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First Baptist Church & NAACP Hillside to Hold First Jazz Festival


By: Aaliyah Amos 

First Baptist Church of Hillside and the Hillside Branch of the NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People) are happy to announce the formation of a new joint partnership to host the first-ever “Hillside Jazz Festival” on Wednesday, July 13, from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

The Hillside Jazz Festival will take place on the lawn of First Baptist Church, located at 166 Hillside Avenue in Hillside. 

The primary purpose of the Hillside Jazz Festival is to bring the gift of the performing arts to Hillside and reintroduce the jazz genre to underserved children and youth in the local community. 


According to the NAACP Hillside, jazz as an art form is the birth child of gospel music and the blues. Historically, it has been leaned upon to support underserved communities during times of great struggle.

“It is the intent of FBC-Hillside and the NAACP-Hillside Branch to not only host this first-ever event for children and youth in the community but also develop this event into becoming an annual festival which draws world-renowned jazz artists and educators to Hillside,” said Reverend Dr. Christopher Michael Jones, senior pastor of First Baptist Church of Hillside.

“The Hillside NAACP is excited about this partnership with First Baptist Church to bring the first annual jazz festival to our community. We recognize the benefits of exposing our young people to the arts. This jazz festival will be fun, educational and interactive for all ages,” said Nicole Graves-Watson, founder and president of the NAACP in Hillside.  

The organization encourages bringing your family members and a lawn chair to attend this free event on Wednesday, July 13, to 166 Hillside Avenue.

In the event of inclement weather, the Hillside Jazz Festival will take place the following day, Thursday, July 14, from 7:00 p.m.


The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) is the oldest civil rights organization in the United States.

The NAACP was founded in 1909 to dismantle racism and accelerate change in crucial areas such as criminal justice, healthcare, education, climate, and the economy.

You can contact the Hillside NAACP at for further information.