Events

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African Heritage Week promises unforgettable experiences in tourism.


Well-known for the many exciting opportunities to explore its ecosystem and natural beauty, Costa Rica is also an ideal place for culture tourism. Costa Rica is a beautiful Central American country with breathtaking sceneries, abundant wildlife, stunning beaches, and peaceful national parks.

A multi-ethnic paradise, the richness of Costa Rica has roots in the cultural diversity of its people. In addition to the majority Mestizo population (primarily European descendants), inhabitants also include people of African Chinese, Lebanese and Italian heritage all living among the native people of Costa Rica.

With the African Heritage Festival taking place in August, now is a good time to combine a nature tour with a journey into the vibrant culture of the African descendants who live there. Known as Afro-Costa Ricans, over seventy thousand people or 3 percent of the population are of African descent.  Afro-Costa Ricans have had a great impact on the development of the country into what it is today. 


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From August 6-8, the Quays of the Old Bay in Montreal will once again be filled with the sultry sounds of reggae music. Yes, the Montreal International Reggae Festival (MIRF) is back with another amazing platform of Caribbean music excellence. “This year we have created a sense of lasting legacy by showcasing internationally respected Caribbean musicians, whose music continues to bring people from all walks of life together,” says MIRF President, Eric Blagrove.

Drummers

Immerse yourself in the rich culture of Ghana in West Africa. Just 15 kilometers from the Ghanaian capital of Accra, the 2010 KUSUN Study Tour, an alluring educational synergy in West African drum, dance, and song, commences in the village of Nungua.

In the language of the Ga people, the word ‘Kusun’ means tradition. The KUSUN study tour has attracted international students since its founding in 1998, fulfilling its mission of sharing African tradition with people around the world.  With as many as 350 people participating in the tour every year, students have the opportunity to meet people from all over the world who share in the love of West African music and culture.

MVAAFFMartha’s Vineyard offers vacation fun and delightful experiences in black culture and heritage tourism.

Martha’s Vineyard is certainly a dream vacation for beach fun, fishing, romantic and family getaways, destination weddings, business and culture retreats, birding, sailing and fantastic cuisine. If you have been thinking about visiting this desirable vacation spot in Massachusetts, now would be a good time to go to enjoy the African-American Film Festival and to explore the rich African-American heritage trail.   

The African-American film Festival will be going on Aug.11-14 in Vineyard Haven, Edgartown and Oak Bluff in Martha’s Vineyard. Guaranteed to be educational as well as entertaining, the festival takes place over four days with about 45 film screenings throughout Martha’s Vineyard. People from all over the US and some from abroad are expected to attend as they have for past festivals.  Included in this year’s festival at the Mansion House will be ‘The J. H. Gun Project’, ‘The Night We Died’ and the sixty-minute film ‘Up From the Bottom.’

NBAF

For over twenty years the National Black Arts Festival has been celebrating talent in literature, music, dance, theater, film and visual arts. From July 14-18, the summer festival will feature an all-star lineup of international musicians, over 100 different artists from around the world and entertainment for young inspiring artists.

CubaFiesta

It is said that the people of Santiago, Cuba, Santiaguerros, are known for their party spirit. And so it is no surprise that Cuba’s Fiesta del Fuego (Fire Festival), a week-long celebration of Cuba’s colorful history and cultural influences, is held in Santiago, Cuba’s second largest city, every year the first week in July. 2010 marks the 30th year since the inception of the festival in 1981 and the party begins on July 3rd and doesn’t stop until July 9th.  

The carnival features an international parade where countries all over the world are represented and an academic exchange and panel, where international scholars and experts discuss issues related to identity and culture.  But of course, the Fiesta del Fuego is celebrated Cuban style- rhythmic music, performances by local, national and international artists on various stages, vivacious street dancing, and expressive art of every genre.

The idea for the festival, which was first presented in 1981, began as way to celebrate the African influence on Cuban culture along with other cultural influences including Spanish, Asian and Arab influences. On a larger scale, the Fiesta del Fuego festival serves to unite all the people and countries of the Caribbean, Latin America and the world.

