“This year we’ll be dancing in the streets,” said Tommy Jacquette, executive director of Watts Summer Festival, Inc. (WSF). Organizers are taking it to the streets, literally, with the time-honored event to be held on 103rd Street from Success Avenue to Compton Avenue.
This summer will mark the 42nd anniversary of the summertime event, that takes place with free admission and parking on Aug. 8 – 10, 2008 from 12 – 8 p.m. daily.
The theme for the 2008 festival is “Watts: Our Place in History,” a reference to the contributions made by its citizens to the history of Los Angeles and to the world.
The Watts Summer Festival is one of the positive outcomes of the 1965 Watts Revolt. Originally organized by members of the Jordan High School Alumnae Association, it has been sustained by the efforts and commitment of its Executive Director, Tommy Jacquette.
Activities planned for the 2008 family event are traditional favorites for all ages including the daily concerts, community forums, a children’s village, carnival and a special concert featuring Charles Wright (“Express Yourself”) and the vocal stylings of Phyllis Battle.
Although the event begins on Friday, Aug. 8, the official opening ceremony will be held on Saturday, Aug. 9 at 12 noon, at which time several of Watts’ history makers will be recognized as well as the annual memorial to the 34 people who lost their lives during the 1965 Watts revolt.