Celebrate Black History Month

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By Jessica Garret Modkins

Celebrating Black History Month in Miami has opportunities for everyone.

February celebrates Black History month. For decades this month has been set apart to acknowledge the innovations, merits, and victories that African-Americans have vested into our society. You can join the month-long celebration across Miami with events ranging from an exhibition challenging the narrative of African-Americans in animation to a frank discussion on the importance of Black Owned media outlets.

Below you will find a few highlighted events. You can also view our calendar of events happening during Black History Month.

On the first day of February, The Black Archives History and Research Foundation of South Florida kicks off Black History month with Sights & Sounds of Our Heritage presented by Miami-Dade County Commission Vice Chairwoman Audrey M. Edmonson at the Black Archives. Guests are asked to wear African attire and to arrive at 6 pm. Refreshments will be served.

The Funky Turns 40: Black Character Revolution exhibition challenges the stereotypes of Blacks. It showcases more than 300 pieces of Black animation art from the 1960s and 70s as well as original animations, posters, and storyboards celebrating black culture of the 70s. The exhibit runs through February 28th. Tickets are available on site – kids 12 and under are free and adult tickets are $8. The Black Archives Historic Lyric Theater Cultural Arts Complex is located at 819 NW 2nd Avenue in Miami.

Get set for Lyric Live All-Stars 4th Season talent contest. This culminating evening of Lyric Live will feature the winning contestants from the 4th Season of Lyric Live, vying for the grand prize and "All Star" title on February 2nd. Hosted by comedian Chello, the show will feature live music from Jody Hill & Deep Fried Funk Band, DJ H2, DJ Ed the World Famous, and the Showtyme Junkanoo.

Join the Blaxploitation Film Marathon on February 3rd starting at 10 am. Witness back-to-back blaxploitation films, highlighting how African Americans have used art and comedy to mock negative stereotypes and create new messaging.

February 6th through February 10th is the national conference, Black Tech Week. Now in its fourth year, Black Tech Week has evolved into 3 conferences to choose from: #GovEduCon, #HustleReunion, and #MaskoffLab — find the ones that are right for you.

There is also an opportunity to experience the African culture first hand at the 1st Annual Egbe Orisa Traditional Arts n' Cultural Festival at Historic Virginia Key Beach Park on February 10th, from noon to 10 p.m. Guests will have an opportunity to eat authentic African cuisine as well as shop, peruse authentic African art, and enjoy the performances of live dancers, drummers, and DJ's in a village-like setting.

The 21st Annual Melton Mustafa Jazz Festival is February 22nd through February 25th. Join the celebration of jazz through art, music and film happening daily. It culminates with a jazz concert at the Black Archives Lyric Theater.

The Black Owned Media Alliance presents the 3rd Annual Get to Know Black Media: A Symposium on February 6th. This year’s symposium will be held at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts located at 1300 Biscayne Boulevard in Miami. The symposium is a free event but requires registration.

Deering Estate Alumna Artist-in-Residence Michelle Grant-Murray will host the ‘The Black Artist Talk’, a forum bringing black arts and culture to the forefront in our community. The event takes place on February 24th from 1 pm to 4 pm at Deering Estate Visitor Center Theatre. You can also see the film documentary “The Richmond Heights 49ers” — the history of a community developed for Black World War II veterans in 1949. Admission is free. RSVP to stryky@miamidade.gov or by calling 305.235.1668 ext. 238.

Dedications Dance Academy presents Expressions of Rhythm honoring legends of dance on February 23rd through February 25th. Shows are nightly at the Bethel Church, 14440 Lincoln Boulevard. For more information and group rates please call 786.587.2389.

The Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts welcomes seven-time Grammy award winner Gladys Knight for a night of hits on February 10th at 8 pm. Ten-time Grammy award winner and Jazz legend George Benson takes the stage on February 16th at 8 pm. The Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater performs February 22nd through the 25th. Black History month at the Arsht Center culminates with The Color Purple from February 27th through March 4th.

The Haitian Heritage Museum presents Arts Innovation Talk on February 22nd from 6 pm to 9 pm. Join local Urban Contemporary Artists Kandy Lopez, Troy Simmons, and Tracy Guiteau for a discussion on their unique artistic forms of expression and the role that the Arts plays in community building through the lens of Urban Black Contemporary Artists. For tickets, call 305.371.5988.

Ankara Miami 2018, Florida's Premier African Fashion Week is Florida’s largest runway show committed to featuring emerging and established designers from the African Diaspora. Join Ankara Miami starting February 22nd through February 25th for red carpet shows throughout Miami.

The 2nd Annual Black History Showcase, Rise Up is on February 13th, presented by District 1 School Board Member, Dr. Steve Gallon III of Miami Dace County Public Schools. This year’s theme is “We Rise by Lifting Others.” Admission is free and the celebration will be held at Miami Carol City Senior High School Auditorium, 3301 Miami Gardens Drive in Miami Gardens. For more information please call 305.995.1340.

Gamma Zeta Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Incorporated presents Pink Goes Red. A Wine, Cheese, and Salsa affair benefitting the American Heart Association. Join the AKA’s on February 2nd at 7 pm. The event will take place at 17671 NW 78th Avenue in Miami and donations are $22. Purchase tickets.

Join South Florida People of Color at the Brockway Memorial Library in Miami Shores on February 8th from 6 pm to 7:30 pm for an annual celebration. Discovery, Camaraderie, Jazz and Poetry. Witness live jazz with sax player Cory Jones, spoken word with poet Butterfly, and a unique exhibit of unsung people of color who have contributed to American culture and society. Admission is free.

Explore Miami's History and Heritage

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