Africa FEST

Page updated on Aug 19, 2019 at 2:20 PM

Saturday, September 7
noon–5 p.m.
Patrick Henry Recreation Center
4653 Taney Ave.

Join us for a free communitywide celebration of Africa through dance, music, food, crafts and culture. Traditional African attire is encouraged.   

Africa FEST is presented in collaboration with the African Union Mission to the United States of America, Smithsonian National Museum of African Art, the Pan-African Diaspora Women Association and Youth Association, Alexandria Black History Museum.  

An International Affair

Africa FEST 2018Several African ambassadors and dignitaries will participate in Africa FEST ceremonies and embassy staff will be on-hand with cultural displays and interactive activities.


There will be drop-in hands-on activities all afternoon. Smithsonian National African Museum of Art leads sessions about African games. Teresa Brunson leads two painting workshops, 1:30–4:30 p.m. and Ni Dembaya West African Drum and Dance Company teaches a drumming and dancing workshop at 1:30 p.m. Vendors will also be selling traditional food. 

Nigerian-American singer/songwriter Janeliasoul is the mistress of ceremonies. She will keep visitors engaged throughout the afternoon for a whole host of activities (subject to change):  

  • Noon: Official Welcome and traditional Ethiopian coffee ceremony with elected officials, dignitaries and special guests. This ceremony marks the Ethiopian New Year, which will be on September 12.
  • 12:30 p.m.: Ni Dembaya West African Drum and Dance Company performs and leads the parade of nations showcasing 55 African flags, symbolizing unity and pride of the continent.
  • 1:30 p.m.: VUSA: Voices from Southern Africa performs a cappella choral selections from South Africa and other Southern African nations.
  • 2:30 p.m.: Chosen Generation, an African dance youth group, performs dances from Cameroon.
  • 3:30 p.m.: Ethio Dankira performs traditional music from Ethiopia and Eritrea.
  • 4:30 p.m.: Janeliasoul performs in her signature Nigerian soul and Afrobeat style.
  • 5 p.m.: Closing Remarks.

Special Thanks

Sponsors for Africa FEST are African Union Mission to the USA, Kathy Wilson Foundation, Gold Works by David Martin; West End Business Association, Marta Ali Studios and The Zebra

For reasonable disability accommodation, contact or 703.746.5592, Virginia Relay 711.