who created the website (BRINK).

But this year, WE do want to participate. WE as in allllllll of us on U Street. How can you celebrate music and funk – and jazz – and dance – and DC without U Street? U just can’t. This is home to Black Broadway, baby. Everyone in the city seems to believe that – except for city officials of course.

Last year, the Funk Parade Committee had a hell of a time trying to get the city to agree to shutdown U Street and we sort of understood it.

It was the first parade, there was no real way of knowing just how successful it would be or how supportive vendors and the community would be. But this year – that’s just simply not the case. We know that’ve got the mojo to throw a great parade, but for this thing to happen it’s going to take a lot of work.

It’s not going to take just from the planning committee, or the musicians or the politicians but from YOU. We need your help.

By signing a petition to the city, we have a real chance of bringing the parade to U Street. Knowing that the residents of DC have Funk Parade’s back, will make all the difference.

Here’s the link to the petition: https://www.change.org/p/ask-the-d-c-government-to-close-u-street-for-the-funk-parade

We hope U’ll help us get funky.







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