Dinner “Inspired by Zora” Kicks Off the 27th Annual Zora Neale Hurston Festival™ of the Arts and Humanities

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The twenty seventh annual Zora Neale Hurston Festival ™ of the Arts and Humanities (ZORA! ™ Festival) officially kicks off with Dinner “Inspired by Zora,” a buffet-style feast based on the book Zora Neale Hurston on Florida Food by highly regarded author, food anthropologist and Babson College professor, Fred Opie, Ph.D. The event, which lasts from 6-8 PM on January 23, will also include a talk by Dr. Opie on Florida’s historic foodways as presented in Ms. Hurston’s work.


Author, food anthropologist and Babson College professor, Fred Opie, Ph.D

“The annual Zora Neale Hurston festival is a sensational event that pays homage to an important contributor to the North American literary Canon as well as the study of the US South and the Caribbean,” says Dr. Fred Opie, PH.D.

Dinner “Inspired by Zora” will be catered by “Eatonville’s Own” Lester Cunningham and will feature traditional local and regional dishes, prepared similarly to those covered in the book and presented in the most communal way. Offerings will include the following:

Station #1: Fried catfish, Grilled Tilapia, Hush puppies, String beans, Lemongrass Rice
Station #2: Chicken & Dumplings, Sweet Potato Pone, Mixed Greens
Station #3: Beef Stew (with Onions, Potatoes and Carrots), Sweet Corn Pudding, Black-eyed Peas

Pineapple Upside-Down Cake, Sweet Potato Pie

The event will take place at Holy Trinity Reception & Conference Center in Maitland, Florida. Tickets for this event will cost $75, and in addition to the talk and meal, guests will receive Zora Neale Hurston poster and a copy of Zora Neale Hurston on Florida Food.

Presented by the Association to Preserve the Eatonville community (P.E.C.), ZORA! TM Festival is a multi-day, multi-disciplinary event that commemorates the life of 20th Century Renaissance woman Zora Neale Hurston; her hometown, Eatonville and the cultural contributions people of African ancestry have made to the United States and the world. For additional information on ZORA! TM Festival 2016 events visit http://www.zorafestival.org or call 407-647-3307.

For the full schedule of events, visit: http://zorafestival.org/full-schedule/full-schedule-3/

About Fred Opie, Ph.D.
Dr. Frederick Douglas Opie is Professor of History and Foodways at Babson College in Massachusetts and is one of the nation’s foremost authorities on Food Traditions; Food Systems; Elections; Movements; and Migrations. In addition to Zora Neale Hurston on Florida Food, Dr. Opie also authored Hog and Hominy, Upsetting the Apple Cart and Black Labor Migration in Caribbean Guatemala 1882-1923.

About the Association to Preservation the Eatonville Community, (P.EC.)
The Association to Preservation the Eatonville Community, is the nonprofit historic preservation group that organizes ZORA! Festival and whose mission is to enhance the resources of Eatonville, to educate the public about the town’s historic and cultural significance, and to use the community’s heritage and cultural vibrancy for its economic development.

Media Credentials
Approved media will have access to interview areas, and red carpet arrivals, for which press has RSVP’d in advance and received written confirmation from Tina Spencer. This includes media opportunities for the speakers and artist who are in town, as well as other ZORA! TM Festival events. All media must email tinaospencer(at)gmail(dot)com to request access to cover these opportunities. We will do our best to honor all requests. For more information regarding the Zora! Festival visit http://www.zorafestival.org

Terri Vismale-Morris    
Director of Public Relations 27th Annual Zora Neale Hurston™ Festival

Tina O. Spencer
Manager of Public Relations 27th Annual Zora Neale Hurston™ Festival

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Terri Vismale-Morris
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