Ann Arbor's Water Hill Music Festival canceled after 8 years

By Meredith Bruckner - Community News Producer

The Nintendoland Family Band performs at the Water Hill Music Festival on May 6, 2018 (Photo: Meredith Bruckner)

ANN ARBOR - The city known for its diverse annual festivals is losing a magical one this year.

The organizers of the Water Hill Music Festival, husband and wife Paul and Claire Tinkerhess announced Saturday on the event's Facebook page that they are ending it.

They cited concern for public safety, personal priorities and the challenge of maintaining its "noncommercial character" as the reasons behind the decision.

The Water Hill Music Festival was started to celebrate collaboration and community in one of Ann Arbor's most distinctive and historic neighborhoods.

On the first Sunday in May, residents would turn their front porches, lawns and driveways into live music stages and perform for onlookers strolling the neighborhood. In order to participate in the festival, the performers had to live there. 

Residents listen to the Nintendoland Family Band at the Water Hill Music Festival on May 6, 2018 (Photo: Meredith Bruckner)

Onlookers listen to a group perfom at the Water Hill Music Festival on May 6, 2018 (Photo: Meredith Bruckner)

Onlookers listen to a group perfom at the Water Hill Music Festival on May 6, 2018 (Photo: Meredith Bruckner)

People gather to listen to performers on W. Summit St. at the Water Hill Music Festival on May 6, 2018 (Photo: Meredith Bruckner)

Organized completely by residents of Water Hill, they even came up with a special bathroom system whereby certain homes were marked as public water closets.

Co-founder Paul Tinkerhess declined interviews with the media because he wanted the festival to maintain its word-of-mouth character and be a day for Ann Arborites to meet and celebrate with their neighbors.

Here is the full announcement from their Facebook page:

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