The 2018 Essence Festival® presented by Coca-Cola today debuts expanded brand experiences within its daytime programming—offering new consumer activations curated by partners Coca-Cola, AT&T, Ford, McDonald’s, State Farm and Walmart that take place from July 6-July 8 at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans, LA.
The Festival’s daytime programming features a diverse slate of curated content across eight “Conference & Expos” tracks: Community & Culture, Beauty & Style, Entertainment, Entrepreneurship, Tech, Wealth, Wellness & Spirituality, and Shopping. Plus, celebrity meet-and-greets, musical performances, interactive panel discussions and over 50 engaging consumer activations round out the weekend event.
Download the 2018 ESSENCE Festival® app for updates and to customize a schedule of Festival highlights, which include:
- ESSENCE Beauty & Style featuring the ESSENCE Beauty Carnival. Tutorials and seminars with celebrity beauty experts and icons, and fashion presentations with style trendsetters, complimentary style consultations, mini makeovers, giveaways and more with partners: Walmart, the Official Beauty Expo Retailer; My Black Is Beautiful; Unilever; Aveeno; Maui Moisture; Creme of Nature; Palmer’s; Shea Moisture; Carol’s Daughter; Cover Girl; Gold Bond; Strength of Nature; and our Beauty Bungalow sponsor, Cantu.
- ESSENCE Entertainment All Access. An exclusive first look at the hottest movies and TV shows and participation in cast talk-backs and appearances at Center Stage, the Fan Zone and the Screening Room with partners Disney, 20th Century Fox, Annapurna, BET, HBO, Paramount, Showtime, Starz, TNT, as well as the film titled, She Did That sponsored by Walmart.
- ESSENCE Empowerment Experience. Keynotes and panels featuring today’s most prominent leaders, creators, and influencers, such as Lena Waithe, Mary J. Blige, Iyanla Vanzant, Reverend Al Sharpton, Angela Rye and many more, covering topics spanning inspiration to activism and more.
- ESSENCE Path to Power. Free and open to the public, the Path To Power will offer daily general sessions, 40+ workshop style intensives and networking opportunities for entrepreneurs and business professionals at all career levels. Programming partners include AT&T, State Farm, J.P. Morgan Chase, US Army, New Voices Fund, Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA), National Urban League, United States Black Chamber, YWCA, and Accenture.
- ESSENCE Lifestyle Experience. ESSENCE’s lifestyle editors and industry experts showcase the best in health and wellness and encourage living a healthier and happier life with partners AARP, American Airlines, Susan G. Komen, New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corporation and the State of Louisiana.
- ESSENCE All-Star Gospel Tribute. Inspirational performances by top gospel artists, including Marvin Sapp, Smokie Norful, George Potts Young & the Church Friends Band and more in tribute to Dottie Peoples sponsored by Walmart.
- ESSENCE Eats. A taste of local cuisine, fellowship and celebrity chefs preparing their specialty dishes with partners Walmart, Diageo and Gold Peak.
In addition, the Marketplace will host more than 150 entrepreneurs from across the globe. Also taking place throughout the weekend will be brand-sponsored events and engagements that include:
- Coca-Cola: Share a Coke® at ESSENCE Festival
Share a Coke with your girlfriends at the 2018 ESSENCE Festival®! Join Coca-Cola® at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center and experience a world of endless refreshment, uplifting music, dancing, interactive programming, photo experiences and much more! #CokeEssenceFest
- AT&T: Dream In Black with AT&T
When you dream in black you power the possibilities. AT&T is serving up celebrity meet-and-greets, musical guests, and prize giveaways. Drop by with your squad and Dream in Black with us for an unforgettable Festival experience.
- Ford: Celebration and Sisterhood: Our 10th ESSENCE Festival
For our 10th year running, Ford is proud to celebrate sisterhood at Essence Fest! Visit our space to learn how Ford continues striving to empower women to Go Further. Plus, register for a chance to win a brand-new Ford vehicle!
- McDonald’s: McDonald’s Black Forward Experience
McDonald’s® returns to celebrate you and all that you do to move Black culture forward! Join us at the Black Forward Experience for live performances, giveaways, and endless inspiration. For more info, visit 365Black.com, and download the McDonald’s App for additional exclusives.
- State Farm: State Farm® Color Full Lives
State Farm® has the financial tips and tools you need to live your most Color Full Life! Stop by our space to envision your future and achieve your dreams. State Farm is here to help you #LiveColorFull.
- Walmart: Rule On Your Time
Reign over your household with grace and ease. With Walmart’s Grocery Pickup you can order groceries online and pick up, for free, on your time. Get your rule on, learn more at Walmart.com. #ReignOn
Join the Festival community by following us on Twitter, @essencefest #EssenceFest and become a fan of 2018 ESSENCE Festival® on Facebook. For more information about ticket sales and accommodations and for the latest news about the ESSENCE Festival®, visit www.essencefestival.com.
The ESSENCE Festival® is executive produced by ESSENCE Festivals LLC, a division of ESSENCE Communications Inc., and is produced by Solomon Group. Sponsors of the 2018 ESSENCE Festival® in New Orleans include presenting sponsor Coca-Cola and major sponsors AT&T, Ford, McDonald’s, State Farm and Walmart.