Corn Hill Arts Festival marks its 50th year; historian says event saved the neighborhood

Jul 9, 2018

The Corn Hill Arts Festival is this coming weekend and it marks a milestone. 

It's the 50th year of the event.

Its humble beginning was August 23, 1969. The neighborhood wasn't even known as Corn Hill back then; it was Rochester's Old Third Ward, once one of the city's wealthiest neighborhoods.

In the summer of 1969, it was the target of Urban Renewal efforts. Nine hundred homes had already been demolished.

But a group of artists who lived in the Third Ward weren't ready to give up. They, with the help of other neighbors and the Landmark Society, were trying to restore their homes.

I met in Corn Hill recently with historian Jim DeVinney and Rob Goodling, who literally wrote the book* on the history of the Corn Hill Arts Festival and how helped reclaim the neighborhood.

Click on the LISTEN link above to hear more.

The 50th Corn Hill Arts Festival is July 14 and 15. 

*Corn Hill and its Art Festival: The First Forty Years, published in 2009.