Black Infant Health is presenting its 6th annual Black Joy Parade in downtown Oakland on Feb. 26. It is the largest family-friendly gathering in California that’s free and celebrates the Black experience.

The event positively celebrates the Black community’s contribution to culture. It is loaded with all sorts of live entertainment, art and food vendors. The event features a parade, sponsored activations, dancing, games and more.

The Black Joy Parade is a movement. It is a commitment to celebrating Black culture and empowering Black people to love themselves. 

Photo Credit: The Black Joy Parade

“Historically, movement fuels movements,” Black Joy Parade founder and proud Oakland resident Elisha Greenwell said. “During the past 20 years, we’ve seen movements begin online — powerful ideas shared through words and images that rallied support nearby. But, it wasn’t until those ideas manifested physically that they could drive change. Folks took to the streets, sang their hearts out and danced in unison to create the change they hoped to see. The movement to normalize Black joy is no different. To propel Black Joy Parade’s mission forward, we must use every physical tool — our voice, bodies, art and expressions — to share the joy we hope to inspire in others.”

Considering this event is the only one in California, organizers want to make Oakland a premiere travel destination. The Black Joy Parade has the potential to attract people from across the country. Each year the event gets bigger and sponsors continue to invest more into it. The parade exemplifies what it could be when we all rejoice in positivity and celebrate one another.

George Clinton & The Parliament Funkadelic

This year’s headliner for The Black Joy Parade is the Parliament Funkadelic featuring George Clinton.

The Parliament Funkadelic is a group from New Jersey who known to be the originators of psychedelic funk. Starting in the late ’60, they have inspired many musicians and have been sampled in the music of today. Artists, like Dr. Dre, Kendrick Lamar and Snoop Dogg, always pay their respects to The Parliament Funkadelic through their music.

George Clinton is considered to be the face of The Parliament, known for his big shades, colorful hairstyles and funky clothes. George and The Parliament coined the phrase, “We bring the funk.”

Oakland and Black Culture

The city of Oakland has made many integral contributions to Black history for many years.

In the late 60’s, the Black Panther movement started in Oakland. They invested a lot of their time educating communities about the strength of unity. The first Black female vice president is also from Oakland. Before entering the White House, Kamala Harris had influence, and she continues to use that influence to encourage young Black women. Some of the hip hop legends in the music industry has also come from Oakland. Artists, such as Mac Dre, MC Hammer, Too Short and Shock G, have all hailed from the city. 

Oakland’s rich history makes it the perfect backdrop for this occasion. The Black Joy Parade wants everyone of all races and walks of life to attend to celebrate Black culture in its entirety.

Black Infant Health Organization

The Black Infant Health Program supports Black women in California through pregnancy and teaches them how to make healthy choices for themselves and their newborn babies. They aim to improve Black infant and maternal health through education and therapy. This program is available in different cities throughout the state of California and more facilities will continue to open as they’re able to continue to create awareness.

Make sure you visit to learn more about the festivities for this upcoming weekend.