Magic City Radar Weekend Review
By: T. D. Davis
Culture was the name of the game in entertainment this weekend in Birmingham, with a number of events taking place that brought citizens together in an array of venues from art to salsa dancing to live soul music in Birmingham’s historic Ensley district. Here’s recap of the weekends’ events:Artwalk, held on Saturday, September 12, is an arts festival that transforms Birmingham’s Loft neighborhood into an arts festival featuring work from over 100 visual artists, musical and street performers, food and drink vendors, and children’s activities. Through the goodwill of area businesses and the work of a dedicated staff of volunteers, Artwalk hosts established and emerging regional artists in downtown Birmingham.
The show was indeed intricately organized, with exhibits featuring amazing conceptual detail, and free admission helped to ensure that this year’s attendance approached the ten thousand attendees of the previous two years. Unfortunately, while the event does hold true to its website, http://www.birminghamartwalk.org, tout as a medium in which, “art lovers will see original work in all mediums from the affordable to the extravagant”, the event fell short in offering works that were reflective of all cultures, including the rich African American and Hispanic cultures inherent in the city of Birmingham. Our hope is that future versions of the event will accomplish this end.
To that end, “Salsa Night” at Legends Sports Lounge, 230 18th Street North, set a precedent for the city by bringing together members of every cultural group for a night of Spanish food, music, and dance. Those who did not knowhow to salsa dance were treated to performances by the many members of the Hispanic community in attendance that were adept at the movements.
The many “ooo’s” and “aaa’s” heard among those not participating in dance indicate that interest should temper in the future. If those outside the Hispanic community learn the dance, it could give birth to an more exciting, interactive event. We hope that this event continues to grow in years to come, as it provides great entertainment and could serve as a catalyst for improved relations between Birmingham’s Hispanic and broader communities. For more information on Legend’s Sports Lounge, visit it’s website at foursquare.com/legends_lounge.
The “Paul Anthony” fashion show was hosted by the City of Fairfield Civic Center on Sunday, September 13, 2015. Attendees got a look at the designer’s fall collection and were treated to a fantastic buffet and the smooth sounds of local R&B artists. A smaller, more intimate setting would have given the show more of a “Fashion week” feel, but all in all the show was fun.
Finally, the “Ensley Live” festival in the historic Ensley entertainment district,hosted by City councilman Marcus Lundy, offered food, music, prize giveaways, and reunion for new and old members of the community. This event stoked the fires of those interested in Birmingham’s rich Soul, Blues, and African American history, enabling them to take a trip back down memory lane, into our present, and forward to what lies ahead.
September 11-13 was a weekend chocked full of entertainment happenings, many of which offered a taste of the varying cultural groups and mores present in our city.