Rise Up Festival celebrates revitalization of St. Louis Aug. 17

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Enjoy local food, art and music at the seventh annual Rise Up Festival celebrating revitalization efforts in the St. Louis area from 2 to 11 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 17.  

“There’s an affordable housing crisis all over this country, and mixed income neighborhoods are the most successful in this country, so we are trying to make St. Louis a stronger and more equitable place to live,” said Larry Perlmutter, festival producer and communications and development manager for Rise, the nonprofit that organizes the event.

The festival will feature a variety of activities, food, drinks, entertainment and music.

“Downtown St. Louis needs more festivals, and this also helps promote local businesses, and there’s just so many things to do that are fun,” Perlmutter said. “There’s an art show, food vendors, artisan vendors, entertainment all day, and there’s just a lot of fun things for kids and adults to do all day.”

This year’s celebration will have 13 food vendors, including 314 The City Bar, Chez Mathy, African Cuisine, Scoops and More, Simply Sweet Sensations, Whisk, MO Tamales and more.

“We’ll have Caribbean food, popsicles, tamales, kettle corn, barbecue, Liberian food and just some really cool stuff to eat,” Perlmutter said.

There’s also an art showcase, flying trapeze performances, a fire show at 8 p.m. and plenty of children’s activities, including face painting, balloon artist and airbrush tattoos.

“We’ll also have some Rise mission-based arts activities and Rise awareness booths because we do this to bring awareness to the need for revitalization in St. Louis and how our mission supports that purpose,” Perlmutter said.

Entertainment includes Corey Melton as Michael Jackson, DJ Kut, comedian Dulo Harris, The Movie, a tribute to Prince and Marvin Gaye, and headliner Tobe Nwigwe, among others.

“Tobe Nwigwe is a nationally known act, and we chose him to headline because of his mission, which is to ‘make purpose popular,’ and he’s a clean rapper, so he never uses any curse words in his rap,” Perlmutter said.

Darian Stevenson is an editorial intern at Sauce Magazine.

Sauce Magazine is a sponsor of Rise Up Festival.