Photo: Johnny Nunez / Contributor via Getty Images
  /  08.11.2023

Co-presenter and sponsor Walmart celebrated the limitless potential of Black creatives and entrepreneurs with Walmart Makers Studio, a unique pop-up experience where attendees had the chance to be inspired by emerging Black makers, collaborators and influencers who are shaping hip hop culture.

On Saturday, Aug. 5, 13,000 people packed the Forest Hills Stadium in Queens, New York in honor of hip hop’s 50th anniversary during the Rock The Bells Festival. From the OGs who pioneered the movement in the ‘70s to the next-up who are creating the cultures of tomorrow, generations came together to celebrate the Black makers and fans who led hip hop to where it is today. Slick Rick, RUN-DMC, Queen Latifah, Method Man and Redman were amongst the star-studded lineup that took the sold-out crowd on a trip across the ages.

Through five curated modules, Walmart offered attendees inspiration by way of emerging Black creators who are leaving their mark on hip hop culture. “Walmart doing some incredible stuff on what being Black & Unlimited means,” Kazeem Famuyide, one of the company’s Black influencers, shared.

Attendees experienced the backdrop of hip hop’s birthplace in the Bronx at The Stoop, where they kicked back and enjoyed the vibes much like the OGs did back in the day. Inside, Walmart created a sneaker cleaning station in partnership with The Soap Box, co-founded by CEO Waleed Cope, which informed guests on sneaker upkeep while showcasing personalized products for attendees’ shoe collections. The Tagging Table live-tagged merchandise with hip hop’s iconic bubble lettering.

“It’s tons of fun. We’ve got the graffiti going. We got customization. Shout out to NTWRK. Shout out to The Soap Box. We having fun, taking photos. It’s hot, but it’s cute,” DJ Saige, another Black creative and influencer, said.

Temperatures reached 84°, but as DJ Saige mentioned, attendees kept it cute with Walmart’s suite of Black-owned hair and skincare products at The Refresh station. People stayed fresh and ready to rock as they snapped album cover-worthy photos at The Studio station. There, guests left with their own contact sheet-inspired photo with creative direction by Bronx-born photographer Ravie B.

By the end of the event, attendees were gifted white bags donning the Walmart Makers Studio logo filled to the brim with swag. Walmart truly honored and celebrated the creatives and fans who made the past 50 years of hip hop a hit. “This is amazing. It’s an homage to our culture. It’s an homage to who we are. And it’s respect to all this. I love you, Walmart!” influencer Mitsué exclaimed in an interview.

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