The Neon Festival
neon festival 2021
October 21 & 22, 2021

About About

The NEON Festival is a celebration of energy and light in Norfolk’s Arts District. From public art to live performances, come experience the neighborhood’s transformation into a true arts destination. Check out the schedule below for a listing of all the events set to spark, and don’t miss a mural, morsel or mic drop!

Public Art Public Art

Wander through the neighborhood and discover tiny art happenings, large-scale murals and pops of neon color and light. See works on walls by celebrated national artists like Esteban del Valle and Cedric Douglas, and local heroes like Clayton Singleton and Nicole Harp.

See The Art Map

Food & Spirits Food & Spirits

There’ll be plenty to eat and drink on hand for the festival, including signature fare from NEON staples like CommuneXCROP, Zeke’s Beans and Bowls and Sanctuary, as well as from numerous food trucks throughout the district. And be sure to head over to the Plot’s Beer Garden or Neon House for a cold one.

Entertainment Entertainment

Some of Norfolk’s brightest musicians, comedians and performance artists will converge on the NEON to energize streets and stages throughout the district. Make sure to swing by The Plot for live DJ sets, the Push Comedy Theater for belly laughs, and the Chrysler Museum Glass Studio for live glassblowing performances!

Schedule Schedule

Thursday 10/21 Friday 10/22
All Food & Spirits Public Art Entertainment
  • 8:00AM - 8:00PM
    Zeke’s Beans & Bowls
    800 Granby Street, Norfolk, VA 23510

    The one and only destination in the NEON for gourmet coffee, acai bowls and Zeke’s famous poke bowls! Also serving up smoothies, fresh juices and baked goods.

    Learn more.
  • 8:00AM - 10:00PM
    Zeke’s Beans & Bowls
    800 Granby Street, Norfolk, VA 23510

    The one and only destination in the NEON for gourmet coffee, acai bowls and Zeke’s famous poke bowls! Also serving up smoothies, fresh juices and baked goods.

    Learn more.
  • 11:00AM - 11:00PM
    Sanctuary Norfolk
    109 Addison Street, Norfolk, VA 23510

    If you find yourself lingering in front of paintings at museums, love the sound of a motorcycle engine, take great lengths to intake tacos, or enjoy a cold beer on a hot day, Sanctuary is your saving grace. Sanctuary supports local artists and the things they love: good wine, beer, and cocktails, and a place to share them with friends. Whatever your MO, you can be sure of one thing: all of the tacos are made to order. Whatever you want–nothing more, nothing less.

    Learn more.
  • 5:00PM - 8:00PM
    Cafe Milo
    217 Grace Street, Norfolk, VA 23510

    NEON’s newest breakfast, lunch and coffee nook keeps cozy company near Chrysler Museum. Cafe Milo is a clean, modern and delicious affair from restaurant biz veterans (an adorable husband and wife team with two tots in tow), with made-to-order dishes and locally roasted coffee. Open late during the NEON Festival for small bites to go and signature sandwiches for dinner. Beer and wine too!

    Learn more.
  • 5:00PM
    Caior Bistro & Social
    727 Granby Street, Norfolk, VA 23510

    Granby Street’s newest bistro and social club has great food and an even better vibe. Open Wednesday 4pm-11pm, Thursday-Saturday 4-12am and Sunday 3-9pm.

    Learn more.
  • 5:00PM - 10:00PM
    Commune X CROP
    759 Granby Street, Norfolk, VA 23510

    Commune is a farmer-owned sustainable restaurant using local ingredients to serve delicious and conscientious food and drink. The CROP Foundation, founded by chef Kip Poole, is a program devoted to mentoring students and young people interested in culinary careers. Together they form CommunexCROP, a restaurant that provides a commercial kitchen to serve as an educational facility and a source of funding for CROP.

    Learn more.
  • 5:00PM
    Culture
    814 Granby Street, Norfolk, VA 23510

    NEON’s newest restaurant and bar, Culture is an eclectic and fun lounge with live music, dj’s and local artworks on display.

    Learn more.
  • 5:00PM - 10:00PM
    La Brioche
    765 Granby Street, Norfolk, VA 23510

    La Brioche is the newest culinary delight to be found in NEON with authentic French delights baked fresh every day. Pick up a pain au chocolat, ham and cheese croisant, baguette, pie or sandwich and you’ll never regret it!

