The 4th Annual Baton Rouge Soul Food Festival will take place Saturday and Sunday, June 26 and 27 at Riverfront Plaza located at 300 River Road South, Baton Rouge, LA 70802. Festival hours are 11:00am to 8:00pm on Saturday and 11:00am to 7:00pm on Sunday. The family friendly event is free to the public and features blues, soul, R&B and gospel music, a Vendor’s Village and a judged soul food cooking competition. Lawn seating so bring your chairs. VIP tickets that include food, soft drinks, photo ops and a reserved seating area are $25.00 per person. VIP tickets for two that include T-shirts, music downloads and additional perks are $100.00. For additional information call 225-802-9681 or visit www.brsoulfoodfest.com.
A Greens, Beans and Chicken Wings Pre-Party will be held Thursday, June 24 at Henry Turner Jr.s’ Listening Room from 8pm to midnight. The venue is located at 2733 North Street, Baton Rouge, LA 70802. Tickets are $25.00 and include a buffet and soft drinks. The show is a sneak peek of the talent lineup for the festival.
Bands and solo artists, to date, are the blues, soul, funk reggae band Henry Turner, Jr. & Flavor and the Listening Room All-Stars featuring singer/songwriter Larry “LZ” Dillon, spoken word artist ‘Nspire and the Inspire band, comedian Eddie “Cool” Deemer, gospel/jazz artist Wyanda Paul, gospel/soul singer Pastor Leon Hutchins, R&B singer Xavie Shorts, reggae artist Simon Oguinye, blues greats SmokeHouse Porter and Miss Mamie and singer/songwriter Malerbee. Additional acts include Texas based R&B singer Lady Bain and folk/blues singer Jonathan Foster from California. Whitney Vann will co-host the stage. Rebirth Film Shield Productions and My Dog Jack Productions will video graph the event. More acts will be announced closer to the date.
The Soul Food Cooking Competition, highlighting regional favorites from Louisiana, Texas, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia and Florida include Meats, Vegetable and Side Dishes, Breads and Desserts, Appetizers and Soups, Beverage and Ices. Criteria includes Presentation, Taste, and the Story or History behind each dish. Ten entrants in each category will be pre-selected by the Soul Food screening committee. Upon acceptance the entry fee is $20.00, $30.00 for walk-ups, if slots are available. Contestants need to bring enough food for six people the day of their judging. First, second and third place prizes will be awarded in each category. The contest is now open and downloadable forms and additional instructions are available on the website. Vendor slots are also still available.
This years’ Pioneer Award for contributions to the Soul Food industry is Lizzie Griffin, in whose memory Lizzie’s Restaurant was founded in 2014, by her children Ricky and Kwanda Griffin.