Washington, DC recently hosted the much anticipated “Black Love Experience” at the Anacostia Arts Center, located east of the Anacostia River. Now in it’s fifth year, The Black Love Experience is a festive showcase of African American networking through entrepreneurship, community outreach and economic wellness with a focus to support Black-owned businesses. Originated and hosted by Nubian Hueman, The Black Love Experience celebrates DC’s black-owned businesses, community organizations and creatives. With Washington, DC ranked by Forbes as the number one city for economic wellness among African Americans, the event focuses on gaining economic growth, development and empowerment within the community.
Vendors lined the halls of the Anacostia Arts Center offering a large variety of merchandise and services from clothing and skincare products to cultural artwork and delicious cuisine. Live entertainment kept the crowd buzzing while attendees gathered for a night of networking, mingling and browsing the many different exhibitions presented at this years event. Among the attendees were DC City Council Member Trayon White, actress and recording artist Amanda Seales, and DC-based rapper Tabi Bonney. Farafina Kan, a traditional African drumming and dancing performing arts company were also on hand and performed a riveting traditional performance.
Moments like the Black Love Experience help stitch together black business owners’ stories in an environment that makes them realize they are not alone as they strive for better representation and opportunity. “The city is changing a lot. The whole landscape is changing. I hope that this sets the tone — not for the rest of the year but just embracing black history and black culture as it is from here on out,” said Rabia Kamara, owner of Ruby Scoops a local handmade ice cream, sorbet and dessert shop in the city.
The Black Experience is the intersection where art, activism and philanthropy meet and where African-American and African heritage is uplifted and remembered through live music performances, panel discussions, wellness sessions. This year’s theme “Passport to Wakanda” reflects black excellence through sound, art, and commerce.
– Eric Bailey (Urban Heat Advisory)
* Special Thanks to Amtchat Edwards for the invite!