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Posted on: September 13, 2019

Press Release: Kunta Kinte Festival on City Dock Sept. 28


Mayor Gavin Buckley


Public Information Office

160 Duke of Gloucester Street

Annapolis, Maryland 21401


For Immediate Release:      

Media contact: Mitchelle Stephenson, 410-972-7724 or


Kunta Kinte Festival on City Dock Sept. 28

 Annapolis, Maryland (September 13, 2019) – The Kunta Kinte Heritage Festival will return to City Dock for the 30th year on Saturday, September 28, 2019 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. The festival is for all ages to celebrate perseverance, education and cultural heritage of Africans, African Americans and Caribbean people of African descent.

Kunta Kinte is the protagonist in Alex Haley’s seminal novel, “Roots: The Saga of An American Family.” In the story, Kunta Kinte was one of 98 slaves brought to Annapolis aboard the ship Lord Ligonier in 1767. Despite many years in bondage, he never lost his connection to his African heritage. Kunta Kinte's experience symbolizes the struggle of all ethnic groups to preserve their cultural heritage.

In Roots, Haley revisits the oral histories told by his grandmother of an ancestor named Kunta Kinte who landed in Annapolis in 1767. Haley’s book spent 46 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list, selling more than 1.5 million copies. In 1977, the television mini-series of the same name launched a boom in the field of genealogy. “Roots” earned a Pulitzer Prize, nine Emmy awards and a Peabody.

The September Kunta Kinte Festival in Annapolis features 80-plus arts and crafts vendors, food, education and community information booths, two performance areas, a children’s tent and more. Admission is free, but organizers encourage a suggested $5 donation.

The event is held at City Dock and Susan Campbell Park. Major sponsors include: the City of Annapolis, Live Casino and Hotel, Anne Arundel Community College, Chesapeake Children’s Museum, Lamore Lifestyle, Koons Automotive and Global Journey for Children.


Parking will be closed at City Dock and Donner Lot beginning Saturday morning and for the duration of the Kunta Kinte Festival. Immediately following the festival, parking restrictions continue as the Annapolis Boat Shows are staged and set up. The entirety of City Dock will be closed to parking and vehicular traffic throughout the Power Boat and Sailboat Boat Shows, which run through October 15.

Free festival parking can be found at the Calvert Street Garage at 19 St. Johns Street. A shuttle will run from the corner of Calvert and Clay Streets at Whitmore Park, down to the festival at the Kunta Kinte-Alex Haley memorial statue. Paid parking can be found at Hillman Garage, Gotts Garage, Knighton Garage and Park Place Garage. The free Circulator will run on a 20-minute schedule. Download the Circulator APP for Android or iPhone to track the Circulator’s current location. For detailed parking information, visit


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