What is HONK! Fest West?

HONK! Fest West is a free, non-profit, community music festival driven by the energetic performance of street bands in public spaces. Completely volunteer-planned and organized, HONK! festivals are a part of a global renaissance of community street band culture. For three days in Seattle area parks and streets, 25+ bands deliver music and celebration that is accessible to all.

HONK! bands are typically acoustic and mobile, often politically aware and articulate, and always high spirited. There is a rich community ethic among HONK!ers, who use their music to erode the barriers between professional and novice, and between audience and performers. Although uniforms are sometimes used as a performance tool, individuality is key, and group members often hail from all range of classes, ethnicities, ages, and backgrounds. Perhaps most importantly, the HONK!ers’ ultimate goal is to have fun, to relish the art of making fun as a form of individual and collective transcendence, and to encourage others to see and do the same.

Who is HONK! Fest West?

HONK! Fest West is built by and for our communities. Contributions and collaborations large and small from individuals, businesses, and organizations are what keep HONK! Fest West going year after year. Event housing, feeding, and coordination of other volunteer musicians is organized and managed by hundreds of volunteers. Our hope is that HONK! Fest West is you!

HONK! Fest West is fiscally sponsored by Shunpike. Donations to HONK! Fest West will be tax-deductible to the fullest extent of the law, and may be eligible for employer matching.

Our festival is part musical gathering, part community activism. Many of us play an instrument. Some don’t. But all of us have found that live, energetic street music—no matter which side of the mouthpiece you are on—brings audience and band together in something like family. A raucous, playful family.

Where is HONK! Fest West?

HONK! Fest West occurs in the streets, parks, and public spaces of the neighborhoods of greater Seattle! We aim always to be transit-friendly and accessible. In 2019, we are embracing activism by engaging with and empowering the underserved communities of our region. It is our goal to constantly evolve to meet the needs of our hosts, and to highlight the rich cultural traditions of our diverse neighbors.