Baltimore City

HonFest turns 20 and John Waters gets 'Carsick' [Hampden]

This is traditionally the time of year when I use this column to give the HonFest update. And I'll get to that in a bit, but before we do, there are a number of other awesome events going on in Hampden to highlight first.

Friday, June 6 is First Fridays in Hampden, and there are a number of events going on.


For folks who remember the 1990s, especially the 1990s in Baltimore, WHFS was the area's leading alternative rock radio stations. And one of the most popular DJs there was Johnny Riggs. During his time working for the station, he had access to a number of "alternative" artists and he would shoot candid Polaroid portraits of them.

His subjects include Beck, Bjork, The Flaming Lips, R.E.M., Fiona Apple, Snoop Dogg, Courtney Love, Dave Grohl, Joey Ramone, Gwen Stefani, Ice-T, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Green Day, Oasis, Eminem and PJ Harvey.


The show, called "Faced," features a selection of those portraits. Faced opens Friday, June 6 with a reception from 7-10 and runs through the end of July in Atomic Books' Eightbar.

On the same night, Mud And Metal, 1121 W. 36th St., hosts an opening reception from 6-9 p.m. for illustrator Colleen M. Rollin's exhibit, Animal Husbandry. The show will run through June 30.

John Waters' new book, "Carsick," about his hitchhiking adventure from Baltimore to San Francisco, goes on sale June 3. The filmmaker and author will return to Atomic Books on Thursday, June 12 at 7 p.m. to sign copies.

And on Saturday, June 14, from 5-8 p.m., there will be an opening reception for Mark Barry's exhibit, Faces In Places: New Paintings and Monotypes, from 5-8 p.m. at Fleckenstein Gallery, 3616 Keswick Road.

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And this brings us to HonFest 2014 – the festival's 20th anniversary. The annual, Cafe Hon-organized festival is Saturday, June 14 from 11 a.m-10 p.m. and Sunday, June 15 from 12-6 p.m. It runs the length of the Avenue, West 36th St., from Falls Road to Chestnut Avenue.

Aside from the usual outside vendors selling everything from rain gutters and storm windows to home foam insulation and hot tubs, you also, of course, have all the Hampden merchants, who will have their doors open, and a number of other festival vendors selling arts, crafts and consumables.

Contest-wise, there will be the signature Best Hon contest, but there will also be a mustache contest, the Mashed Potato Dance Contest, Best Beehive and more.

On the Main Stage on Saturday, aside from the above mentioned competitions, you can see Lennon LaRicci and the Leftovers, The Fabulettes, Landis Expandis and more. On Sunday, Tommy El's Elvis Tribute, Hypnotic Panties Band takes to the Main Stage..


On The Falls Road Stage at West 36th Street, The Transporters, High & Lonesome, Whisky Train, Mark Bray & The Steel Soul Cowboys, Qi Lo and Sweet Leda play. Then on Sunday, The Music Workshop, Market Zero, Getamungstit, and Rob Fahey & The Pieces play the Falls Road Stage.

On the WLOY Stage at West 36th and Chestnut Avenue, you can see Maria Dontas, Mark Hopkins, Television, Swampcandy and more on Saturday. And on Sunday, you can catch QueenEarth & Janice B., David Glaser, Matt Hutchinson, Don Kim Trio, Claire Antony and Caleb Stine.

For updates, lineups, schedules and parking suggestions, be sure to visit the HonFest website at