· By Mackenzie Brown
FIVE DAYS AND NIGHTS OF CELEBRATING DIVERSITY IN OUR GREATER COMMUNITY
Coming to Charleston in August
CHARLESTON, WV (July 12, 2023) - People living in and around Charleston and thousands more who visit West Virginia’s Capital City will have a greater chance than ever this August to celebrate diversity and all that makes our community a more vibrant, attractive and exciting place to be.
In its 33rd year, Multifest – West Virginia’s largest celebration of diversity – will be the greatest one yet as it expands for the first time ever to four days and nights in Haddad Riverfront Park and on Kanawha Boulevard from August 3 – 6. To add an exclamation point to that celebration, the Charleston Dirty Birds will host their 4th annual African American Heritage Night during their first game back home after Multifest on Tuesday, August 8 at GoMart Ballpark.
“Together, through the collective efforts of the teams coordinating African American Heritage Night and Multifest, we are helping bring more people to GoMart Ballpark and diversifying Charleston’s entertainment offerings while also fostering cultural awareness and providing greater visibility to the folks helping to create positive change in our Capital City,” said Mayor Amy Shuler Goodwin. “Ultimately this planning effort and these events are all about bringing people together.”
Mayor Goodwin joined the leaders of Multifest and African American Heritage Night at a news conference this morning at GoMark Ballpark where a new mural of Toni Stone, a pioneering African American woman and professional baseball player from Bluefield, West Virginia, was unveiled earlier this year.
“We are very happy to join with African American Heritage Night to continue the celebration that Multifest will lead in Charleston,” said Multifest President David Fryson. “We believe it is a good connection and extension of our brand and the high-quality experience that Multifest brings to Charleston, this region, and the State of West Virginia.”
“Since I moved here from Kentucky late last year, I’ve been increasingly impressed with all of the activities that make Charleston a truly vibrant and amazing place to be,” said Dirty Birds’ owner and CEO Andy Shea.“This year’s expanded celebration of our diversity, heritage, arts, and culture shines a pretty bright light on the future of our city, and your hometown baseball team is proud to be the cleanup hitter on August 8.”
Multifest leads off the expanded celebration with Go–Go Night featuring the EU Band on Thursday, August 3. Friday, August 4 is “Ladies Night” featuring Keke Wyatt and Sunshine Anderson. Saturday, August 5 promises a full lineup from the afternoon through the evening with Yo-Yo, Next, Lyfe Jennings and Jon B. Multifest concludes its entertainment lineup along the river on Sunday, August 6 with Crystal Rucker, Yung Joc, and Gap X The Band, followed by fireworks at 9:30 p.m.
As with every season of Multifest, local entertainers also take the stage for full days of memorable performances while dozens of vendors offer up great food, and great deals on many high-quality products.
With a theme of “For the Kids. For the Future,” African American Heritage Night at the Dirty Birds game will feature a young nationally acclaimed dancer, FikShun, during a pregame performance that will impress fans of all ages. He won the 10th season of “So You Think You Can Dance” and will headline a pre-game talent showcase including local performers.
Event organizers have raised money to offer hundreds of free food coupons for kids and free books by West Virginia authors Renée Ecckles Hardy and Rachel Saunders Saar. Younger fans will be able to enjoy hands-on activities and fans of all ages can get information and screenings to promote better health. The Dirty Birds’ lineup will use special commemorative bats during that night’s game with proceeds from an auction going to Step by Step West Virginia.
160 Academy Driving, Astorg Dealership, City National Bank, Appalachian Power, C.O.R.E., Charleston Convention & Visitors Bureau, Chase Bank, DOW Chemical, Elco Mechanical Contractors, Element Federal Credit Union, Encova Foundation, Goodwill, Herbert Henderson Office of Minority Affairs, Highmark Blue Cross/Blue Shield WV, Huntington Banks, Pepsi, University of Charleston, WCHS 8/Fox 11, West Virginia American Water, West Virginia Army National Guard, West Virginia Lottery, West Virginia Press Association, West Virginia State University, West Virginia University, WSAZ, WVRC Media.
AFRICAN AMERICAN HERITAGE NIGHT SPONSORS:
AARP – West Virginia is the presenting sponsor of African American Heritage Night. Hall of Fame sponsors include: The Greater Kanawha Valley Foundation, Charleston Convention and Visitors Bureau, YWCA of Charleston’s Center for Racial Equity and Inclusion, and the City of Charleston Mayor’s Office. All-Star sponsors include: Element Federal Credit Union, Dow, West Virginia American Water, and 10 in 10 CWV. Partners also include the Partnership of African American Churches, Step by Step West Virginia, and 107.3 the Beat.