A very wise person once asked the deep, philosophical question: Who run the world? That same sage soul answered the ultimate question: girls. That's right, ladies, we run the world. It's high time everyone gets the memo.
We jest, but in all seriousness, being a woman is a special thing and it's not celebrated enough. That's all about to change with the first ever LadyFest Miami.
Gently put, LadyFest is a community event put together wholly by women for women with the overall goal being to "build a sustainable community and celebrate diversity through critical dialogue, cultural performance, and artistic expression within the context of a women-centered space," explains one of its many organizers, Charo Valero.
The two-day long festival aims to be inclusive of all sorts of women -- from women of color to people of all sexual orientations and gender identities, from people of faith to the single ladies. Basically, if you're a woman or love the ladies (boys, that means you too), LadyFest is for you.
"We chose the name LadyFest because it taps into a global DIY music and arts festival that has been around since 2001," says Valero, but it is still "inclusive of all women and their allies."
One of the most important aspects of LadyFest is how it's completely organized by volunteers. Valero likes to say how it's a do-it-yourself festival, because "everything from the website to the workshops we have lined up was done by people volunteering their time and expertise to work on this shared vision and project." Their team even made the posters themselves.
"It's an anti-consumerist movement that empowers our collective to be more creative and brings others into the vision -- that's what grassroots organizing is all about!"
Before LadyFest came about, Valero comments on the lack of events dealing with female empowerment and education -- and those that do exist seem to be focused more on drinking and the party scene. "LadyFest was born out of a need in Miami to create a space that would unite our fragmented community of women...there was a huge need for women-centered spaces -- spaces that focused on celebrating and healing women," she adds.
Whereas other festivities might see the need to promote the cocktails, Valero and her team want to promote "education, transformative dialogue, community building, and essentially push our community forward."
Not to worry, though, there will still be plenty of drinks at LadyFest, you'll just feel more cultured while sipping on your cosmo, especially during Friday night's kick off mixer. As Valero describes it, "Friday is an evening of speed-friend-ing and live performances. Saturday is a series of workshops, lectures, panel discussions, live entertainment, and artistic events -- all by and for women -- focused on empowering and healing women." There will also be a swap-shop of sorts on Saturday where attendees can donate clothing and even pick up any necessary items from the pile.
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The weekend festival is "not so much about promoting womanhood as it is celebrating it."
LadyFest kicks off Friday, September 19, with a mixer at The Light Box starting at 6 p.m. The full day of activities begins at 11 a.m. on Saturday, September 20 at LAB Miami. For tickets and a complete schedule of events, visit ladyfestmiami.com.
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