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Wednesday, September 22, 2021

    Here to Stay: Almost Friday Fest Finishes First Year and Promises More for 2020

    Margaret Hurlberthttps://discovermuscatine.com
    Margaret Hurlbert works as the Editor of Discover Muscatine Newspaper.

    Muscatine Living

    With sun, mild temperatures, and lots to do, the final Almost Friday Fest (AFF) of the 2019 season finished strong. As attendees and organizers alike look back on a successful first year, they eagerly anticipate everything AFF has in store for next year’s events.

    Last week’s AFF proved the biggest one yet. People packed in to listen to back to back performances from fan favorite Joey Peate and Funktastic 5. Families enjoyed the newest addition to AFF’s growing collection of yard games, Nine Square in the Air. A mashup between four square and volleyball, players of all ages enjoyed bumping the ball up and over the Nine Square in the Air grid in furious attempts not to get out. With plenty of refreshments for all, the fourth and final AFF went out in a glorious blaze comparable only to the night’s beautiful September sunset.

    Joey Peate performing for a standing room only crowd at Almost Friday Fest.

    For Chris Boar and Brenda Christensen, members of Keep Muscatine Beautiful and lead organizers of AFF, seeing the event wrap up its first season on such a positive note fills them with pride. “The best part of the event is seeing how much fun people are having on our beautiful riverfront. And, the support from the community is overwhelming,” reflected Boar.

    “What started out as an idea over cocktails has turned into something more than we could have imagined!” added Christensen.

    While AFF has wrapped up for this year, both Boar and Christensen look forward to continuing it next year. “We are committed to 2020 and the event will continue to be the fourth Thursday of the month,” shared Christensen.

    From the first AFF in June, visitors have noticed the event improve with new activities and vendors each month. As they plan for AFF next year, Boar and Christensen already have ideas for keeping each event fresh and engaging. By popular demand, the pair will add an additional AFF, with the first one taking place in May and continuing each month through September. They also have plans for other improvements too, which they will reveal next year. “We will be working all winter long on surprises for next year,” hinted Boar.

    In order to make all these surprises realities, Keep Muscatine Beautiful will hold several fundraisers this fall and winter for AFF. Boar and Christensen encourage the community to come out to these events to make sure AFF continues to grow and thrive as one of Muscatine’s favorite events.

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