Ten festivals fans can’t wait to return

Wednesday, September 1st, 2021 00:00 |
Festivals fans can’t wait to return.

Safaricom International Jazz Festival

The former Safaricom chief executive officer and a staunch jazz fan, the late Bob Collymore, will forever be remembered for his legacy of making the Safaricom International Jazz Festival one of Kenya’s music success stories.

The event, which used to happen annually on International Jazz Day on May 1, was last held in 2019 at the Nairobi’s Carnivore grounds with various notable jazz musicians thrilling the fans with live stage performances.

They, included Jonathan Butler, Jimmy Dludlu, Kunle Ayo, Salif Keita, Chris Bitok, Kavutha Asiyo, Aaron “Krucial Keys’ Rimbui and Eddie Grey.

Jazz enthusiasts have been anticipating for its resumption following its suspension due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Koroga Festival 

The last edition of the music picnic event Koroga Festival was held at the Hells Gate National Park in Naivasha, on February 15, 2020, just a month before the first Covid-19 case was announced in Kenya.

It was the festival’s 29th edition and marked among the last of big events to be held in the country just before the pandemic hit home.

Held quarterly by Capital FM, it aimed at celebrating African music, food, art and fashion, and brought in the form of a concert and open boutique market.

The event stood out by hosting artistes such as Alpha Blondy, Koffi Olomide, Diamond Platnumz, Kanda Bongo Man, Yemi Alade, Awilo Longomba, Manu Dibango, and Papa Wemba among others. 

Concours d’Elegance

Held every last Sunday of September at the Ngong Racecourse in Nairobi, the iconic classic cars and bikes showcase used to attract more than 10,000 motoring enthusiasts from across the globe.

Organised by the Alfa Romeo Owners Club and open to all makes of cars and motorcycles, its the snappiest event on the Kenya Motor Sports Federation calendar with additional attractions, including a children’s entertainment centre, live band music, flypasts, a parade of all the Concours cars and motorcycles, and a grand finale after the prize giving.

The latest one took place on September 29, 2019, marking the event’s 49th edition. 

The Cake Festival

An event of its kind in Kenya aims at displaying all the cakes and desserts that are available in the market.

It involves convergence of bakers, exhibitors and sponsors who are passionate about all things baking.

The money collected from the ticket sales funds different charities, so you get to enjoy delicious cakes while helping others.

In addition to this, it showcases the talent of amateur and professional bakers as well as to educate the public on different kinds of cakes and desserts.

Blankets and Wine

With the hit of the pandemic, the music picnic event had to switch to the new normal where the artistes perform virtually.

The event used to occur every first Sunday of the month, gaining popularity as one of Nairobi’s most popular music events.

It started in 2008 when musician Muthoni Ndonga alias Muthoni the Drummer Queen decided to host Sunday picnic-styled events to promote local artistic talent.

Everyone attending was simply supposed to bring a bottle of wine, picnic basket and a blanket.

Nairobi Restaurant Week

The festival is mainly about dining at some of Nairobi’s best restaurants at highly discounted prices.

Restaurant week is a ceremony in many cities around the world and lasts for about 10 days in Nairobi.

Here, restaurants showcase their special menus with several courses and different companies partner to offer free drinks and cocktails.

The last one happened in 2019, and now foodies can’t wait to sample local and international cuisines in leading restaurants all over again. 

Lamu Cultural Festival

The event is one of the best-attended community-based cultural festivals in Kenya, seeking to promote the rich Swahili culture.

Taking place every November, the three-day bonanza is meant to give visitors a taste of the Swahili life at its natural best.

The activities, include sailing races, donkey races, traditional henna paintings, poetry readings, music performances, coastal culinary and competitive bao games—which is regarded as one of the oldest games in history with research showing that it has been played in the region for thousands of years.

Safari Sevens

The celebrated annual rugby extravaganza held in Nairobi debuted in 1996. It hosts international representative sides, professional and amateur clubs, invitational teams, university and school teams.

It last happened in 2019 through the title sponsorship of East African Breweries’ beer brand, Tusker.

It had the participation of national teams from Zimbabwe, Zambia, Namibia, Uganda, and Burundi, and club teams Samurai Select, Western Province (South Africa), Russia Academy, Seventies (France), Blue Bulls (Wales), and Narvskaya Zastava (Russia). Kenya Morans (Kenya Sevens junior side) beat their South Africa counterparts Blitzboks 19-14 in a thrilling final.

Maralal International Camel Derby

The three-day event is an attraction to many. Kenyan tourist authorities were promoting cultural tourism through expanding and promoting events, such as the Maralal International Camel Derby to encourage tourist income to filter into more rural areas.

The location for the derby is among the hills and valleys of the northern Samburu area, which makes a beautiful backdrop for the exciting races and contests that take place there, with riders coming from all over the world to participate and enjoy the cultural demonstrations and spirit of reconciliation in the region. 

StoryMoja Festival 

This is a festival for lovers of arts and music. The event is scheduled to happen every September, and it hosts top local and international musicians and writers.

Masterclasses, book readings and showcases happen during the days, while different musical acts crown the day with their performances.

The fest is also a chance to showcase and buy books, art pieces and meet your favourite authors.

Previously, the StoryMoja Festivals were held at the Nairobi National Museum, but the 2015 event was moved to Nairobi Arboretum.

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