Founded over 10 years ago, Kuumba Fest began as an offshoot of the San Diego Urban Warriors' gang diversion program. Part social development, part cultural enrichment, and part self-empowerment, the program allowed founder Dajahn Blevins to teach arts to at-risk youth. They then performed a sold-out performance for the community, eventually giving way to Kuumba Fest in 1993. Now a three-day festival, this highly anticipated tradition is the country's longest-running celebration of African-American expression, culture, and heritage. Attendees can view traditional African art and pageantry as well as drama, educational workshops, and competitions as part of the event. This year's festival—held on February 14-16 at Horton Plaza—seeks to be no different; its creative roots allows over 5,000 festival goers to celebrate African-American culture in all entities. Held annually, Kuumba Fest brings together locals and visitors alike as they commemorate African-derived culture and commerce. Art aficionados will find numerous trinkets and one-of-a-kind ethnic pieces at the African Marketplace as local vendors display their homemade goods and wares. Community leadership awards acknowledge area leaders while guest speakers and artists share powerful personal stories. There is also a hip hop showcase, a gospel concert, and a tribute to the famed Apollo Theatre called "Late Night Live." Kuumba Fest has quickly become a favorite of those in the region, making it a must-see for you and your family this February.