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Harlem's EatUp Festival Is The True Definition Of Eat, Drink And Be Merry

The second annual food festival brought together restaurants from all over Harlem and throughout New York and of course, foodies.

Whether you were raised in the kitchen, or the take out guy knows your first name. If your pantry consists of only salt and pepper or your DNA is made up of onion and garlic, the second annual Harlem EatUp Festival encapsulates one life's greatest joys: food.

The four day event--co-founded by Marcus Samuelsson and Herb Karlitz--consisted of Dine-Ins at some of Harlem's most prized restaurants including Ginny's Supper Club, Melba's Restaurant and Bluejeen among a few. I attended Chef Joseph "JJ" Johnson's Dine In Minton's, which was was equal parts tasty as it was a turn up! With help from guest chef's Alex Guarnaschelli and Michael Jenkins, attendees enjoyed a five course meal of roasted asparagus, rice porridge in an oxtail broth, seared scallops atop charred broccoli and then the most tender lamb I've ever experienced in my life. It literally melted--almost evaporated--in mouth.

The fun didn't stop there, Saturday (May 21) I and a few hundred other food lovers ventured to the park for the Stroll presented by Citibank. While the weather was cloudy, and there was a bit of a nip in the air, it didn't stop guests from enjoying sample after sample. Ticketed attendees from all over New York taste the savory and succulent dishes from some of today's most innovative chefs.

I had everything from Sisters Cuisine's marsala curried potato and chick pea, to Barawine's hand cut Ahi Tuna with Japanese seaweed, ginger soy and chili sauce on top of crisp cucumber. My sweet tooth got the best of me (as it always does) and I ventured over to Lady Lexis Sweets where I had a bread pudding that may rival your nanas, and rum raisin oatmeal cookies that continued calling my name. (I had three...okay five)

The line for Red Rooster's fried chicken with whiskey glaze and mac and greens was out the door, but still worth the wait, and once I finished inhaling what Chef Samuelson offered guests, I mozied on over to Harlem Shake where the fried chicken sliders with jalapeños literally made forget, even just for a moment, about how large my student loan balance is.

The Harlem EatUp festival brought out everyone, young, old, black, white. New York natives and tourists. The chill environment, coupled with great music made for Harlem's second annual food festival an excellent way to spend a weekend.

Will I be returning next year, you ask?  Is the sky blue?

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Hennessy To Allocate $10 Million To Thurgood Marshall College Fund

Herald as the first “corporate HBCU graduate program,” Hennessy announced its plan to allocate $10 million to the Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF). Over the span of the next 10 years, the donation will benefit graduate students seeking to continue their studies at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) in the “corporate, social and economic systems.”

Giles Woodyer, Hennessy US’ senior vice president, said the goal of the "Hennessy Fellows" initiative aims to establish “a pipeline of highly qualified talent over the next 10 years and help prepare these future leaders for success.” Only 10 students will be selected. Those chosen will be notified in June and be able to put their resources to use in Fall 2019. Per each academic year, grad candidates will receive a $20,000 scholarship, a chance to enter a competition for a $10,000 grant that’ll benefit the community, and access to tools that'll further their career through networking and training outlets.

Dr. Harry L. Williams, president and CEO of TMCF, said this decision is more than a "financial" gift.  "When such a tremendously successful global brand like Hennessy invests in a higher education non-profit like ours, it tells the world that HBCUs and PBIs have value and are worth investing in, and TMCF is the best steward to carry out such a monumental investment," Dr. Williams said. "This is major, and it can't be overlooked as just a financial contribution, it is a real partnership that is a game changer for the students and our community."

A portal for applications is now open here.

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Report: Ariana Grande Got Paid Twice As Much As Beyoncé For Coachella

As fans continue to marvel at Beyonce's historical Coachella performance in the Netflix documentary, Homecoming, a new report about the pay discrepancy amongst the festival's headliners is also grabbing people's attention. According to Variety, Ariana Grande got paid double of what Bey earned for her performance.

Grande reportedly made $8 million from the festival, while Beyoncé only took home an estimated $3 to $4 million.

This certainly seems a little odd to fans due to a handful of reasons. For one, Beyoncé is a much more seasoned artist. Additionally, her headlining show, also known as BeyChella, was a historical moment that drew millions of viewers.

Grande also made history this year as the youngest artist to ever headline the three-day event, but the U.S. pay gap may have more to do with the huge difference between their paychecks. Black women make approximately 65 cents to every dollar earned by their white male counterparts. By contrast, white women earn 83 cents to every dollar earned by white men, according to the Pew Research Center.

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Comedy Series 'Rel' Cancelled After Just One Season

Despite making audiences across the country laugh, FOX's comedy series Rel will not return for a second season.

According to Variety, the Lil Rey Howery-lead show– which also starred Sinbad and Jess Hilarious– continued to plummet in ratings.

"Rel‘s (now series) finale, which aired Jan. 13, delivered 2.8 million viewers and a 1.1 in the demo — the series’ best showing since its premiere — but that largely was attributable to the evening’s lead-in: the hugely watched Eagles/Saints NFC divisional playoff," the report reads.

The series was inspired largely in-part to Howery's real life experiences, who lived by the credo "always believe in yourself and great things will come." Shenanigans throughout the series ensue when he discovers his wife is having an affair with his barber.

"I want to thank all the loyal 2 million plus people that tuned in every week to my show," Howery wrote on Instagram regarding the news of the show's cancellation. "I’m so proud of what we did and it was a dream come true... I got a chance to not only create a show based off my material and some real life events I got to work and create magic with my friends... God is so good and I’m truly blessed."

The series was put in the spotlight when its co-creator and executive producer Kevin Barnett suddenly passed away in January during a trip to Mexico. Barnett's death was caused by pancreatitis complications. He was only 32 years old.


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I want to thank all the loyal 2 million plus people that tuned in every week to my show... I’m so proud of what we did and it was a dream come true... I got a chance to not only create a show based off my material and some real life events I got to work and create magic with my friends... God is so good and I’m truly blessed... Thanks again for the huge opportunity and it’s on to the next one... I learned a lot and it’s still a huge accomplishment for me to pull this off... I wanted to make a dramatic comedy with heart and I did that... I know I made you proud Mom!!!!!! #REL

A post shared by Lil Rel Howery (@comedianlilrel) on Apr 17, 2019 at 8:51pm PDT

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