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Lexington, Kentucky
Roots & Heritage Festival

Roots & Heritage Festival

Various venues


For the entire month of September, the Roots & Heritage Festival (RHF) lights up the streets of Lexington, with a diverse schedule of events celebrating the city’s African American heritage.  Its centerpiece is a two-day street festival that takes place along historic Elm Tree lane, beginning with a parade that lasts through the first evening.

The street festival also features an African Marketplace, a number of children’s programs, and two stages of entertainment.   The remainder of the Festival includes performances of music, comedy, dance and theatre, as well as exhibitions of art and sport; these events take place at various locations throughout the city of Lexington.

The Lexington Roots & Heritage Festival began in 1989 as a small neighborhood street fair, and over the past two decades has grown to a major cultural event, recognized by the Kentucky Tourism Council as one of the state’s Top Ten Festivals to attend. Past artists that have performed on Stage I at RHF include Alex Haley, Les McCann, Little Milton, Bobby Womack, and Freddie Jackson.

Roots & Heritage Festival Information

  • Public Transportation: Varies by venue
  • Handicapped Accessibility: Depends on venue
  • Performances/Programs: Approximately 20 events including concerts, comedy, lectures, workshops & the Parade
  • Ticket Prices: All events are free to the public.