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Free Festival Alert: Palestine Festival 2017

Photo: Zaatar Bread making demonstration and sampling

On April 29 you’re invited to enjoy the 2nd Annual Palestine Festival at the Overton Park Greensward.

The festival will feature authentic Palestinian cuisine, live music, dabke performance (dancing), a fashion show, henna tattoos, a traditional clothing photo booth along with other cultural activities and vendors. Food is available for purchase from food vendors at reduced prices. This festival is organized by a dedicated group of volunteers and possible with the generous support from the local community of individuals, small businesses and organizations. Their mission is to encourage learning of Palestinian culture to break barriers and cultivate understanding and unity between Palestinian-Americans and the greater Memphis community. Admission to the festival is free, but please bring some cash for the various vendors.

Photo: Palestine Festival

Photo: Palestine Festival

  • When: Saturday, April 29, 10am-3pm
  • Where: Overton Park Greensward
  • Rain date: Sunday, April 30, 10-3pm at Overton Park E. Pkwy Gazebo
  • Cost: Free, bring cash for vendors

Festival Schedule:

  • 10:00- 10:30am    Opening Remarks and National Anthems
  • 10:30- 10:35am    Palestinian Poetry Reading (Heba Ibrahim)
  • 11:00- 11:30am    Musical Performance by Jonatan Gomes (on the oud)
  • 11:30- 11:45am    Palestinian Songs
  • 12:00- 12:45pm    Dabke Performance (traditional dance)
  • 1:00- 1:15pm        Musical Performance by Jonatan Gomes (on the tableh)
  • 1:30- 2:00pm        Fashion Show (featuring traditional and modern clothing)
  • 2:00- 3:00pm        Dabke Performance (traditional dance)


There will be many food vendors selling traditional Palestinian food (at special affordable prices). Some of those include local favorites such as Casablanca, Ali Baba, ZamZamz and Tom’s BBQ… yes you heard that right, Tom’s BBQ will be serving up their bbq with a special Palestinian twist. Also there will be a coffee tent offering free samples of Arabic coffee and a zaatar bread making demonstration booth also with free samples. If you are a foodie with a sweet tooth be sure to stop by one of the booths selling traditional Palestinian sweets. One of the sweets most specific to Palestine would be knafeh, a rose water sugar-syrup soaked cheese pastry. Critics have referred to it as the “deep dish dessert pizza of your wildest dreams”.



Group Dabke

Group Dabke

Be sure to wear your dancing shoes because there will be opportunity to join in after each Dabke (traditional dance) performance. There isn’t anything that Palestinians love to do more than dance! The traditional Arabic dabke dance has specific steps for every country and region. We will teach you how to do the Palestinian Dabke.

Cultural Booths:

There will be a section of the festival dedicated to learning about Palestinian culture through Palestinian embroidery, crafts, a photo booth (where you can try on the clothing and take a photo), a henna booth, Arabic language tent and more! Most of these activities are free!

Merch Vendors:

Want to take something cool home with you from the festival? Then be sure to check out the various merchandise vendors who will be located at the festival. PaliRoots (coming from California) and Watan (coming from Chicago) sell the coolest modern Palestinian swag, so of course they will be there! There will also be a vendor selling some items with Palestinian embroidery. Don’t forget to buy your one-of-a-kind Palestine Festival t-shirt designed by local artist Eso Tolson.

Helpful Tips:

  •  Most venders will be cash-only so be sure to bring some cash for your purchasing opportunities.
  • There will be overflow parking at the First Baptist Church Memphis (Poplar and East Parkway) with a free shuttle
  • In case of rain, the date time and location will be as follows: Sunday, April 30, 10-3pm at Overton Park- E. Pkwy Gazebo
  • Make sure to use #901PalestineFest for social media sharing!

For more info on this festival visit the official website as well as event page..

See more international events in Memphis here.

See more April events in Memphis here.

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