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Popup Cafes

Meadville Neighborhood Center is very enamored with the concept of placemaking. One of the many ways Meadville Neighborhood Center engages our neighbors using placemaking is through Popup Cafes. MNC adopts spaces in transition or public spaces and makes them destinations where we can join our neighbors and make meaningful connections with each other. Common elements include shelter, refreshments, music, art, comfortable seating… just add neighbors…

John Hartnett
Meadville Neighborhood Center Board Member

MNC Pop-Up Guide

Placemaking is



Function before form



Focused on creating destinations








Project for Public Spaces

Pop-Up Dopyera Guitar Attraction

This community museum was held at 243 Chestnut Street December 1-4, 2017. It featured the Dopyera Guitar Attraction, a recreation of the DOBRO inventor’s workshop, along with musical artifacts to discover and local musicians to enjoy.

BZP Pop-Up Art Gallery

This community art gallery was held at 882 Park Avenue. It featured the 2016 BIG ZIPPER PROJECT art piece as well as art from local students, and artists. We also collaborated with many local organizations, including the Meadville Time Trade, Meadville Heart and Soul, and Going Places Mobile Learning Lab, to provide them with a space to hold programs. November 11th – 17th, 2016.  This particular project was coordinated by Merryn Spence, a Davies Service Leader through Allegheny College.

Pop-Up Parking Lot Concerts

These community concerts moved around Meadville in the summer of 2016 and 2017. They became known as the “Second Saturday Night Live Summer Concert Series.” The first of these concerts was held July 9th, 2016 at Cobblestone Cottage. It featured music from NTR and a BIG ZIPPER PROJECT workshop. From there, we moved to the long anticipated parking garage roof as well as the newly developed parking lot behind Voodoo Brewery.

Community Celebration

This community event was held April 30th, 2016 at the Downtown Mall. It featured a music festival with performers of all ages, craft and art vendors, a taste of local foods, local films, a community-based play, and even more. Sponsoring organizations were Allegheny College, the Meadville Neighborhood Center (MNC), the Meadville Time Trade, Second Saturday Community Market, the Meadville Area Middle School,  Common Roots, and more. The idea here was to celebrate all the great things happening in Meadville and highlight the Downtown Mall as a public space.


This pop-up was a cafe held February 4-6, 2016 at 924 Diamond Park to spread awareness of MNC and demonstrate the potential in downtown spaces. Our cafe featured fresh drinks and local pastries for sale as well as games, art, and music for all ages to enjoy. We partnered with the Downtown Meadville Business Alliance (DMBA) in order to participate in their “First Friday” cookie walk and festivities.  


Our next pop-up took place on November 14th, 2015 in the Eldred Building on Chestnut Street. This building, previously unoccupied, was transformed into an art gallery for a week to showcase our BIG ZIPPER PROJECT as well as local professional, amateur, and student artwork. Our opening night brought over 300 people who enjoyed refreshments, music, and community. 

MNC Cafe

Our first pop-up was a cafe held October 1, 2015 in Diamond Park to show the beauty of the park and the importance of public space. Our cafe featured fresh drinks and local pastries for sale as well as games, art, and music for all ages to enjoy.