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2nd Street Festival Announces Full Schedule



The 2nd Street Festival will return this fall, live and in person, Saturday – Sunday, October 2-3. Marking its 33rd year, the festival celebrates the rich culture of the historic Jackson Ward neighborhood in Downtown Richmond. This FREE event is produced by Venture Richmond Events.

Over the years, it has grown to be one of the Mid-Atlantic’s largest street festivals. Thousands visit historic Jackson Ward to reminisce about the days when 2nd Street was the heart and soul of Richmond’s African-American community and was known as “the Harlem of the South.” Today, Jackson Ward continues to be a thriving neighborhood and community.

The 2nd Street Festival is an annual celebration and homecoming over two days that features three stages of live musical entertainment along with popular food vendors, a marketplace and Artists Row to shop, and the Richmond Metropolitan Antique Car Club.

We’re really excited to be back in the Jackson Ward neighborhood,” said Sharon Bassard, Booking and Festival Manager at Venture Richmond. “This year’s lineup features Richmond favorites and up-and-coming artists. From Jazz to Reggae and Gospel to R&B, you’ll be able to find a stage over the weekend with your favorite music – all for free! We ask everyone to be a “good neighbor” and show kindness to one another by following our health and safety guidelines, encouraging you to be vaccinated, wear a mask, and maintain distancing while attending the festival.”

Venture Richmond Events continues to closely monitor CDC and VDH guidelines for COVID-19 protocols for large, in-person outdoor events. A commitment to safety and adherence to local, state, and federal ordinances and recommendations will guide all decisions regarding in-person events. (see COVID-19 guidelines)



2nd Street Festival 2021 Stage Schedule
(Subject to change)

WAVERLY R. CRAWLEY MAIN STAGE (sponsored by Virginia Union University)


  • 11:50 – 12:35pm N.F.U.S.I.O.N.Z.
  • 1:10 – 2:10pm I Would Die 4 U; A Musical Tribute to PRINCE
  • 2:30 – 3:00pm Dancing with Mama D
  • 3:30 – 4:30pm DJ Drake and MC Choco
  • 5:30 – 7:00pm Plunky & Oneness


  • 1:00 – 1:30pm James Johnson Jr
  • 2:00 – 2:30pm Virginia Union University Gospel Choir
  • 3:00 – 4:00pm J Tucker and The Krewe
  • 4:45 – 6:00pm Mighty Joshua



  • 12:00 – 1:15pm Joe Kennedy, Jr. Scholarship Recipient Chet Frierson
  • 1:45 – 2:45pm Debra Dean & The Key West Band
  • 3:15 – 4:15pm Saxsmo “Stepping Out”
  • 4:45 – 6:00pm Nathan Mitchell


  • 1:00 – 1:50pm Ashby Anderson’s Vibe
  • 2:10 – 3:10pm Larri Branch Agenda
  • 3:30 – 4:30pm Jazz In The Spirit
  • 5:00 – 6:00pm Curv Appeal



  • 12:00 – 12:10pm Welcome – Historic Jackson Ward Association- Janis Allen
  • 12:30 – 1:10pm Young Prince Charles
  • 1:40 – 2:00pm Richmond Urban Dance Company
  • 2:30 – 3:30pm Bak N Da Day
  • 4:00 – 5:00pm Drew Miles and Company


  • 1:30 – 2:00pm Chiquita Cross
  • 2:30 – 3:15pm DJ Milk D
  • 3:50- 4:30pm Glennroy & Company
  • 5:00 –6:00pm Testiphy Band

Saturday’s Headliner, Plunky & Oneness

For over 50 years, Richmond saxophonist, songwriter and producer J. Plunky Branch has been at the vanguard of Afro-centric jazz, funk, R&B, house music, and go-go, weaving these interrelated musical forms into a forward-looking message of empowerment, positivity, and cultural awareness. Along with his band, Plunky & Oneness, he has appeared in concert with some of the biggest names in Black music, including Patti Labelle, Ray Charles, Earth Wind & Fire, Frankie Beverly & Maze, LL Cool J, Chuck Brown, and more. His song “Every Way But Loose” was a top-ten soul music chart hit in London in the 1980’s and his hit single, “Drop,” was released in 2007. He also wrote “2nd Street Jaunt,” a song that Venture Richmond used in TV commercials promoting the 2019 festival. He will be performing at the festival on Saturday, October 2 from 5:30 – 7:00pm at the Waverly R. Crawley Main Stage.

