Big Night in Little Haiti has been saved! Somewhat. After The Rhythm Foundation failed to raise enough money to continue the monthly event, Beck’s beer company donated $20,000 to relaunch it as an annual roots music festival. The first Big Night in Little Haiti Roots Festival is November 5, 2016. For more information, visit The Rhythm Foundation website.
Original post May 14, 2015: Let’s Give Big to ‘Big Night in Little Haiti’
Every third Friday for the past five years, Big Night in Little Haiti has brought the masses to the Little Haiti Cultural Complex to enjoy a free night of Haitian music, art, and culture. But the party is in danger of being over. The original grant that funded Big Night in Little Haiti is finished, and The Rhythm Foundation is hoping to raise $60,000 this summer to keep the program going for another season. They’ve started a YouCaring crowdfunding campaign and are asking for your help.
You can make a donation here:
Big Night Celebrates, Enriches the Community
Big Night in Little Haiti is a source of pride. Housed at the Little Haiti Cultural Complex at NE Second Avenue and NE 59th Terrace in Miami, Big Night in Little Haiti is one of the few consistently visible efforts to showcase and celebrate Haitian music, art, food, and businesses to the wider South Florida community. Countless musical acts have graced the outdoor stage in the last five years. Hundreds of attendees have strolled through the complex’s gallery and appreciated the variety of artwork on display. And when the rara gets going, crowds have danced and chanted their way out of the courtyard and into the night. It’s a beautiful, electric atmosphere.
Big Night Changes Perceptions
I don’t know how many times I’ve brought people to Big Night in Little Haiti and they’re surprised. Haitians and non-Haitians alike are surprised that the Little Haiti Cultural Complex is a great venue. Surprised that so many people are in attendance, from local residents and foreign tourists to families, hipsters, and elderly couples.Surprised that they’re having a great time hanging out in a courtyard, dancing to konpa music, and downing Prestige beer with griyo and diri ak pwa. Surprised that they’re in the heart of Little Haiti, and it looks a lot different from what they see on the news.
It’d be a shame to let Big Night in Little Haiti disappear. I encourage you to help sustain this cultural event by making a donation today. Every dollar counts:
In the meantime, I hope to see you on a third Friday.