    Learn more.
  • Anytime
    Black Lives More Than Matter by Clayton Singleton and Nicole Harp
    rear of O.J. Wholesale
    Magazine Lane, Norfolk, VA 23510

    Norfolk artists Nicole Harp and Clayton Singleton feel that they have a great responsibility as citizens and are honored to use visual arts in the fight for equality and all forms of justice; especially those affecting Black, indigenous, and people of color. No life matters until Black Lives Matter. As artists, they are compelled to reflect the times by speaking up, acting out and lifting people higher. Harp and Singleton hope their design resonates with the public as this fight for equal opportunity and equal representation under the law belongs to all of us. Black Lives Matter. In fact, Blacks lives more than matter, they are essential. With this mural, they are scaling the walls of art and justice inviting viewers to move on up and join the charge for social justice.

    Learn more.
  • Anytime
    Flornamental by Patrick Loud
    Commonwealth Tattoo Gallery
    804 Granby Street, Norfolk, VA 23510
    Learn more.
  • Anytime
    Jumbo-Wumbo Technico by Tommy Fox
    Brambleton Sculpture Park
    Brambleton Avenue and Yarmouth Street, Norfolk, VA 23510

    Jumbo-Wumbo Technico, a vibrant 32-foot sculpture by Richmond artist Tommy Fox, anchors a new sculpture park for the Chrysler Museum of Art’s entrance at the intersection of Brambleton Avenue and Yarmouth Street. The artist describes his work for the Chrysler as “a lofty whimsical tower” that uses color theory and visual contrast to create a design that is bright, accessible and pleasing to all.

    Learn more.
  • Anytime
    Love Across the USA by Tania Rich
    Granby Street, Norfolk, VA 23510
    Local fiber artist Tania Rich crocheted five rainbow yarn bombs emblazoned with the word LOVE, hand-stitching them to light poles in the center of the NEON District. Find them all, take a selfie, and wave the flag high for Pride!
    Learn more.
  • Anytime
    Moving Through History: NEON District Fence Gallery
    former Greyhound Bus Station
    701 Monticello Avenue, Norfolk, VA 23510

    The NEON District Fence Gallery is a temporary outdoor art exhibition surrounding the former Greyhound Bus Station in downtown Norfolk, Virginia. The gallery is comprised of twenty vinyl mesh panels printed with local and regional artists’ designs along the Granby Street and Brambleton Avenue sides of the site’s fence. Artists were asked to share artwork that reflects the constant change and history of cities and neighborhoods. The twenty artists selected for this project beautifully visualize themes of memory, history, time, future, community, evolution and creativity.

    Featured Artists:

    Benjamin Boshart

    The BIGI Collective (Brandon and Gigi Vera)

    Aimee Bruce

    Carlos Burgess

    Henry T. Chong (Hencho)

    Kadija Corinaldi

    D. Easter

    Chris Warren Fuentes

    David H. Gwaltney

    Andy Harris

    Will Jordan

    Erik Leach

    Dustin Lee

    Fiona Marinaro

    Robin Mercer Snead

    Hailey Porth

    Michael C. Ryan

    Aaron Uzzle

    Nickolai Walko

    Valerie White

    Learn more.
  • Anytime
    NEON Squared Sidewalk Murals by Governor’s School for the Arts
    Throughout the NEON District

    As a continuation of their work painting benches and streets in the NEON, Governor’s School for the Arts students are back, painting six new concrete squares of sidewalks in the neighborhood. The City of Norfolk generously agreed to loan the sidewalks as a canvas for the student artists.

    Learn more.
  • Anytime
    NEON Wayfinding Signs
    throughout the NEON District
    Olney Road and Grace Street, Norfolk, VA 23510
    Find the steel signs on Olney Road and Grace Street with attraction listings and windows displaying local artists’ work. The 2020-2021 signs feature work by Amanda Bradley, Clarissa David, Clayton Singleton and Ja’lisa Yates.
    Learn more.
  • Anytime
    Nor-Folk Quilt by Norfolk Public School Students
    801 Granby Street, Norfolk, VA 23510
    This faux quilt was comprised of several paper squares that were designed by Norfolk Public School first grade students as they studied art’s influence on community. The student project  compared the urban art of Norfolk to folk art of more rural communities. Each child chose a quilt square pattern and gathered inspiration from images of NEON’s murals. Students had been working virtually since March 2020, and this work comes together to create one collective artpiece.
    Learn more.
  • Anytime
    Say Their Names by William Payne
    Virginia Furniture
    745 Granby Street, Norfolk, VA 23510

