Goombay Celebration will be held on Market Street in downtown Asheville on Friday, September 20 from 5–10 p.m.; Saturday, September 21 from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.; and Sunday, September 22 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The free three-day event will feature all-local vendors and performers.
Goombay Celebration, a partnership between the YMI Cultural Center and the Just Folks Organization, will be held in place of the YMI’s annual Goombay Festival which will return for it’s 40th Anniversary in 2020. The theme of “Bringing it Back to the Block” refers to the fact that Goombay Celebration will be held in the festival’s original location.
As one of the oldest (if not the oldest) African American cultural centers in the country, the YMI Cultural Center holds the history of Asheville’s Black community while also supporting and illuminating black contributions being made today. “The Goombay Celebration will be community-centered,” says YMI Executive Director Dewana Little, “and will highlight the immense amount of black talent we have here in the city.”
Goombay Celebration partners are LEAF Community Arts, Garnet Prose + Projects, Asheville FM, The Urban News, and Bhramari Brewing Company. Bhramari recently released “Umquombothi,” a traditional African beer, in anticipation of Goombay Celebration. The beer was created with Rayburn Farms, a Black-owned farm, and Riverbend Malt.
For more information, visit ymiculturalcenter.org.