BRIDGEPORT — When a friend first told Jeff Fox the concept for Black Rock Porchfest more than four years ago, it struck him as awesome.

The event features local musicians playing live on porches throughout Bridgeport’s Black Rock section. Fox, who is a Black Rock resident and a musician, thought the project was a perfect fit. After all, Black Rock is a tight-knit community whose residents have a passion for the arts, he said.

“Plus, we like any excuse to day drink,” added Fox.

On Saturday, Black Rock will host its fourth annual Porchfest from 1 to 8 p.m. The festival will feature 60 acts performing on the porches of homes throughout Black Rock. That includes Fox’s band, the Lake Avenue Project, which will perform at 1 p.m. at 520 Lake Ave.

Fox has performed every year of the Porchfest — the first year as a solo act, and then with his band. He’s watched the festival grow from a smallish event with roughly a dozen bands in its first year to a local phenomenon.

The key to Porchfest’s success, Fox said, is that it’s such a good fit for the neighborhood.

“Black Rock has a beach-town community vibe that just seems to embrace music,” he said.

Fox first heard the idea for Porchfest from his friend Marni Lindquist, president of the Black Rock Community Council. Lindquist is also one of the three organizers of Porchfest, along with Catherine Conroy and Nicole Cassidy. Lindquist said Cassidy first pitched the Porchfest idea, after seeing a similar event in a town in Massachusetts.

Lindquist loved the idea, and soon plans were underway to find musicians who would play and homeowners who would host them. After booking about 12 bands to play the first year, Lindquist and company snagged double that number the next year, and the event has continued to grow. She said this year organizers had to cap the number of bands at 60 so the festival didn’t get too unwieldy.

“It’s a family-friendly event,” Lindquist said. “It builds community. It gets people out of their house and walking to other people’s houses.”

For the safety of patrons, this year three streets will be shut down for Porchfest — Lake Avenue, Brittin Avenue and Beacon Street. Lindquist said a police officer has also been hired to enforce safety.

However, she said, the event usually is pretty peaceful.

“I’ve always been impressed with how respectful people are of their neighbors’ property,” Lindquist said.

Those looking forward to Porchfest 2019 include musician Rob Phelps, whose band Fingersleeve will perform at 2 p.m. at 415 Midland Ave. Phelps is also a graphic designer who designed the maps for this year’s event. He said he appreciates the looseness of Porchfest, which often feels more like a casual gathering than a music festival.

“It’s kind of a throwback to when things weren’t as regulated,” he said. “It’s like an old-fashioned block party, on a larger scale.”

Visitors to Porchfest are asked to bring a non-perishable food item to donate to the Black Rock Food Pantry. For more information, visit