The Eastern Shore AFRAM Festival 2014 will bring living history, the Community Recognition Award and traditional African arts and culture to Sussex County. The festival takes place from 5 to 10 p.m., Friday, Aug. 8, and from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 9, at the Seaford Sports Complex, 600 Market St. Ext. in Seaford.
This year’s festival showcases African-American history and culture featuring the United States Colored Troops (3rd Infantry Regiment Civil War re-enactors) from Philadelphia, Pa., and a returning exhibit by the Buffalo Soldiers Motorcycle Club of Delaware.
The Seaford Historical Society will be the 2014 Community Recognition Award recipient for its research and documentation of the Harriet Tubman/Tilly escape through Seaford in October 1856. The Akoma Drummers of Takoma, Md., will perform traditional West African drumming and present a drumming workshop.
The Friday night schedule includes such classics as AFRAM’s Family Feud-style game show, Churches’ Challenge, and the Little Miss/Little Mr. AFRAM Pageant, followed by live music from On the Edge, the premier dance band of Ocean City, Md.
Saturday’s schedule begins at 10 a.m. with Mascot Mania, a family-friendly event introduced in 2013, which includes free breakfast for children ages 3-10, a stage show at 10:30 a.m. and games with favorite mascots. All children must be accompanied by an adult to participate.
AFRAM’s Car & Cycle Show also returns for the second year. Visit the Events page at www.easternshoreafram.org for more event details and schedules.
The weekend music lineup includes Friday with On The Edge, which was formed in 1984 and quickly became Maryland Eastern Shore's favorite dance band. Their busy schedule takes them up and down the East Coast. The band is popular for its high-energy presentation with a wide variety of hits from ‘60s Motown to modern pop tunes and everything in between.
Taking the stage on Saturday will be the Sankofa Drummers & Dancers. Energetic and exciting, the Sankofa African Dance Company is composed of talented and creative youth from inner city Dover.
The Akoma Drummers proudly study and present music of the African diaspora - the origin of all people and all music - ranging from traditional West African to funk and D.C.’s own go-go. The group plays djembe, kpanlogo, conga and dunun drums with dancing and songs.
Tony Smith and the You Know How We Do Crew will also perform Saturday. The music of Tony Smith and his band satisfies the souls of gospel and jazz lovers alike and has become a staple of music lovers at the Eastern Shore AFRAM Festival. Smith and his host of talented musicians reinvent the art of gospel instrumental, incorporating elements of jazz, gospel and classical music.
Finally, Best Kept Soul’s sound is always live, never programmed and geared toward drawing emotion, passion, and energy from every audience.
For more information, contact Eastern Shore AFRAM Festival Executive Director Pat A. Jones, P.O. Box 687, Seaford, DE 19973; email firstname.lastname@example.org, call 302-628-1908, or go to www.easternshoreafram.org.