DrumminginCubaEvery year the festival highlights a particular region of influence. This year, the Cuban government plans to pay tribute to Curacao and the Pernambuco region of Brazil. Also to be celebrated is the 100th year anniversary of Mexican Revolution and the bicentennial of Mexico’s independence.

Tourists can expect an authentic Cuban party. For 7 days and nights, during the Fiesta del Fuego, the rum never runs out and vibrant music coupled with jubilant dancing continues until the wee hours in the morning.

More info on this festival can be found out:

www.globalexchange.org/tours/997.html

Stunning Natural Settings and Top African Cinema, Music, and Arts

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World class films with an African focus, international music presentations, and stunning natural settings await you at the 13th annual Zanzibar International Film Festival (ZIFF) on July 10th-18th in Zanzibar, Tanzania. With the theme “Hopes in Harmony,” ZIFF is the antithesis of a Western-style film festival and is a must-visit for the savvy film and art buffs, where you can also get to immerse yourself in some the country’s culture uniqueness. In no other festival is there such a unique chance to learn about Africa’s cultural past and present in such a relaxed and exotic setting.

 

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For only three days out of the year toward the end of June, from the 17th to the 19th century,  the black slaves of Venezuela, brought from Africa to work the coffee and cocoa plantations, were permitted a break from their daily toils.  It was during these three days, in honor of patron saint, San Juan or St. John in English, that the overworked African laborers along the coasts of Venezuela could come together to eat, dance, play music, and to revel in relaxation and celebration.

 

cricketwi

2010 is warming up to be an exciting year for world sports. Cricket fans across the Caribbean have been pouring into local stadiums, building up momentum for the international competitions that will play out in the third leg of the season. West Indies is eager to move up in the International Cricket Council's rankings by outshining its worthy rival, South Africa, in the Digicel Series playing May 17 through June 30. South Africa's top-ranking team will spark local thrill throughout the hosting islands as the Windies play "one of the best teams in world cricket with some of the best players," notes Dr. Ernest Hilaire, CEO of the West Indies Cricket Board.

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Escape to the sunny islands without leaving Montreal! The most prestigious Caribbean culinary event in Canada, A Taste of The Caribbean Festival promises to be one of the most exciting with a dazzling array of fun and activities for the entire family. The 11th anniversary of this event will happen on Sunday May 30th for one full day at the Place Bonaventure in Montreal. The festival brings people of all ages, different backgrounds and walks of life together to share and celebrate the spirit and captivating culture of its Caribbean community.  The only culinary arts festival of its kind in Canada, A Taste of the Caribbean Festival celebrates the Caribbean Diaspora and promotes the Caribbean culture.

AfricaDayinDublin

The 2010 Africa Day, a celebration of African unity, initiative, and progress commences in Atlanta. This first-time in Atlanta event taking place May 22-25, promises to be a tremendous cultural, educational and entertaining celebration. The city of Atlanta, a focal-point for progressing Africa-US relations, will welcome representatives from the African Union and other nations of Africa. Celebrating Africa Day in Atlanta is an endeavor to build strong ties between the U.S. and Africa through cross-cultural initiatives such as tourism, commerce and investment, foreign student exchange, the arts, and other activities that promote cultural awareness.

A combination of conferences, seminars, cultural exhibitions, and a parade will take place

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Now is the time to visit Senegal as it hosts the 18th International Saint Louis Jazz Festival from May 20th-23rd! This annual festival is one of many celebrations that commemorate the 350th anniversary of the city’s independence from France. Considered the most important jazz festival in Africa, jazz legends and new musicians from around the world come to play in various venues throughout the city. Here is where you can enjoy some of the world’s best jazz, exotic food, all kinds of art and crafts, culture exhibits and also some African drum-beat dancing. But first you will have to cross the Faidherbe Bridge, the pathway to the city.