I cannot think of a better gift today, on my birthday, than to not only have celebrated the successful third annual Harlem EatUp! Festival this past weekend, but also to have worked on it as this year’s talent manager with a dynamic and awesome team of people. Congratulations to all and thank you to the sponsors, volunteers, participants and especially all the revelers who ate, drank and stayed merry.

For the first-time, Harlem EatUp! hosted a concert at the Apollo Theater. They paid homage to the great Billie Holiday, featuring the most transformative voices in blues and jazz, backed up by the Afrobeat band Antibalas. Guests, participants and participants were blown away by the evening.

Friday brought the return of the Dine In Harlem series, in which guest chefs collaborate with Harlem chefs and restaurants to create a one-night-only massive dinner party. I jumped between a few for the night but settled at Streetbird with guest chef consortium, Four J Foods.

The week culminated with the Harlem Stroll in Morningside Park. There, guests tasted foods, wines, beers and spirits from more than 40 purveyors in the Ultimate Grand Tasting, while breaking it down to the sounds of the live band and crowd-rocking DJ. The Marketplace of the Harlem Stroll would not be outdone, with awesome Harlem foods and products for sale, plus the EatUp! Main Stage blew their tent out with live culinary demonstrations, performances and a DJ keeping the mood funky.

Enough reading. Take in this micro-percentage of the pictures I took to get the feeling. Harlem EatUp! 2017 was magnetic! I am already pumped for 2018!

Happy eating and thanks for reading!

Kysha Harris is a food writer and editor, culinary producer, consultant and owner of SCHOP!, a personalized food service in NYC for more than 15 years. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram, @SCHOPgirl, on Facebook, /SCHOPnyc, and her blog, www.talkingSCHOP.wordpress.com. Questions? Comments? Requests? Feedback?  Invitations!  Email AmNewsFOOD at AmNewsFOOD@SCHOPnyc.com. Follow us on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook @NYAmNewsFOOD and tag us with #SoAmNewsFOOD

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