With Rain Forest producer, Will Packer tweeting messages that his entire flight to New Orleans was full of Black people and that it felt like Soul Plane, you truly know that the Essence Festival has kicked off.
Now in its 19th year, the ESSENCE Festival is the nation’s definitive African-American live music and cultural experience. The ultimate destination for entertainment and inspiration hosted over 400,000 attendees last year.
The Festival has expanded its reach and programming by adding a fourth day””and more free entertainment””to the traditionally held three-day event. On Thursday, July 4, it held its first-ever, free and open-to-the-public, “Family Reunion Day.” Festival attendees experienced an uplifting and joyous day of empowerment panels, family-friendly games and activities, delicious food from New Orleans‘s best barbecue vendors, cooking competitions, fireworks and exciting musical guests; all designed to strengthen the entire family in soul, health and heart.
Powerfully, on this Sunday, July 7 th, the ESSENCE Festival will unite mothers and families in an effort to end violence and murder across America. At the close of the Festival, ESSENCE and Mayor Mitch Landrieu will host the moving and uplifting ‘Love, Loss and Life’, a special prayer vigil for mothers who have loved and lost at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center on the ESSENCE Empowerment Experience Stage.