HAMMONTON - Rain was not the only thing to flood the streets of Hammonton on Friday as thousands of teenagers poured into the downtown for the annual Teen Arts Festival.

Cindy Mason-Purdie of the Atlantic County Office of Cultural and Heritage Affairs and one of the coordinators of the festival, said it is a great event because “students from all over the county get to meet and greet with people of the same interests.”

The day began at the Eagle Theater, where students from all over Atlantic County dropped off and registered for the day-long event. They were then given a map and schedule of the events throughout the day. Students were allowed to check out and participate in as many events as they wanted.

The Eagle Theater was not only a drop off point but also many of the music performances were held there during the day. The Hammonton High School Select Choir was the first performance as they sang “Fly to Paradise” by Eric Whitacre. Its performance received thunderous applause.

Teens also performed at the Town Hall, including Julie Melton of Mainland Regional High School.

“It’s a comedic monologue about a seventh-grade science class” said Melton as she waited to perform. Those in attendance laughed through the whole monologue as Melton prepared her imaginary class for an animal dissection.

“The festival is focused on kids interested in the arts, but all students are welcome to participate,” said James Donio, chairman of the board at The Eagle Theater.

The festival is an annual event that Hammonton has hosted for the past several years. It is for Atlantic County students, but homeschoolers and students from districts outside of the county are also welcome with advanced notice and registration.

Some of the other events of the day included songwriting performances at the mART, jewelry making at St. Joe’s and drawing classes at the Hammonton Arts Center.

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