One word describes my experience attending my first ever Essence Festival last weekend—-WOW. I’m usually on the sidelines each year reading about the fun that others are having during the event, and this year, thanks to Colgate, I was able to finally able to enjoy my first ever Essence Fest. Known as one of the most popular and most attended events of the summer season, the Essence Fest is a culmination of entertainment, empowerment, and education. During the day, there is plenty to do including visiting booths, listening to speakers, learning during training and educational sessions, and of course there are the celebrities always walking about. There is so much that I can write about when it comes to my first Essence Fest excursion, but it would be too darn long to post here. So I thought about sharing with you my five favorite moments from the festival. These a moments that I will remember for a long, long time to come.
#5 McDonald’s 365Black Awards
Oftentimes in the media, we always here about the negative when it comes to people of color. But there are plenty of positive things happening in our community, and positive people who are using their gifts to help others. Each year during the Essence Fest, the McDonald’s 365Black Awards are held in order to honor those individuals who are impacting our world for the better. I was able to see the honorees and other distinguished guests on the golden carpet and I also attended the taping of the awards show, which will air on BET on 8/10 at 10pm EST. It was awesome to see so sisters and brothers being acknowledged for doing good works. For a recap of the McDonald’s 365Black Awards, check out the my piece on Think Positive.
#4 Media Room
The Essence Fest brings out so many celebrities, so it was awesome to be able to get up close and personal with them in the media room. This is a section which is off limits to Essence Fest attendees, but if you have media credentials and are approved, then viola! You are able to chill in the media room and get photos and interviews. Thanks to my friend, Raijean, I was able to get to hang out in the media areas of both the festival and the concert. Access, baby!
#3 Jill Scott
A huge part of the Essence Fest is the music of course. And each night, a bevy of your favorite artists entertain on the main stage and in the superlounge. It was my first time seeing Jilly from Philly perform and O-M-G! She is a beast! She not only performs but morphs into the music serving up different versions of her songs than what you may be used to. She is epic on the stage and I think she might’ve changed my life. It was a great time!
#2 Sisterhood with Colgate
As a blogger for Colgate, I was able to attend the Essence Fest. I was alongside some fab bloggers who were all there to help spread the word about the goings on in the Colgate Booth and in the Empower U area. I had never met these bloggers before, so it was a real treat to work with them and get to know them better. We created our own little sisterhood that weekend, which is something I will always remember. We also got to meet and spend time with Colgate’s experts (Dr. Catrise Austin, Nicole Marie Melton, Tanya Whitfield, and Denise Warren) and mingle with them during the Colgate Conversation. Good stuff!
Prince. The name says it all. And since I am such a HUGE Prince fan, I was over the moon about seeing him in concert. And when I say he didn’t disappoint. He performed many of his hits including Let’s Go Crazy, Kiss, Raspberry Beret, and even Purple Rain. I will never forget his performance as long as I live. AMAZING!
Days later, I am still coming down from my 2014 Essence Fest high. I am so looking forward to attending next year, as I know it is something I am not going to want to miss. Did you attend the Essence Fest this year? What were your favorite moments?
Disclaimer: I am a Colgate Blogger Ambassador and have been compensated for participating. All opinions expressed in this campaign are mine, and are not indicative of the brand(s) mentioned.