Festivals are the much anticipated way to indulge in the Miami culture and when you add top recording artists like CeeLo Green, Monica and Keyshia Cole, you have discovered one of the Summer’s hottest events in Miami, the Overtown Music and Arts Festival (OMAF). This festival is one not to miss and last year it attracted an audience close to 10,000. The OMAF is a perfect fit with something for festival goers of any age and is great for the entire family to enjoy … plus it’s free. Also taking to the concert stage will be RL of the sensational R&B group Next, Latin Jazz & Afro Caribbean Rhythms artist Tito Puente, Jr., and Reggae Group Inner Circle.
Created in 1999 by the Southeast Overtown Park West Community Redevelopment Agency, the street festival has grown to become an annual event that is adored by local Miamians as well as visitors. The Overtown Music and Arts Festival was originated to expose the unique offerings of the Overtown community. It is touted to not only bring back music and arts to the Historic Overtown neighborhood, but also to promote economic development and community enrichment. Overtown is one of Miami’s earliest historical black communities, once prominently known for black businesses and a national entertainment destination.
The festival returns to Overtown on July 15, 2017 and will feature components like a concert Main Stage hosted by R&B sensation Monica Brown, T.E.E.S. (Teens Exercising Extraordinary Success) Youth Zone with do-it-yourself art for children, fitness activities, competitions, bounce houses, a multi-lingual story time tent, live cooking demonstrations, as well as Overtown businesses and vendors showcasing artwork, ethnic cuisine, food trucks, and unique crafts.
Miami-Dade Public Library System joins the festival this year with their Technobus, which brings digital services and devices for a hands-on experience for festival goers, according to Festival Promoter Michael Gardner of Headliner Market Group. ”We are expanding our Art Zone this year, incorporating a lot of interactive components to the festival. We will have a large canvas curated by the Kern Firm, highlighting Overtown past and present where festival goers can add their creative touch.”
New to the festival is the OMAF Art Expo Zone and a BBQ Cook-Off Competition. The Art Expo is a live art demonstration which will allow artists an opportunity to engage in conversation with festival goers and will feature artists like Alejandro Guzman and Alfrensa Moosa. These artists will perform live art instillations before the festival goers. This zone will showcase colorful paintings, photography, multi-dimensional mixed media works, pottery and hand crafted jewelry by local artists.
The BBQ Cook-Off Competition will put festival goers’ taste buds to the test. They will get to play judge and cast their votes for the best barbeque of the 2017 Overtown Music and Arts Festival. Local restaurants will provide samples of their ribs in an effort to win the 2017 competition.