Black music, poetry, art and entrepreneurship will be celebrated at this weekend’s second annual Black Culture Festival.
The first event, held last year at Genesee Valley Park, was created to support black businesses during the pandemic. Co-host Will Powers said it was meant to be a one-time event, but it was so well received that they were inspired to do it again.
âAll the participants were really happy,â said Powers. “And the people who missed it were asking if it’s only been a year or if it’s going to be an ongoing thing.”
This year it expanded to a two-day celebration at Parcel 5 in downtown Rochester. New offerings include a talent show, majorette dance battle, comedy acts and live music.
Powers and his team are hoping the added entertainment and the new location will receive a similar response to last year’s festival.
Co-host Alia Evans said it’s an event anyone can attend and appreciate black culture.
âWe have the Greek festival. We have the Ukrainian Festival. We have the Puerto Rican festival, âEvans said. âAnd all of these festivals are open to everyone. So everyone can come. “
Evans said their mission is to give black business owners a space to network and build capital, and they hope people come to enjoy the entertainment while supporting local black businesses.
âWe would like people to keep this in mind when they come to patronize the different vendors,â Evans said.
The festival takes place from 5 pm to 10 pm on Friday July 30 and from noon to 10 pm on Saturday July 31 at Parcel 5. Admission is free.
April Franklin is a reporter for WXXI Public Media, a media partner of CITY.