Tue. Jun 18th, 2024

Durag Fest Charlotte shows the need to celebrate black culture

By meerna Jun12,2024

A portion of proceeds from Durag Fest go to the DuGhood Foundation, which creates programs that empower underrepresented youth.

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Creating opportunities and spaces has been Lisa Michelle’s goal from the beginning.

“The idea of ​​using Juneteenth as an opportunity to celebrate the holiday, but also to celebrate ourselves and have a space where we can express ourselves freely,” she said.

This goal is demonstrated through Charlotte’s Durag Fest, which she leads as co-founder and CEO.

“(We emphasize) the durag as a symbol that makes this possible. Often, much of our black culture can be misunderstood and appropriated,” Michelle added. “I’m excited about Durag Fest because we have so many opportunities to showcase who we are, our community, and local creators, regardless of medium, can come out and have a platform to showcase what you can do.”

Since 2018, thousands of people have come to Camp North End for the annual Durag Fest to celebrate Black excellence and meet artists from throughout the Charlotte area. The festival has grown and attracted many guests from all over the world.

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“We have a lot of people come to us from different areas,” Michelle said. “Some are from Canada, others from New Mexico, Jamaica and the Netherlands.”

However, as people flock to the Queen City, she sees it as an opportunity to reconnect with the youth. Michelle also runs the DuGhood Foundation, which is a partner of the festival.

“Be very intentional about the programs and things you create,” Michelle said. “For DuGhood, a big part of this is understanding the gap.”

A portion of proceeds from Durag Fest go to a nonprofit that creates programs that empower underrepresented youth.

“We are getting ready for back to school (and) we know one thing, that in addition to tools, an important tool is a young person’s self-confidence,” Michelle said. “One of the programs we will be doing is not only donating items, but also providing free hair (and) clothing services to young children so they feel confident when they walk down the hall.”

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He hopes to not only create opportunities for young people, but also provide space for them to ultimately achieve more.

“We want to have important conversations within our community that will continue to move the horizons forward,” Michelle said.

This year, Durag Fest will last two days. They will take place on June 21 and 22 at Camp North End.

Contact Nick Sturdivant at [email protected] and follow him on Facebook, X and Instagram.

By meerna

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