Essence Festival kicks off in New Orleans to celebrate and empower women of color

ByRachel Brown KABC logo
Friday, June 30, 2023
Essene Festival kicks off in New Orleans to empower women of color
ABC7 is in New Orleans, where thousands of women will gather for The Essence Festival of Culture!

NEW ORLEANS -- ABC7 Los Angeles is in the fabulous city of New Orleans, where for the next five days, thousands of women will gather for what has become an annual pilgrimage of sorts: The Essence Festival of Culture!

Disney is a proud sponsor of the Essence Festival, and is proud to showcase the event's sisterhood and city of New Orleans.

"News Orleans is just the perfect place for Essence Festival, we're excited to be down here and to be a part of it. It's a city like none other. The culture is so rich and unique," said Adia Matthews, the VP of Brand Partnerships and Synergy-Hulu.

The theme of this year's festival: The Power of Joy.

Essence Magazine was first published in May 1970, and for decades has been an inspiration for women of color across the nation and around the world, reminding people that beauty comes in all shades, and that we are Powerful.

As part of the celebration at Essence Fest, the New Orleans convention center will be filled with vendors, as women search for the latest in beauty, fashion; health, food and fun.

"It is a celebration of just the breath of who were are as Black women. And I think we all know we are not a monolith, and so what's really great about Essence festival is that we get to celebrate everything about a Black woman our personalities, our culinary experiences.. but the sisterhood is just so real," said Jan Coleman the VP of Global Brand Marketing Partnerships at Walt Disney Studios.

But Essence Fest is also about purpose and community, featuring many discussions on everything from education to economics and entertainment.

And speaking of entertainment, one of the most popular events for Essence Fest is the concerts! It began back in 1995, as part of the magazine's 25th anniversary. But it was such a huge success, that it became an annual event.

And this year, the festival is celebrating the 50th anniversary of Hip-Hop!

This year's performers include Megan Thee Stallion, Janelle Monae, Missy Elliott and Ludacris.

If you can't make it to New Orleans, you can still be part of the fun! You can watch those concerts, Essence Fest Primetime via a livestream on Hulu.

Hulu is owned by the same company as this ABC station.

The Essence Fest, although a celebration for an by women, will have events for the whole family. Yes, guys too!

We will continue to bring you coverage of the festival throughout the weekend.

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