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Essence Festival 2008: The Ultimate Party Weekend

The Grownest – Sexiest weekend of the entire year is here! Essence Music Festival, the “Party with a Purpose” returns to the Big Easy for the 14th time July 4th – 6th, 2008.
I moved to New Orleans for school in 1997 and I’ve been attending Essence Festival ever since. (It was a little too grown and sexy for me back then, but I’m ripe for it now!) If you’ve never attended before, you will see more celebrity and star power than I personally think you would see for say an NBA All-Star or Superbowl weekend. Expect to see men in linen outfits of every pastel shade with open toe sandals and on the women, every outfit in Bebe’s window…at least twice. Because let’s be real….grown and sexy to some = linen and lycra!

Anywho, Essence staff go above and beyond to make this not only an entertaining weekend but also an educational one. So you can receive all your community information in the day and get groovy at night. Below is a schedule of events.


Seminars @ Ernest N. Morial Convention Center
Friday – July 4th featuring: Tyler Perry, Mayor Ray Nagin, Keshia Knight Pulliam, Lynn Whitfield, and the cast of House of Payne
Price: FREE

Saturday – July 5th featuring: Al Sharpton, Dr. Bill Cosby, Dr. Poussaint, Tom Joyner, Sheryl Lee Ralph, Bishop TD Jakes, Ed Jordan
Price: FREE

Sunday – July 6th featuring: Mikki Taylor & Dr. Jaunita Bynum
Price: FREE

Concerts @ New Orleans Superdome
Each night is hosted by: Jonathan Slocumb
Friday – July 4th
Main Stage: J. Holiday, Rihanna, Chris Brown, Kanye West
Coca Cola Superlounge: Big Sam’s Funky Nation, Terence Blanchard, Peabo Bryson, Grandmaster Flash, Mint Condition, rebirth Brass Band, Christian Scott
Price: $56, $67, $72 Floor Seats: $83, $110

Saturday – July 5th
Main Stage: Musiq, LL Cool J, Jill Scott, Patti Labelle (Labelle reunion with Sarah Dash, Nona Hendryx, Angie Stone, Ledisi, Chrisette Michele. Irma Thomas & Ruby Amanfu)
Coca Cola Superlounge: Irvin Mayfiels, Lyfe Jennings, Kermit Ruffins Band, Solange Knowles, Ledisi, Cupid
Price: $56, $67, $72 Floor Seats: $83, $110

Sunday – July 6th
Main Stage: Morris Day, Keyshia Cole, Chris Rock, Mary J. Blige, Frnakie Beverly and Maze
Coca Cola Superlounge: Raheem Devaughn, Chrisette Michele, Micholas Payton, Preservation Jazz Hall’s Gospel Revival, Irma Thomas, Gil Scott-Heron
Price: $56, $67, $72 Floor Seats: $83, $110

This post would be so incomplete without offering you the Late Night party information. These are the events I have so far. (If you have anything to list, we’d be happy to post it. Our readers are coming a long way to party…they need options!)

chocolate-bar_july-08.jpgThe Chocolate Bar
July 4th 8p. – until
540 S. Broad (5 blocks from the Superdome)
“The All White Experience” Another Adonis Expose and Jeff Williams Event

boris.jpg10th Annual All White Affair
July 5th 10p.m. – 5a.m.
Ray’s Over the River – #1 Canal St
Hosted by: Boris Kodjoe
General Admission – $35 VIP – $50
*Dress to Impress*

bon-voyage.jpgGrown and Sexy Mid Day Cruise
July 5th 1p.m. – 5p.m.
Creole Queen Dock behind Riverwalk Mall
Boat leaves at 1:30p.m.
$39.99 plus tax
*Attire: Grown & Sexy! You will be on t.v.!


DJ Captain Charles @ Harrah’s Casino
July 4, July 5, & July 6
Corner of Canal St. and Poydras
Doors are always OPEN
Party starts @ 10p.
**FREE** <-- Because its free it will be packed! I learned that NBA All-Star weekend.

amazemint.jpgThe Amazemint Lounge
Presented by Alize and Covergirl
July 5 4p.m. – 8p.m. @ The W Hotel on Poydras
Featuring Biz Markie
RSVP to: amazemintrsvp@gmail.com

If you venture down and attend the festival…leave us a comment and let us know how it was!


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