    Artist William Payne’s mural unequivocally displays the hypocrisy that exists in America: innocent citizens, mainly minorities, killed by law enforcement with little to no repercussions. The imagery depicts an African-American man with his back to the viewer, barely holding onto a tattered American flag, flapping in the wind. The consummate symbol of America is ripped and torn, with the names of victims of policy brutality scrawled across the stripes of the flag. The piece is meant to evoke emotion and conversation: how can this be happening in the land of the free? There is far to go before there is equality and justice for everyone.

    Learn more.
  • Anytime
    Untitled by Marco Hyder
    Commonwealth Tattoo Gallery
    804 Granby Street, Norfolk, VA 23510

    After relocating to Norfolk from Germany and starting a business in the NEON District, the artist was motivated by the forward movement in Norfolk’s art community. Inspired by his love of Asian Art, the artist depicted a Japanese tiger, carrying the same traits attributed to the real animal – strength, courage and a long life. The tiger also wards off evil spirits, bad luck and disease. Find the mural on the second floor wall facing north.

    Learn more.
  • 5:00PM - 9:00PM
    Dynamic Exhibition Opening Party
    d'Art Center
    740 Boush Street, Norfolk, VA 23510

    Dynamic is d’Art Center’s first annual contemporary arts showcase exhibition from artists across the country. Dynamic features artworks produced only within the last two years, and is an opportunity for artists to showcase their current style, aesthetic, bodies of work, and signature styles regardless of artwork theme, medium, and content during Norfolk’s NEON Festival!

    Festivities include live music, snacks, raffles, live art, make & take crafts and the award ceremony with exhibition juror Solomon Isekeije.

    Learn more.
  • 5:00PM - 9:00PM
    NEON Festival Kick Off at the Museum
    Chrysler Museum of Art
    One Memorial Place, Norfolk, VA 23510

    At the Chrysler Museum of Art, enjoy live music and hands on NEON fun! Join Bhav Brigade for Glow Yoga on the lawn, listen to the Rhythm Project and grab a bite from one of the many food trucks. And don’t forget to stop by the cash bar! All FREE!

    Learn more.
  • 5:30PM - 9:00PM
    Free Improv Shows at the Push Comedy Theater
    Push Comedy Theater
    763 Granby Street, Norfolk, VA 23510

    In honor of this amazing celebration, the Push will be hosting free improv shows all night long. Starting at 5:30 there will be free improv shows every half hour featuring The Pushers and some of the Push Comedy Theater’s funniest improvisers.

  • 5:30PM - 6:30PM
    The Rhythm Project
    Chrysler Museum of Art
    One Memorial Place, Norfolk, VA 23510

    A community engagement program of the Virginia Arts Festival, The Rhythm Project is a world percussion ensemble. They are bringing their steel drums back to NEON for the fifth year to kick off the festival at the Chrysler Museum of Art outside in Mary’s Garden.

  • 6:00PM - 8:00PM
    Cardinal Skate Shop Balance Trials
    Starke Street, Norfolk, VA 23510

    Balance Trials is an open competition for skateboarders to exhibit their talents and up the ante. Dig in your bag of tricks to get prizes from Nike SB, Theories and more! The goal for Balance Trials is to merge the worlds of skateboarding and art together to recognize skateboarding’s impact in culture today.

  • 6:00PM - 7:00PM
    Chalk Art and Face Painting with GSA
    The Plot
    776 Granby Street, Norfolk, VA 23510

    Students from the Visual Arts Department at Governor’s School for the Arts will be creating artwork with the community using chalk on the Plot ground area and painting faces for children and families.

    Learn more.
  • 6:00PM - 10:00PM
    Copeland Center Pop Up Gallery
    Hurrah Players' Copeland Center
    112 W. Wilson Avenue, Norfolk, VA 23510

    The Hurrah Players’ Copeland Center features a pop up gallery for NEON in the front lobby space, featuring artwork by local artists.

  • 6:00PM - 10:00PM
    The Plot Beer Garden
    The Plot
    776 Granby Street, Norfolk, VA 23510

    Meet up in the hub of the festival for games, food trucks, cold brews from Smartmouth Brewing Company, live music and cultural performances on the main stage from NEON District arts partners.

