DetroitIsIt 2

Dally in the Alley was the Original DIY Fest

Secret Detroit: The Cass Corridor’s Rich Cultural Scene Lives on in Detroit’s Longest Running Community Run Festival

Dally in the Alley

Cass Corridor lives on in Dally in the Alley. The one-day festival is Detroit’s largest and longest running community run festival in the city—and no small feat for an event known to generate crowds of 80,000 +. Nor is it something to be taken for granted in a neighborhood that’s starting to feel more corporate than we’re used to.  

Remember this?

Remember this?

And still, on one day each year, we gather, as we have for forty some years, in cramped and dirty streets to discover new music, eat, drink, be merry and buy and sell hand crafted items: vintage clothes, beaded jewelry, crystals, tie dyed everything.  

In typical Detroit fashion, the party started well before it was recognized. Festivities kicked off in 1977—the same year construction started on the Ren Cen and Iggy Pop released his debut solo album, The Idiot. But it wasn’t until 1982 that the festival was official dubbed Dally in the Alley—a moment marked by its first poster and the start of a great Detroit tradition.  

Designed each year by a different artist, the poster’s reveal is as anticipated as the Dally’s musical lineup and limited-edition prints are coveted objects. Especially the first, which was designed by legendary artist Gary Grimshaw, whose work helped to define the “rock poster” genre, with clients such as MC5, The Doors and The White Stripes.  

Curious for more? Lucky for you, Dally in the Alley goes down THIS weekend. Click here for the good details and the complete poster collection.  

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments