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Black Culture Festival kicks off Friday at Parcel 5

Parcel 5 is the new location for the second annual Black Culture Festival
James Brown
Parcel 5 is the new location for the second annual Black Culture Festival

Black music, poetry, art, and entrepreneurship will be celebrated during this weekend's second annual Black Culture Festival. 

The first event, held last year in Genesee Valley Park, was created to support Black businesses during the pandemic. Organizer Will Power said it was supposed to be a one-time event, but it was so well-received, they were inspired to do it again.

“Everybody that attended was really happy, '' Powers said. “And the people who missed it were asking if it was just one year or if it was going to be a continual thing.” 

This year, it's expanded into a two-day celebration at Parcel 5 in downtown Rochester. New offerings include a youth talent show, a majorette dance battle, comedy acts and live music.

Powers and his team are hoping the added entertainment and new location will receive a similar response to last year's festival.

Organizer Alia Evans said it's an event that everyone can attend and appreciate Black Culture.

“We have the Greek Festival. We have the Ukrainian Festival. We have the Puerto Rican Festival," Evans said. “And all those festivals are inclusive 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’re hoping people will come and enjoy the entertainment while supporting local Black businesses.

“We would want people to keep that in mind as they come out to patronize the different vendors,” Evans said.

The festival runs from 5 to 10 p.m. Friday, July 30, and 12 p.m to 10 p.m Saturday, July 31 at Parcel 5. Admission is free.


April Franklin is an occasional local host of WXXI's Weekend Edition.