The Egbe Festival delivered a bit of Africa to Virginia Key Beach (video story included)

In the Yoruba language, Egbe translates to “team.” This past weekend, several local groups cooperated to hold the Egbe Fest on Virginia Key Beach in celebration of African culture and entertainment. 

Ifawuyi Esuloju Eyioriwaase, curator of the cultural celebration, started it in 2017 after having a spiritual experience. She said she wanted to educate others while bringing them together.

“The reason why we named the festival “Egbe” Festival is because we want people to know that when we get together, we become one people, one tribe, one fraternity,” said Eyioriwaase, a life coach, priestess, humanist and herbalist in holistic medicine.

The festival provides a way for African Americans and other black-ethnic groups within the diaspora who are unaware of their African ancestral identity to connect with their culture while enjoying food, live performances, ceremonial acts and more. It is a collaboration between Spiritual Essence, a nonprofit organization, and Key Beach Park Trust, a board appointed by the Miami City Commission. 

Although Eyioriwaase currently finances the event on her own, she said she has “a powerful force” of a team that helps stage it. Despite the rain and cold during the event on Feb. 1, Eyioriwaase said she will continue making the Egbe Festival an annual tradition for years to come.

Amanda Bazil is a culture reporter, blogger of The Blavidual Mindset, and the co-host of Womxnhood, a podcast ran by the Women's Center at FIU. When she's not working, she's dancing or boxing.

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