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Councilman John Akouri, former Washington, DC Press Secretary & Capitol Hill Advisor, is President & CEO of the Lebanese American Chamber of Commerce.

Thursday, August 20, 2009


The Third Annual Lebanese Festival
A Vibrant World Class Celebration of Heritage, Culture & Art
August 28-29 at Town Square in Downtown Northville
(NORTHVILLE, MI/USA)...The Lebanese American Chamber of Commerce is pleased to announce LEBFEST! The 2009 Lebanese Festival – A Vibrant World-class Celebration of Heritage, Culture & Art at Town Square in Downtown Northville.
The third annual two-day event – also known as a ‘Mahrajan’ – will take place on Friday, August 28, from 5:00 PM – 11:00 PM & Saturday, August 29, 2009 from 11:00 AM – 11:00 PM. Everyone is welcome to attend and encouraged to bring family & friends to savor the sights, sounds and tastes of EVERYTHING LEBANESE! The weekend event will feature: specialty food booths offering tasty authentic Lebanese cuisine & American fare; International Artisans, Crafters and Lebanese merchandise tents; a Children’s Fun & Play area; Live Entertainment with Music, Folkdance Troupes & Bellydancers; Cultural Displays, Mouth-watering Pastries & Homemade Ice Cream, a traditional Ethnic Bazaar & Market, and more!
Honorary Chairperson of the 2009 Festival Host Committee is Pamela Faris, wife of Lt. Governor John D. Cherry. The 2009 LEBFEST Grand Marshall is HBO Sports Commentator & Kronk Gym Legend Emmanuel Steward, who will officially cut the ribbon to open the concert. Steward, the former boxing coach for Tommy Hearns, has trained many young, up-and-coming Lebanese American boxers and will be joined on the MainStage by acting Lebanese Consul General Ara Khatchadourian, Award-winning Lebanese American author Raff Ellis, Miss Lebanon USA, His Grace, Capt. Rev. Father Elie Zouein, P.P., Our Lady of Lebanon Pastor Very Rev. Fr. Hanna Tayar, O.M.M., Northville Mayor Christopher J. Johnson, Northville Township Trustees Abe Munfakh & Christopher Roosen, Honorary Consul of Grenada Rob David, and The Official Red Robin Mascot.
The Baalbeck-style live concert on the Paramount Bank Stage will present ‘An Evening of Lebanese Stars’ under the Northville skies, with a special appearance by the ‘Voice’ of the Detroit Red Wings Karen Newman singing the US & Canadian National Anthems, Lebanese Diva Amalia Kaddo, International Superstar Usama Baalbaki, the Jazz Stylings of Eric Watson, Hollywood Actor Alex Safi, Comedians from the Arab American Comedy Show, Oud Virtuoso Laith Alattar & Al-Flamenco, The Abud Brothers Jazz Quartet, Composer & Vocalist Tara Khnanisho, Highly-acclaimed Opera Performer Lara Alamie, The Fabulous Nicholas Brothers with Percussionist Extraordinaire Tony ‘The Tiger’ Tannous among others.
Some highlights for this year include new features at LEBFEST! with the First Annual Bachelor Auction benefiting the Lebanese Chamber, a Fashion Show by Lebanese designer Deanna Ansara, an Open Casting Call coupled with a Special Movie Premiere of the Film Short: Detroit Unleaded, a special appearance by Arabian Villagers from the Michigan Renaissance Festival, photo opportunities with Miss LEBFEST! ‘08 Nancy Daoud & Miss LEBFEST! ’09 Nicole Frangie, and two great bands will perform: America's favorite Rock'n'Roll Band Steve King & the Dittilies and Al Sutterfield & The Complete Abandon Band.
Festival Eve will bring an exclusive red-carpet Celebrity Preview Party to the Tom James Gallery of Fine Art in Northville. This star-studded event and champagne reception will include an exhibit of great new works by renown Lebanese American Artist Stephen Deeb and a book-signing by best-selling Lebanese American author from Florida, Raff Ellis. Patrons can expect celebrity sightings with the presence of several Detroit sports figures; dine on delicious Lebanese culinary hors d'oeuvres, courtesy of Beirut Bakery and tantalizing desserts thanks to the all new Sweet 220 - all while listening to the soothing sounds of the internationally acclaimed Abud Brothers Jazz Quartet. Much more awaits guests as they arrive along the limousine-lined curb to be formally greeted by models from Deanna’s Fashions, with guided tours of one of Michigan’s most awe-inspiring galleries at this invitation-only spectacular event.
As part of the official closing ceremonies of this year's LEBFEST!, the Lebanese American Chamber of Commerce in association with Madonna University Department of Broadcast & Cinema Arts, is hosting an Advance Screening of a short film shot entirely on location in Detroit, on Sunday, August 30, at 2:00pm. Film executives will be introduced by Hollywood Actor Alex Safi and be in attendance at the feature premiere to offer brief remarks prior to the start of the film. Immediately following the showing, there will be a question and answer session from the audience and an opportunity for photos and autographs. Also, in special arrangement with the Chamber, DVD copies of the film will be available for purchase before and after the screening. Seating is limited to the first 300 guests, and a release date for the full length feature will be announced.
LEBFEST! is a project of the Lebanese American Chamber of Commerce. Admission is free. Town Square is located in beautiful downtown Northville and is situated off of Main Street between Center & Hutton Streets. Guests are encouraged to bring a lawn chair to sit on to enjoy the concert. Opening Ceremonies take place on Friday at 6:30 PM. An official AfterParty takes place on Saturday night at Bak Bar following the concert.
For more information please visit
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