Grand Rapids African American Art and Music Festival draws crowds at new location for 2021

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – The Grand Rapids African American Arts and Music Festival brought a variety of food, entertainment and creations to downtown Grand Rapids on Saturday, September 25th.

The one-day event at Studio Park in downtown Grand Rapids began on Saturday lunchtime.

“We have a festival that has been going on for over 40 years just to immerse our community in culture, dance, music and all the things that are expressive to blacks,” said festival director Lisa Knight.

The Grand Rapids Public Library, Children’s Museum and Grand Rapids Fire Department were some of the groups present to connect with hundreds of passers-by.

The festival has been held in Grand Rapids for more than four decades, historically Calder Plaza or Martin Luther King Jr. Park, but this year there have been some changes.

Knight said this year’s event was held at Studio Park to enable COVID-19 security protocols. All festival visitors were strongly advised to maintain social distance and wear a face mask, regardless of their vaccination status.

“We’re coming back,” said Knight. “We can build together as a community, support one another and participate in all the wonderful aspects of an individual culture.”

You can find more information about the festival at

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