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It’s Memorial Day weekend.  The unofficial start of summer.   In the music community, the festival that signifies the start of summer is Kaya Fest.  Happening tomorrow, Kaya Fest’s blend of food, music, and outdoor fun always means summer is here.

The festival takes place in The Strip District outside of Kaya on Smallman Street.  No cover charge! The line-up (according to their website) this year features:

DJ from noon-2



Elias Khouri: Rising teen guitar phenom playing soaring funk, soul, and rock.


Bindley Hardware Co.: Rust-belt Americana music drawing from classic country, folk and modern alt-country.


Timbeleza: A Kaya Fest tradition! Infectious, driving Brazilian percussion brought to life by the fantastic dancers of the Pittsburgh Samba Group.


Chase and the Barons: Energetic alt-rock band with quirky lyrics and a groovy vibe.


Chantillion: Mega-heavy, ponderous, trippy prog rock


Timbeleza‘s second set with the PSG dancers.


Tropidelic: Nationally touring reggae group from Cleveland stirs it up with elements of hip-hop, high energy funk and silky smooth pop


Truth and Rites: Jamaican rhythms of Reggae, Dub, Ska and Soul

Wilson-McGinley, Inc sponsors the music!

Food is provided by Kaya, and the menu this year is:

BBQ Chicken

Hot Dogs

Veggie Bahn Mi

Grilled Chicken Sandwich with cabbage and habanero honey

Pulled Pork Sandwich

Mushroom Sloppy Jo

Corn on the Cob

Sides: Chips & Salsa, Guacamole

I recommend taking an Uber, Pat Bus, Lyft, or Z-Tripp as the beer and summer drinks are plentiful.  Of course stopping at The Leaf and Bean on 22nd (where I work) for a cigar and coffee is always a good idea too.

Summer doesn’t start until Kaya Fest.  Make sure you’re there so your summer can start and start well.