Ninth Annual Life is Living Festival at deFremery Park 

This month, Oakland’s creative scene is dutifully dominated by celebrations of the Black Panther legacy. But the organizers behind the Life is Living Festival, which takes place annually in West Oakland’s deFremery Park — or, rather, “Little Bobby Hutton Park” — have been building on that legacy for the past nine years. Always beginning with its own iteration of the Panthers’ Free Breakfast Program, the free, day-long festival continues on for hours of cultural uplifting in various forms, from spoken word to healthcare information. This year’s fest — which will take place this Saturday, October 8 —  is the best yet, and features a robust lineup bursting with Black talent. Aside from a main stage headlined by legendary hip-hop innovators The Coup, the festival will feature a separate hip-hop stage curated by Town Park and Town Futurist; a “front porch” stage featuring performers such as Chinaka MC and Young Ella Baker; and an Africa in Oakland stage with a range of diasporic dance groups. Meanwhile, the Theater Zone will provide of full day of free productions and spoken word, and the Victorian at the center of the park will serve as a stage for a conversation between former Panther Ericka Huggins and Black Lives Matter activist Cat Brooks, among other political conversations. To round it out, there’s a Kids Zone, a Creativity Zone, a Book Zone, and a Food Justice and Wellness Zone. It’s easily one of the most vibrant events of the year.

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