For How Long Will Big Night In Little Haiti Go On?
In last April, Rhythm Foundation announced that after a 5 year run, the organizers have run out of money; they cannot anymore organize monthly festivals of music, art, food, and culture. There will be no gBig Night in Little Haitih which was for some years since 2012, a big event with some of the most important names in the Haitian community -- musicians, artists, and activists--a free party to participate third Friday, every month.
The event started in 2012 with a financial support, of gone year grant of $125,000h from Knight Foundation. The foundation again provided $120,000 to cover expenses for 2013 and 2014. And finally in 2015, Knight Foundation provided another $60,000 which dried up in September.
Each monthly event used to cost averaging $10,000, covering all expenses like payment for the bands and performers, sound, lights, on-site staff, insurance, police, security, supplies, clean up, and marketing efforts. The Rhythm Foundation reached out to the community and tried to raise enough funds to sustain the event but the efforts were fruitless. The foundation even posted online, including Instagram, requesting sponsor for the event and unsuccessfully sought funding from the city of Miami and local businesses.
The news of rejoice came in August, just three months later. Thankfully, after a brief hiatus of the show Beck's Urban Canvas came forward as a sponsor to bring back the event as a free celebration and hence the mourning was over.
The beer company Beck's donated $20,000 to salvage the defunded Big Night in Little Haiti. Beckfs Urban Canvas partnered with South Florida nonprofit Rhythm Foundation to relaunch the monthly free music and arts series that celebrated art, music, culture, and food at the Little Haiti Cultural Center.
On last November 5, 2016, Rhythm Foundation and Rasin Festival celebrated the return of Big Night in Little Haiti as an annual Festival. The festival featured legendary voudou rock enf roots band RAM, rasin mizik bluesman Paul Beaubrun, Kazak featuring Inez Barlethier, Voudou Lakay, Tradision Lakou Lakay, Nancy St Leger Dance Co, and many others.
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