14th Annual What the Fluff? Tribute to Union Square Innovation Festival


Contact: Jessica Eshleman



Complete details: www.flufffestival.com

Press photos: Available at this link 

Festival Goers to Surrender to the Fluff this Saturday at the 14th Annual What the Fluff? A Tribute to Union Square Innovation Festival

[Somerville, MA, September 17, 2019]  What the Fluff? A Tribute to Union Square Innovation returns for a 14th year on Saturday, September 21 from 3 to 7pm (rain date 9/22). This zany, madcap festival honors the invention of Marshmallow Fluff by Archibald Query in Somerville in 1917 and salutes the spirit of innovation that thrives in Union Square today. 

This year’s theme — Fluff Travels: All Roads Lead to Fluff — celebrates one of the most culturally rich cities in the nation, paying homage to the many roads traveled to Union Square from all over the world. With 50+ languages spoken in its schools, Somerville is home to neighbors from El Salvador, Haiti, Portugal, Brazil, and beyond. 

Festival goers will descend in droves upon Somerville to make a spectacle of their love for Marshmallow Fluff. A wide variety of themed happenings promises cost-free fun for all ages:

  • Hilarious antics with sticky activities like Fluff Musical Chairs, Fluff Hairdos, and Fluff Jousting on the Shenanigans Stage hosted by Fluff Fest’s longtime Archibald Query impersonator 
  • Feel the feeling you forgot with old-school, boardwalk-style games including Fluff Bowling, Pin the F on the Fluff Boy, Fluff Ring Toss, and more at the Midway Games Area (free to play, free to win prizes)
  • Innovation Alley: Somernova’s Village of Innovation featuring Greentown Labs innovators, Artisan’s Asylum inmates, the Somerville High Robotics Team showcasing robotic tricks and haircut-neat Scooter Demos on Scooter Lane
  • A Fluff Cooking Contest where contestants show off their best culinary home cooking genius by creating sweet or savory marshmallowy concoctions to shock and persuade celebrity judges delight     
  • Fear Factor: Daring participants to eat astonishing Fluff food pairings. Taste the fear!
  • Navigate the Fluff Travels parkour maze hosted by Parkour Generations Boston 
  • Share in the groove at a Disco Dance Party on The Neighborhood’s Patio, Family Friendly Folk Show in Bloc Cafe’s Courtyard, and Free Concert at The Jungle Music Club 
  • Free kids crafting at Play Union and Indian illustration coloring at Masala Square
  • Multiple performance areas featuring a wide variety of musical styles:
  • Groove with Emcee Felicia Jadczak and DJ L’Duke on the Fluff’n Jam Stage as they welcome: 
    • The return of crowd favorite “Flufferettes,” with their sensational burlesque performances honoring an historical 1930s radio show featured on 21 New England stations. (Appropriately enough, The Flufferettes radio show came on right before the Jack Benny Show, which featured live music and comedy.)
    • Julia Bomfim Brazilian Quartet
    • Keytar Bear
    • Red Shaydez & DJ TROY Frost
    • The crowning of the Cooking Contest victors by Mayor Curtatone 
    • Krush Faktory to throw down a one-of-a-kind mix of rock, funk, and high-energy, body-moving grooves close to the festivities
  • Bring a friend along to A ‘Nutter Stage to: 
  • Nearly 75 vendors ready to shake down sweet and savory Fluff-inspired dishes and oodles of Fluff-themed items and crafts
  • A plethora of delicious Fluff-laced creations at nearby bars, breweries, and restaurants

“Union Square is known for its hip vibe and eclectic happenings. Visitors love the sense of discovery that unfolds as they explore our funky Square. The Fluff Planning Team set out to turn up the volume on these themes, and nailed it,” said Jessica Eshleman, executive director of Union Square Main Streets. “Carrying this beloved community tradition forward is such a wildly fun honor. Fluff Festival is a perfect way to spotlight the vibrancy found regularly in Union Square’s shops, restaurants, businesses, and along its sidewalks. It’s exciting how many Fluff enthusiasts are ready to get down to the nitty gritty with all the Flufftastic festivities this Saturday! ”

The endlessly entertaining What the Fluff? Festival is made possible by the generosity of its sponsors: Allstate Insurance, Somernova, EventThem, Parkour Generations Boston, Skanska, USQ, Bow Market, Cambridge Realty Group, East Boston Savings Bank, Holiday Inn Boston Bunker Hill Area, Parenting Journey, Power Home Remodeling, and WBUR.

Festivities are expected to attract 20,000 Fluff fans and traffic will be rerouted around Union Square to accommodate festival activities. Revelers are highly encouraged to walk, bike, boogie, or take public transit.

What the Fluff? is produced by Union Square Main Streets and the Somerville Arts Council as part of the ArtsUnion series with funding from the City of Somerville.

  • Date:  Saturday, September 21, 2019 from 3 to 7pm / rain date Sunday, September 22
  • Where: Union Square in Somerville on Somerville Ave. east of Church Street to west of Warren Ave. and Bow Street from Summer Street to where it meets Somerville Ave. This newly activated area is the result of necessary construction in the Square. 
  • Cost: Free!  
  • More details: www.flufffestival.com

Union Square Main Streets

Union Square Main Streets works collaboratively to actively support a vibrant neighborhood by preserving the character and advancing the economic strength of the Union Square business district and community. More information is available at www.unionsquaremain.org.

Somerville Arts Council’s ArtsUnion

Started in 2005, ArtsUnion is an initiative to enhance the cultural economic development of Union Square. ArtsUnion presents events and markets, offers cultural and historical tours, commissions street furniture and public art, and revises zoning to incentivize arts redevelopment. ArtsUnion is funded by the City of Somerville. More information is available at www.somervilleartscouncil.org 

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