Essence Music Festival kicks off it's 30th Anniversary in New Orleans

Essence Music Festival kicks off it's 30th Anniversary in New Orleans

Essence Fest is celebrating its 30th birthday and is returning better than ever. The Essence Festival of Culture began its festivities on Thursday, marking the road to 30 years of celebrating Black culture and offering a sneak peek at some of the excitement to come.

"Apart from my life, hardly much in my existence has lasted for thirty years. The CEO of Essence, Caroline Wanga, stated, "That's no easy feat in the world the way it is today, and part of that is because of where we are, the cultural mecca called New Orleans."

They are celebrating their birthday and paying tribute to New Orleans, the city that helped bring them here, while also going all out.

At the kick-off event on Thursday, attendees were treated to a taste of New Orleans culture through interactive art installations, food demonstrations, and lectures by some of the city's most recognizable cultural carriers, the Black Masking Indians.

"Thank you for understanding the city of New Orleans is second to none not only in the United States of America but throughout the world," stated Mayor Cantrell. "There’s not other culture as rich as this culture right here."

"We thought about all the ways we could demonstrate Black birthday behavior and all the things, was to make sure we acknowledge the headliner that mattered the most – which is this city and I want to start by stating we are interested in continuing to go together we ain’t breaking up," Wanga stated.

According to Cantrell, Essence Fest has an estimated $300 million economic effect on the city and draws roughly 500,000 visitors. She said that this year's attendance is back to pre-COVID levels.

Before you join in on the fun, Mayor Cantrell would want to urge everyone to be careful and hydrated. The events in the convention center don't start until Friday morning.

Mayor Cantrell advised people to remain hydrated because "we know that we are experiencing extreme heat." "We have all of our unified commands prepared to keep all corners of our city safe."

Follow this original article through WWL here.

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