SOUTH PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- The nation's largest Black and African cultural festival returns to South Philadelphia next week.
The Odunde Festival brings roughly a half a million people to South Street every year.
The organizer of the event, Oshunbumi "Bumi" Fernandez-West, says this year's festival will be bigger than ever.
Her mother, Lois, started this festival with just $100 and a desire to celebrate the richness and diversity of the city's African and African American cultures.
"This is the 48th Odunde," says Fernandez-West. "I was a year old when Odunde started in 1975. I was strapped to my mother's back on the very first day. Now, I carry Odunde on my back. I have a lot of humility and a lot of pride that Odunde has survived this long."
Tuesday at City Hall, the Universal African Dance and Drum Ensemble from Camden New Jersey got everyone in the spirit with music and dance.
The festival kicks on Monday, June 5th and culminates on Sunday, June 11th with a massive celebration at 23rd and South Streets.
It covers 15 blocks and features over 100 arts and craft vendors with goods from Africa, the Caribbean and Brazil.
"What began as a small gathering of 50, now attracts nearly half a million visitors from around the world," says Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney. "It has a $28 million economic impact on the city of Philadelphia."
There are two live music stages, with Grammy winner Chrisette Michele performing on Sunday, June 11th at 7 p.m.
For more information, visit: OdundeFestival.org.