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Black Arts and Culture

2016 Capital City Kwanzaa Celebrates 50th Anniversary of Kwanzaa Holiday

The Elegba Folklore Society, Richmond’s Cultural Ambassador, will present the 2016 Capital City Kwanzaa Festival on Friday, December 30 from 5-11 p.m. It will be held at the Altria Theater, 6 N. Laurel Street, Richmond, Virginia. Newly renovated and named, this venue was formerly known as the Landmark Theater.

The Capital City Kwanzaa Festival is one of the largest Kwanzaa celebrations on the East Coast. This year, the festival pays homage to the 50th Anniversary of the holiday and Dr. Ron Karenga’s message, “… Repairing, Renewing and Remaking our World.”

A series of events includes music, dance and message presented to strengthen families and galvanize the community. The African Market will be open with food and shopping. There will be children’s events, workshops and more in this nationally recognized, regionally attended observance of the Kwanzaa holiday.

The Ancestral Libation and Candle Lighting Ceremony will set the tone for the day. Attendees are invited to come and experience the Kwanzaa holiday right from the start.

Ongoing workshops for children and adults will offer perspectives toward personal and community triumph. Heritage Crafts For Children is a cornerstone of the Capital City Kwanzaa Festival.

The event’s keynote speaker is the widely respected Dr. Patricia A. Newton aka Nana Dr. Akosua Akyaa, an international specialist in behavioral medicine and a proponent of the psycho-social-spiritual wellbeing of African people. She will speak at 8 p.m.

Festival events include shopping at the African Market, filled with foods, books, unique handcrafted and imported items, art, home décor, natural body care, clothing, jewelry and more. It will remain open throughout the event.

The Opening Processional led by the Elegba Folklore Society, is at 7 p.m. Leaders will greet the audience and present an overview of each session. The Society’s performers will also offer African Dance, Music and the Oral Tradition. These dancers, drummers, and singers focus primarily on West Africa to spur an evolving understanding of the cultural and historical underpinnings of the dance and its music while showing its relationship to the United States.

The festival closes at 11 p.m.

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Advance tickets for the 2016 Capital City Kwanzaa Festival are $6, general admission, $5 for students, 12 – 18 and $5 for seniors, 65 +. At the door tickets are $7, general admission, $6 for students, 12 – 18 and $6 for seniors, 65 +. Tickets for groups (at least 10 persons) are $5. Group tickets must be purchased in advance only.

Single advance tickets can be purchased online at or at the Elegba Folklore Society’s Cultural Center, 101 East Broad Street in Richmond, VA, (804) 644-3900, where group tickets are also available. Admission is free for children under 12.

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