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Where and How to Celebrate Kwanzaa

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By Bob Levin on December 6th, 2013

Categories: Popular Cities

Since its inception in 1966 and first official celebration in 1968, Kwanzaa has served less as a religious holiday in competition with Christmas or Hanukkah than as a cultural touchstone for African-Americans seeking to reconnect with their distant cultural past. Over the years it has evolved into a celebration of Black culture in America, marked by performances by some of the greatest artists alive, and it’s a perfect excuse to book some hotel deals to see some electrifying performances, no matter your background. Here are some suggestions for where to celebrate this cultural phenomenon.

New York: American Museum of Natural History

With plenty of cheap hotels in the area, a quick trip to The Big Apple rewards with you the 35th annual celebration of Kwanzaa at the American Museum of Natural History, featuring storyteller Linda Humes, Ugandan poet Emilia Ottoo performances from the Broadway hit Motown the Musical, the IMPACT Repertory Theatre, award-winning filmmaker and bestselling author MK Asante and a screening of his film narrated by Maya Angelou, The Black Candle: A Kwanzaa Celebration.

Kwanzaa in Paris

The biggest Kwanzaa celebration outside of the United States is the perfect excuse to discover hotel discounts and jet off to the City of Lights. Sponsored by the Association Pan Africaine, the 2-week celebration includes guest speakers, musical performances, and lectures designed to culminate in a truly Parisian appreciation for African and French-African cultures.

San Francisco: All Week Long

The City by the Bay dedicates one day to each of the seven principles Kwanzaa with events and performances through the city – and with hotel deals waiting to be discovered. From City Hall to the Public Libraries to the Hamilton Rec Center, Kwanzaa-centric events are occurring each day from December 26 through January 1st.

Kwanzaa is much more than a holiday, it’s a cultural event that can be enjoyed by anyone – this is the year to discover a whole new holiday!

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