Giant Pity Party to turn Somerville into Saddest City in the Nation on Sept. 17


The City of Somerville, Somerville Arts Council, and Greg Cook (creator of The Saddest Parade on Earth) will debut the Pity Party, a giant, sad, community festival in Union Square in Somerville, Mass., from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 17. (Rain date: Sept. 18.)


A pity party is usually a party you have by yourself to wallow in sadness—wear pajamas, binge on ice cream, and listen to sad songs. Now imagine that as a free, community, block party. It’s sad for the whole family.


The Pity Party will feature performances by sad musicians (Grace, See This World, Ralph Waldo), melancholy poets (DiDi Delgado and Crystal “Navah da Buddaphliii” Beck of the Society of Urban Poetry), and depressed comedians (Jiayong Li, Tawanda Gona, Christa Weiss, Ted Pettingell). Drabby the Sad Clown (Tom Bush) will also be moping around.


Then explore the depresstival midway featuring a “Tear Dispensary” by Essie Martsinkovsky, a “Complaint (& Catharsis) Department” by julie ann otis, climate change carnival games by Kari Percival, the debut of the “Sad Sap” video game by Anthony Montuori, “Anti-Sadily Shark Juice Medicine Show” by Be Be and the American Family Happily Institute, sad caricatures by Alex Salsberg, a love letter writing station by Pat Falco (feed your completed letter into a slot that goes right into a garbage can), and unfortunately much more. Local vendors will sell ice cream to comfort your worries.


Mainly the Pity Party is aiming to be funny-sad. But it’s also a chance to express our genuine sadness about troubles in your life and the world. This Pity Party will be a funny exorcism of all that’s been getting us down. So turn that grin upside down and help make Somerville the saddest town around.


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