Thousands attend annual Odunde Festival on South Street

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Thousands attend annual Odunde Festival on South Street. Annie McCormick reports during Action News at 6 p.m. on June 11, 2017. (WPVI)

In its 42nd year, thousands descended on South Street to celebrate the Odunde Festival Sunday.

Even in the heat, the people came out, and found a way to keep cool.

The event spans twelve city blocks with hundreds of craft and food vendors plus music and various performances.

This year organizers honored several local and state politicians and community members.

This is the largest African American street festival in the country.

"This particular festival started by Miss Lois Fernandez so many years ago. It was based on the Nigerian culture, and she decided to bring that culture from Africa to here to South Philadelphia, but more specifically to the city of Philadelphia as a whole, so people could experience that Nigerian culture, the food, the clothing and all the things that come along with it." City Councilman Kenyatta Johnson said.

The festival is in Councilman Johnson's district. He like many others call this an annual tradition.

"This is part of the fabric of South Philadelphia. I grew up coming to this festival as a kid." Councilman Johnson said.

Aisha Ahmed of West Philadelphia said, "It's important for the culture. It's important for us to express ourselves. And it's important to give back to the entrepreneurs who are out here working hard, and bringing us all the treats and stuff that we tried."

The Festival ends at 8 p.m.
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