Back on the Blocks Festival

November 3, 2017 @ 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Belmont Cultural Center
432 W Belmont St
Pensacola, FL 32501

A Festival of Music, Dance and Art in Historic Belmont DeVilliers. A Foo Foo Festival event.

November 3, 7:00 – 9:00pm – Soulful Shorts, Snip-Its & Mini Movies

Soulful Shorts, Snip-its, and Mini Film Viewing is a one-evening screening and viewing of legendary greats in film, videos, musicals, and short documentaries of African American culture on the “Truth For Youth Big Screen.”

You’ll enjoy Belmont-DeVilliers legendary Chitlin Circuit visitors from the 40’s, 50’s, and 60’s, such as: B.B. King, Louis Armstrong, Aretha Franklin, Ray Charles, the Temptations, Ike & Tina Turner, Sam Cooke, Etta James, Jackie Wilson, Bessie Smith, and many, many, more. This event is Free, pet free and open to the public.

November 4, 12:00pm – 7:00pm – Back on the Blocks Block Party

A one-day musical series of Motown & old school blues, jazz, R&B, gospel, rock, pop, and classical music for an outdoor evening and entertainment party that celebrates community, camaraderie, and culture. This year’s party will celebrate with artists and entertainers from New Orleans, Atlanta, and our local Pensacola favorites, accompanied by a half-day “Beats on the Block” jam session of stage and street corners performances by local student musicians.

This event includes a Battle of the Bands Challenge as local high school, and college bands “strut their stuff”. Performances by Washington High School, Pensacola High School, and Pine Forest High School. (Music, Nov 4th, Corners of Belmont & DeVilliers). This event is Free, Pet free and open to the public.

The history of “The Blocks,” the common name of the historic Belmont DeVilliers neighborhood, is artistically and culturally rich in music and entertainment. Its origin began as the Black business, entertainment, and cultural district in the city of Pensacola, also known as the “Harlem of the South”. Staking its claim and musical heritage from the “Chitlin Circuit”, it now reclaims being the center of artistic and cultural renaissance as an economic resurgence.

Now in its fourth year, the Back on the Blocks is a celebration of music and dance, culture and arts, film, food, and heritage climaxing into an infusion of history and education while gathering together local, regional and national visitors during a 2-day festival taking place on Friday, Saturday, November 3- 4, 2017 at the intersections of Belmont & DeVilliers.


Monogram Hunters Big Chief Tyrone “Pie” Stevenson, of New Orleans, is renowned for both creating and sewing colorful three dimensional bead formation Mardi Gras Indian costumes.  Accompanied by Big Queen Denise Smith, plus little Chief, four little queens, two flagboys, a medicine man, and other members of the Tribe, this traditional Pow Wow, dance and celebration is rich in African & Native American culture and connects New Orleans, Mobile, and Pensacola history through the Seminole heritage.   Pictures available – $10


Crystal Clear keeps the dance floor packed from start to finish. They don’t just perform songs from the stage – they integrate themselves and the music into your party. From the vocalists joining in the fun on the dance floor to guests playing along on tambourine and cowbell, the band becomes a part of your party and you a part of theirs! It is this dedication to fun that has made them a long-time favorite of event planners, corporate clients and countless Southeastern brides and grooms. On stage, Crystal Clear’s three dedicated vocalists lead the charge. Energetic and personable, their varied styles afford the band the versatility to play anything from Motown classics to current chart-toppers, and sound great doing it. The backing band consists of veterans of the Atlanta music scene, whose experience means a knack for playing the right song at exactly the right time. A dynamic saxophonist rounds out the band with the smooth sound that can only come from a horn. A trumpet can also be added to get the big sound of a horn section.


The band features the South’s most select assemblage of musicians, with performers hailing from New York, Washington D.C., New Orleans, Miami, Cape Girardeau and Los Angeles. These seasoned musicians have performed with such greats as Lou Rawls, the Temptations, the Coasters, Dionne Warwick, Benny Goodman, Frank Sinatra, the Platters, the Four Tops, Diana Ross, and Harry Connick Jr. Members can also boast of degrees from the nation’s top music schools, including the Julliard School of Music, North Texas State University, and the University of Southern Mississippi.


Debra A. K. Thompson, an author and motivational speaker, will be holding a book signing event for the Back on the Blocks event.  She released a new book in early April of this year that explores why we are unable to consistently move towards our ultimate goal and change inevitable negative results into a positive end.


John ‘J’ has been playing the violin for over 25+ years.  He graced us with his presence last year by doing two outstanding solos.  We asked him to return again so that he may electrify the audience with his classical sound over soulful music.  We all look forward to seeing what his selection will be this year!


Robert Atkins will be returning again, and he will have his Artwork on display for all to enjoy.  Robert Atkins is a native of Pensacola, Fl. Robert attended public school here in Pensacola, but his love for art begin long before he started school. Robert feels that his talent is a God given one due to the fact he could draw recognizable figures and objects before he could write.