Saturday’s Featured Jazz Stage Artist, Nathan Mitchell

Nathan Mitchell was recently named one of the final nominees for a 2021 NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Jazz Album for his newest release Donny, Duke and Wonder. He will be featured on the Jazz Stage Saturday, October 2 from 4:45 – 6:00pm.

Sunday’s Closing Performance, Mighty Joshua

Closing out the festival on Sunday, October 3 from 4:45 – 6:00pm is reggae artist, Mighty Joshua, whose soulful exploration in the evolution of sound creates an expression of reggae for the modern day.

Official Festival Poster Artist, Unicia Buster

Purchase an official 2021 2nd Street Festival poster designed by local quilter and artist, Unicia Buster. The new poster will be unveiled on September 23, watch on Facebook Live! Posters will be available for sale at the festival, or at Plan 9 Music in Carytown and online at starting on Monday, October 4.

Jackson Project Weekend Activities

The JXN Project is a historic preservation project that celebrates the 150th anniversary of Jackson Ward by properly contextualizing the origin story of the nation’s first historically registered Black urban neighborhood. JXN is designed to excavate, elevate and educate the hidden histories of the city’s sixth ward, which inspired an effort to erect honorary street designations in honor of notable Jackson Wardians, also known as “Unveiling The Vanguard.” The 2nd Street Festival is partnering with JXN as they virtually unveil the vanguard by video released across their social media and website on October 2. Also, on October 2, festival-goers are invited to engage in a socially distanced, self-guided tour of the honorary street signs. For all details, visit and follow @TheJXNProject on all social media platforms.

Radio One’s “2nd Street MIX” Weekend

Back again for another year, 2nd Street Festival partner Radio One’s “2nd Street MIX” weekend will get you ready for the festival by bringing you mixes from the hottest DJs in the city! Tune into 99.3/105.7 KISS FM on Saturday, October 2 from 4:00pm-midnight and Sunday, October 3 from noon-7:00pm. Hear mixes from DJ King Tutt, DJ Drake, and DJ Lonnie B playing all your favorite 2nd Street Festival hits!

FREE Walking Tours, guided by Gary Flowers

Venture Richmond Events will provide FREE guided walking tours led by Gary Flowers who has a four-generation family connection to Historic Jackson Ward. “Educating the public to the place Historic Jackson Ward holds in commerce, education, and dismantling racial segregation in the United States of America is critically important to me,” Mr. Flowers said. These 60-minute tours leave at 1:00pm on Saturday and at 1:00pm on Sunday. Tour groups meet on the sidewalk at the Maggie Walker National Historic Site, 2nd & E. Leigh Streets.

Update on the Kidz Zone

Due to the highly interactive nature of the activities planned for the Kidz Zone, the 2nd Street Festival will not host a family area this year. The Kidz Zone, produced by the Children’s Museum, is a robust and engaging, much-loved, part of the Festival. However, due to the close proximity required for those activities and the lack of an approved COVID-19 vaccine for children under 12, we believe cancelling the activities is best for the safety of our littlest patrons. The Children’s Museum will be back to produce the much-loved Kidz Zone in 2022.

For information about the 2nd Street Festival, please visit:



Richard Hayes is the co-founder of RVAHub. When he isn't rounding up neighborhood news, he's likely watching soccer or chasing down the latest and greatest board game.

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The Fan

RPD officer hospitalized after being struck head-on by motorcyclist on West Broad Street

“What happened this evening was a despicable and cowardly act that will not be tolerated,” said Richmond Police Chief Gerald M. Smith.



On Tuesday evening just after 5:00 PM, Richmond Police officers responded to the report of aggressive driving by a group of motorcycles near the intersection of West Broad Street and Terminal Place. Once on scene, the officer began directing traffic in the 1300 block of West Broad Street, the officer was struck head-on by a motorcycle within the pack.

The driver left the scene and the officer was transported to a local hospital by an RPD officer where he is now being evaluated and treated for a head injury.

The driver of one of the motorcycles traveling within the group, an adult male, was later stopped in Henrico then transported back to Richmond where he is currently being detained and questioned with traffic-related charges pending.

“This brave officer put himself in harm’s way to protect the residents of our city,” Mayor Levar Stoney said in a statement. “This incident is a reminder of the challenges our first responders face every day and the sacrifices they are willing to make to serve and protect us. I am grateful that the officer survived this potentially deadly encounter and ask you to join me in wishing him a speedy recovery from his injuries.”

“What happened this evening was a despicable and cowardly act that will not be tolerated,” said Richmond Police Chief Gerald M. Smith. “Our RPD family stands with this officer and his family. We are grateful for the way our men and women work every day to protect this community, despite the risks they face.”

Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call RPD Detective V. Griffith at (804) 646-1718 or contact Crime Stoppers at (804) 780-1000. The P3 Tips Crime Stoppers app for smartphones also may be used. All Crime Stoppers reporting methods are anonymous.



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Person of interest in Multiple Commercial Robberies

On January 15th a man robbed a business on Cowardin and then Forest Hill Avenue.



From RPD

Richmond Police detectives are asking for the public’s assistance in identifying the individual in these photos who is a person of interest in two commercial robberies that occurred on Saturday, January 15.

At approximately 8:10 p.m., January 15, officers responded to the 300 block of Cowardin Avenue for the report of a commercial robbery. Officers made contact with the employee who stated that the suspect entered the business and displayed a firearm and demanded money. The suspect fled on foot in an unknown direction.

At approximately 8:30 p.m., on the same day, officers responded to the 5000 block of Forest Hill Avenue for another commercial robbery. Officers spoke to the employee, who stated that the suspect entered the business and displayed a firearm, demanding cash. The suspect fled on foot in an unknown direction.

The same suspect was seen on video surveillance wearing the same clothing in both robberies. The suspect was last seen wearing a black coat, black mask, gray pants and black shoes.

Anyone who may have been in the area during these robberies, or has information about the identity of this individual is asked to call Third Precinct Detective M. Sacksteder at (804) 646-1068 or Crime Stoppers at (804) 780-1000. The P3 Tips Crime Stoppers app for smartphones also may be used. All Crime Stoppers reporting methods are anonymous.



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VPM Reporting that Two Local Starbucks Joining Effort to Unionize

The Starbucks on Midlothian Turnpike, across from Chesterfield Towne Center, and the one on Forest Hill Avenue are the two stores that filed paperwork last week.



Starbucks across the nation are starting to push for the right to Unionize. The Starbucks in our area are no exception.

Details from VPM

The Starbucks on Midlothian Turnpike, across from Chesterfield Towne Center, and on Forest Hill Avenue filed paperwork on Wednesday to begin the process of forming a labor union. Employees like Katheryn Wiggers say they just want a seat at the bargaining table.

“I love our community, and our community loves coming to our Starbucks every day. And I don’t want to disrupt business or anything like that. I just want a fair and equal opportunity to speak for myself,” Wiggers said.

Wiggers has worked at Starbucks for the last five years. She says her colleagues have always had grievances with the corporation, but they didn’t realize they had a way to do something about it until other Starbucks employees began to unionize across the country.

“The five years that I’ve worked with Starbucks, I’ve seen a fair share of inequality and also just things that, if I had been able to advocate for myself, I would have changed,” Wiggers said. “And now going into this knowing that we can advocate for ourselves and have a voice is really game changing for us.”

The article goes into much more detail on the fight and I highly recommend you hit up that link to read the full story.

You can also check out Starbucks Workers United which is based in Buffalo where they recently were successful in unionizing.

We believe that the best way to truly inspire and nourish the human spirit is to organize for greater justice, greater equality, and a greater vision of what life can be for Starbucks workers across the Buffalo region and for workers in the coffee and restaurant industry.

As Starbucks Workers United, we are organizing a union to bring out the best in all of us. Our organizing committee includes Starbucks partners from across the Buffalo region. Many of us have invested years of our lives at Starbucks, while others have recently become partners. We all have one thing in common — we want the company to succeed and we want our work lives to be the best they can be.

We believe that there can be no true partnership without power-sharing and accountability. For this reason, and through discussing our shared experience working at Starbucks, we have come to the conclusion that organizing a union is the best way to truly contribute meaningfully to this partnership and both ensure that our voices are heard and ensure that when we are heard we have equal power to affect change and get things done.

We are “partners” becoming partners.

Starbucks is the leader in the coffee industry, and one of the most successful and companies in the world. We want to share in that success, and we want to have a voice in determining what that looks like for us. We think there is a disconnect between corporate and us. The company says that partners come first, but all too often puts large shareholders above all else.

We are not anti-Starbucks. We are Starbucks! We know what it takes to make this company run, and we know best what we need to be able to do our jobs to the fullest. We want to be able to be our best selves, and we cannot reach our full potential if we are understaffed, overextended, exhausted, and burned-out. We are organizing because we know that Starbucks partners have the ability to improve this company, transform this industry, and form a collaborative, creative, forward-thinking, justice seeking, independent organization that will allow us to advocate for ourselves.

According to CNBC article in July revenue hit $7.5 billion vs. $7.29 billion expected




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