    Learn more.
  • 6:30PM - 7:30PM
    Public Art Tour
    Chrysler Museum Glass Studio
    740 Duke Street, Norfolk, VA 23510

    Join tour guide and local history buff Joshua Weinstein of Norfolk Tour Company for a special festival art tour of the District, covering the latest murals and art projects completed in 2020 and 2021. The tour will begin at 6:30pm at the Chrysler Museum Glass Studio steps.

    Learn more.
  • 6:30PM - 7:30PM
    Public Art Tour
    The Plot
    776 Granby Street, Norfolk, VA 23510

    Join tour guide and local history buff Joshua Weinstein of Norfolk Tour Company for a special festival art tour of the District, covering the latest murals and art projects completed in 2020 and 2021. The tour will begin at 6:30pm at the Cementiscope sculpture at The Plot.

    Learn more.
  • 7:00PM - 8:00PM
    Glow Flow Yoga
    Chrysler Museum of Art
    One Memorial Place, Norfolk, VA 23510

    Join the Bhav Brigade for the most colorful night of the year! Bring your friends, family, and your mat/blanket and let your light shine bright under the stars on the lawn of the Chrysler Museum. Glow in the dark paint, neon clothes and glow sticks are encouraged! All experience levels welcome.

  • 7:00PM - 8:00PM
    Teens with a Purpose
    The Plot
    776 Granby Street, Norfolk, VA 23510

    Catch the glow up at the NEON Festival as Teens with a Purpose takes the stage for an original and electrifying musical, poetic and dance performance, backed by local musicians.

    Learn more.
  • 8:00PM - 10:00PM
    Glass After Dark
    Chrysler Museum Glass Studio
    745 Duke St, Norfolk, VA 23510

    Hot glass and live music come together for memorable evenings during Glass After Dark. Each month, watch the Perry Glass Studio team take the molten material to exciting places and enjoy entertainment by local musicians. The series kicks off during the NEON Festival with a glass demonstration and music from psych-rock band Berries. In honor of the NEON Festival, reserve free tickets with the promo code NEON at checkout. Reserve tickets at www.chrysler.org.

    Learn more.
  • 8:00PM - 9:00PM
    Public Art Tour
    Chrysler Museum Glass Studio
    740 Duke Street, Norfolk, VA 23510

    Join tour guide and local history buff Joshua Weinstein of Norfolk Tour Company for a special festival art tour of the District, covering the latest murals and art projects completed in 2020 and 2021. The tour will begin at 8:00pm at the Chrysler Museum Glass Studio steps.

    Learn more.
  • 8:00PM - 9:00PM
    Public Art Tour
    The Plot
    776 Granby Street, Norfolk, VA 23510

    Join tour guide and local history buff Joshua Weinstein of Norfolk Tour Company for a special festival art tour of the District, covering the latest murals and art projects completed in 2020 and 2021. The tour will begin at 6:30pm at the Cementiscope sculpture at The Plot.

    Learn more.

FAQ FAQ

  1. What does NEON stand for?
    NEON is an acronym for New Energy Of Norfolk, which represents the energetic and creative community of Norfolk’s Arts District.
  2. Who can I contact for more information?
    Please contact info@neonnfk.com for more information about the NEON District and the NEON Festival.
  3. Can I volunteer?
    Yes! Please click here to sign up for volunteering or contact the festival’s volunteer coordinator, Noel Gramlich at ngramlich@downtownnorfolk.org.
  4. What are the festival hours?
    Thursday night the festival runs from 5 to 10 pm at the Chrysler Museum of Art and Glass Studio. Friday at d’Art Center, the Plot and along Granby Street the festival is 6 to 10 pm.
  5. Is the festival family-friendly?
    The NEON Festival is a great place to bring kids for early evening festivities. There will be live music, arts and crafts, and other fun activities for children.
  6. Is the the festival free and open to the public?
    Yes, the NEON Festival’s events are free and open to all.
  7. Where is the best place to park?
    Parking is available at the Harrison Opera House lot, at the Chrysler Museum of Art and at the Cedar Grove lot on Monticello Avenue.

Sponsors Sponsors

Presenting Sponsors

Producing Sponsors

Contributing Sponsors

Beer Sponsor

Friends

Contact Contact

Contact info@neonnfk.com for more information on the NEON Festival.