Da’African Village, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization based in California and Nevada, in partnership with Africa Love, a Las Vegas-based retail store committed to promoting and showcasing the best of Africa, is hosting its 2nd annual celebration, A Touch of Africa Las Vegas. The 2-day event will highlight African culture through African dance and drum workshops, musical performances, an African fashion show, vendor bazaars, an African after party and so much more!
This family-friendly event will feature performances from African dance companies: Olabisi African Dance & Drum Ensemble of Las Vegas, NV, Le Ballet Dembaya of Los Angeles, CA, and Thiossane West African Dance Institute of Columbus, OH. The first day’s events will take place at the Clark County Library Theater, 1401 E. Flamingo Road, from 6 to 10 p.m., with a full day of dance and drum workshops taking place on day two at the University of Nevada Department of Dance, 4505 S. Maryland Parkway, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Africa Love and Da’African Village are gaining popularity within the Las Vegas community due to an abundance of community-focused events. The organizations are staying true to their mission of “bringing Africa to the world” through cultural immersion and bridging the gap between Africans and African Americans.
To catch you up, here’s a list of events/programs offered by Da’African Village and Africa Love:
- Annual Kwanzaa Celebration
- Annual Black History Month Celebration
- Weekly African Drum classes held Friday nights at Africa Love in Towns Square Las Vegas and are taught by djembe master, Kenneth Brown II
- Monthly Drum Circles held on the first Saturday of each month at the park in Town Square Las Vegas
- Bi-monthly Pan-African Soul Sessions (P.A.S.S.) which are forum-style conversations hosted by Dre’chir Whitfield, Cultural Ambassador of Da’African Village.
- Annual pilgrimage to the Motherland, a 12-day spectacular tour of West Africa
- Africanized events – from naming ceremonies to initiation/rites of passage ceremonies we make celebrations memorable.
- You may have also caught Mara vending at various cultural events in and around Las Vegas.
In an effort to better understand the motivation behind the organization, I was lucky enough to sit down with Serigne “Mara” Diakhate, president and CEO of Da’African Village and owner of Africa Love. Originally from Senegal, Mara has been in the US for over 21 years with two of those years being in Vegas. Though he has only been in Vegas for a short time, his impact has been major. He saw an opportunity to create diversity and is now helping to bring African culture to our communities.
Author: Alexia Brown is a freelance writer who has a passion for content creation and connecting with her clients. She is currently working with Africa Love and Da’African Village.