SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Friday night kicks off the Stone Soul Festival in Springfield, one of the largest festivals in New England celebrating African-American culture.

What started off as just a community picnic for the Mason Square community back in 1989 has evolved into a three day festival full of good music, good food and community fun.

22News was at Blunt Park Friday where rows of vendor stalls set up for the first day of the festival. Organizers told 22News Friday is just the beginning,

“We got a lot, a lot of things for the community to do, for the kids, free hot dogs and hamburgers. Picnic on Sunday, breakfast on Saturday. A lot of things for the community to do,” said Sheldon Griffin.

If you’re interested in joining the festivities on Saturday, they’ll kick off with a parade at 11:00 a.m.