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When it comes to Oprah Winfrey, there doesn’t seem to be many things she hasn’t done — except attend Essence Festival.

However, this weekend she plans to change that with her first-ever appearance at the annual festival held in New Orleans.

45th NAACP Image Awards - Show

It may be hard to believe that Mother O has never actually graced the Essence Festival with her presence, but then you remember the billion dollar media conglomerate that she has been running for decades and it makes sense that her schedule may have been filled up.

Nevertheless, the 62-year-old media mogul is making her festival debut, and according to Shadow and Act, it is not to be missed:

Organizers of Time Inc.’s ESSENCE Festival announced that, for the first time in the event’s 21-year history, Oprah Winfrey will appear at the 2016 ESSENCE Festival in New Orleans, presented by Coca-Cola, on Saturday, July 2, 2016 at 4pm at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center.

Winfrey joins speakers Bishop T.D. Jakes, Ava DuVernay, Rev. Al Sharpton, Misty Copeland and Tyra Banks, as well as performers Mariah Carey, Kendrick Lamar, Maxwell, Puff Daddy and The Family and many more at the annual event – recognized as the nation’s largest gathering of African-American women.

“Oprah’s message of inspiration is universal and, through her life’s work, she has influenced women and girls across the globe,” said ESSENCE Editor-in-Chief Vanessa De Luca. “We are delighted that Iyanla Vanzant graciously invited Oprah to the ESSENCE Festival as a special gift for the fans, so we are welcoming our passionate community to join us for an absolutely extraordinary experience not to be missed.”


Winfrey’s appearance will also give her ample opportunity to promote the new series Queen Sugar, which makes its debut on OWN in September.

As Lisa Gregorian, President and Chief Marketing Officer, Warner Bros. Television Group, told TheWrap, “Adding a show like Queen Sugar — which is filmed in New Orleans and is executive produced by Ava DuVernay, whose body of work strives to shine a light on stories untold — was, of course, a natural fit for us, and we’re happy to present it at one of the summer’s biggest festivals.”

This is the 22nd year of the Essence Festival and it continues to draw some of the biggest names within the entertainment industry. Even though it might be too late to get tickets for this year, that just means you have more than enough time to save up for next year!

SOURCE: Shadow and Act, TheWrap | PHOTO CREDIT: Getty

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