ZORA! Festival Shifts Into High Gear This Weekend, Welcomes Acclaimed Author Ibram X. Kendi For Special Presentation

EATONVILLE – America’s longest running arts and humanities festival celebrating the cultural contributions of people of African ancestry throughout the diaspora – the ZORA! Festival – is back and better than ever. Its signature event, the three-day Outdoor Festival of the Arts, begins on Friday, January 26th in Eatonville.

Accessibility is one of the things the event is promoting this year. The festival is free for children all three days and is free to everyone on Friday. On Saturday and Sunday, entry is $20. For HBCU students, along with those attending local colleges, tickets are 10% off with student ID. There is also free parking.

While some people may believe the Outdoor Festival of the Arts is the only event that the ZORA! Festival offers, they are mistaken. The festival, honoring beloved writer Zora Neale Hurston, is comprised of public talks, museum exhibitions, historical tours, stage performances, arts education programming, and a humanities-based conference. This year, the festival is pleased to welcome National Book Award-winning and #1 New York Times bestselling author Ibram X. Kendi, who will be giving a special presentation on Friday, January 26th at 12:15 p.m. at the Denton Johnson Community Center in Eatonville.

Kendi has adapted for young readers one of Hurston’s works, the internationally bestselling and critically acclaimed Barracoon. His other books include Antiracist Baby; Goodnight Racism; How to Be an Antiracist; and How to Raise an Antiracist. He is the Andrew W. Mellon Professor in the Humanities at Boston University and the director of the BU Center for Antiracist Research. In 2020, Time magazine named Kendi one of the 100 most influential people in the world. He has also been awarded a 2021 MacArthur Fellowship.

“Ibram X. Kendi is an intelligent man and we could not be happier to welcome him to the festival this year,” says N.Y. Nathiri, the executive director of the Association to Preserve the Eatonville Community. “It’s also refreshing to learn that he is a fan of Zora Neale Hurston. We look forward to diving into his adaptation of Barracoon, which was originally written by Zora many years ago. It is going to be a wonderful event.”

For additional information, visit zorafestival.org.