Shout Out Saugerties began as an off-shoot of the activist group Indivisible, local chapters of which sprung up across the country after the 2016 election. “It started in a political moment,” says organizer Isabel Soffer. “We wanted to do something cultural, to bring people together, to create a community through the arts.”
The month-long festival is held every October to coincide with National Arts & Humanities Month. It incorporates all kinds of arts events: movie screenings, concerts, outdoor performances, and more. Though some big events, like Laura Stevenson’s hometown show at the Saugerties Reformed Church, are ticketed, many are free. Make Music Saugerties, for instance, is an afternoon of live music spread all throughout the village, with local musicians set up in storefronts and on the street. There are also a number of free film screenings, some of which feature Q+As with the filmmakers.
Past participants include local artists like Linda Montano, and the focus is almost entirely on Saugerties residents — both those performing, and those attending. “The focus,” says Soffer, “is on bringing the arts to the community, and this focuses on connecting the community to the arts.”
Here are 6 Shout Out Saugerties events you don’t want to miss:
Where: Saugerties Village
When: noon – 5 p.m.
What: Returning for this year’s festival, Make Music Saugerties features free performances from local musicians like Paul Clarke, Spaghetti Eastern, Finding Alice, and more, spread all throughout businesses in the center of town.
Attention Hudson Valley: local songer/songwriter @laurastevenson is making her Saugerties debut at the Reformed Church on October 5 at 730pm. Tickets link in our bio! #hudsonvalley #hudsonvalleyartist #singersongwriter #laurastevenson #saugerties #saugertiesny #localmusician #supportlocalmusic #shoutout #shoutoutsaugerties @hellosaugerties @community.saugerties
Where: Saugerties Reformed Church
When: 7:30 p.m.
What: Saugerties resident Stevenson released one of the year’s best albums in The Big Freeze, a collection of deeply-human songs about leaving and returning, about home and the road. She will perform her only local concert of 2019 — as well as her Saugerties debut — at this intimate show, accompanied only by violinist Aidan Kohler. Tickets are $15.
Where: Masonic Lodge, Russell Street
When: 3 – 8 p.m.
What: Come see free performances of three plays, as a comedic interlude, by local playwrights. First, Sydnie Grossberg Ronga directs Joanna Weber’s Emerging Man and Hit Parade by Kate McCamy; to close the evening, Josepha Gutelius’s Miracle Mile directed by Beth Troxell.
When: 1 – 4 p.m.
What: If your house is missing a creative portrait of your beloved pet, then come get one made by fine artist Joanne Pagano Weber and Marjorie Magid.
Where: Saugerties Public Library
When: 2:30 – 4 p.m.
What: World-famous performance artist Linda Montano is a born-and-bred Saugertiesian. She will lead an “interactive LAUGH-CRYATHON” outside the library. Similar to primal scream technique, Montano will lead the crowd in the more extreme emotional sounds as a means of “clearing out emotional pockets.” Avant-garde composer Pauline Oliveros will be on hand for one reason or another.
Where: Saugerties Public Library
When: 7 – 9 p.m.
What: SOS will be showing a number of free films throughout the month of October. But none will likely beat Killer of Sheep, the astounding 1978 debut of true auteur Charles Burnett, director of, among other films, To Sleep With Anger, who will also be on hand to introduce and answer questions about his film.