Black History Month is in its final days, but there are still plenty of opportunities to celebrate African-American history.
While recognizing African-American accomplishments certainly should not be confined to February, the month specifically designated to honor those achievements provides opportunities to educate yourself about the roles African-Americans have played in national and local history and to show appreciation.
Black History Heritage Ball
When: 5-8 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 25.
Where: Greenview Park, 6700 David St.
Tickets: $10 (including dinner) at the Columbia Parks & Recreation Administrative Office, 1111 Parkside Drive, or any recreation center.
Celebrate Black History Month and African-American heritage at a ball sponsored by the City of Columbia’s Park & Recreation Department.
The evening features dinner (included with tickets) and live entertainment. Attendees are encouraged to wear African-print dresses, shirts or pants, or semi-formal attire.
The event is open to all adults ages 18 and older.
Gospel Fest and Heritage Tea
When: Gospel Fest, 6 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 24; Heritage Tea, 3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 25.
Where: Wood Auditorium, 810 Lyttleton St., Camden.
The Gospel Fest is an annual event designed to celebrate community unity with several local gospel choirs.
This year’s lineup includes The Valentinos, Unity UMC Men’s Choir, Lyttleton Street UMC Choir, Catoe’s Chapel, Camden First UMC Choir, Sanders Creek Male Chorus, Christian Musicians’ Guild, and Bethlehem Baptist Male Choir. At the end of the evening, the audience will be invited to take part in a group song.
In conjunction with Gospel Fest, the Multicultural Committee of the Fine Arts Center of Kershaw County will host the annual Heritage Tea to announce the winners of the Black History Month project for Kershaw County students in grades 3-8.
Artwork by students will be displayed at the Douglas-Reed House until Sunday, Feb. 25.
The Baron Dekalb Singers, dancer Iria Johnson and students will provide entertainment. This year, the Heritage Tea will be dedicated to Bert Karesh, a longtime Fine Arts Center supporter and school arts coordinator.
The Heritage Tea has been hosted by the Fine Arts Center’s Multicultural Committee for more than 20 years. For the past month, Kershaw County students have worked on projects that focus on Africans or African-Americans who have made an impact on history. A reception catered by Hall’s Catering will follow the program.
‘Giving Back: The Soul of Philanthropy Reframed and Exhibited’
When: During library hours through Sunday, May 6.
Where: Richland Library Main, 1431 Assembly St.
Richland Library Main has a multimedia exhibit focusing on African-American philanthropists, from wealthy donors to everyday caregivers.
The exhibition illustrates black philanthropy through highly innovative presentations, including luminous photographic prints on metal, iPad kiosks, video and interactive digital apps featuring music, poetry, photography, narratives and more. It comprises over a dozen vignette stories and more than 50 black-and-white images that depict facets of giving across generations.
The inspiration for this exhibit comes from the award-winning book “Giving Back: A Tribute to Generations of African-American Philanthropists,” written by Charlotte, North Carolina, author Valaida Fullwood with photographer Charles Thomas. The 400-page book celebrates the giving spirit through photography and stories that honor a centuries-old cultural custom. Fullwood says the book is made up of “stories, so soulful and true, they resonate broadly and tap deeply at the core of people any and everywhere.”
The goal of the exhibit is to showcase the rich heritage of black giving on all levels, raise awareness of philanthropy in all communities and inspire others to join the conversation about philanthropy and celebrate stories of local South Carolina philanthropists.
Black History Month Documentary: ‘Homegoings’
When: 3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 25.
Where: Richland Library Main (in the auditorium), 1431 Assembly St.
Funeral director Isaiah Owens talks about the “beauty and grace” of African-American funerals in this documentary film.
Filmed at the Owens Funeral Home in Harlem and in the rural South, “Homegoings” takes an up-close look at the rarely seen world of undertaking in the black community, where funeral rites draw on a rich palette of tradition, history and celebration.
The documentary reveals the special status of undertakers in the community, borne out of their permanence, their economic stability, and the necessities of the segregation period.
Combining cinéma vérité with intimate interviews, archival photographs and an evocative score by Daniel Roumain, the film paints a portrait of the dearly departed, their grieving families and a man who sends loved ones “home.”