Article by: James Johnson

July 4, 2017 - New Orleans, LA - - If you don’t do anything else in your summer months, you want to try and make it out to Essence Fest. It’s an extravagant time when celebrities come together to celebrate not only African American culture, but also the history of Essence Magazine. The event first began in 1995 as a celebration of the 25th anniversary of the magazine.


We were blessed to attend and provide media coverage at the 2017 Essence Festival, and at the very least, the event was absolutely amazing. It all began with an opening from none other than the beautiful Halle Berry, and things skyrocketed from there. There were celebrities, and celebrities, and more celebrities, and millions of fans who filled the Ernest N. Moriam Convention Center to celebrate all that is Essence.


Beginning Friday, June 30, each day was filled with a barrage of events, celebrity panels, press conferences, and more. There was more than enough to keep everyone from every age group satisfied. Sponsors included Coca Cola, and Walmart, who in addition to having an elaborate soundstage set up, also had cash registers and employees set up to sell a variety of items, including albums and more from many of the artists featured throughout the entire weekend. Buying those albums gave you an opportunity to meet and greet with many of your favorite artists throughout the event.


All events during the daylight hours were free for all.  The night time events, naturally, were another story, as they included full concerts from many of the celebrities in attendance over the weekend, including Jill Scott, Mary J. Blige, Diana Ross, John Legend, and so many others. We have many pictures to show that can be viewed here at and below. You can also check out some of the press conferences, which included the cast of Girls Trip with Queen Latifah & Jada Pickett Smith, Queen Sugar with Ava Duvernay, Spike Lee’s Netflix reboot of “She’s Gotta Have It”, and more.


If you missed it all this year, it’s ok. Now’s a great time to start getting things in order for next year’s event.