Westchester has a deep cultural history for African Americans, from still-standing former slave quarters, through abolitionist railroad stops, to the honored veterans interred at the Rye African-American Cemetery.
Whether it’s making your own custom print or watching the history-making Black Panther, here’s a short guide on where you can celebrate Black History Month in the county.
First up is a Spoken Word Workshop at the Hudson River Museum, led by Yonkers-based poet Marcus John. John will perform with instrumentation and inviting the audience to give it a try. These spoken masterpieces will be honoring prominent African Americans in U.S. history, followed by a signing of John’s book.
Free with museum admission.
Music at Asbury is celebrating Black history month through song! Singer and actress Julia Breanetta Simpson will perform “Harlem on My Mind,” a one-woman show featuring the theatrical stylings of the Harlem Renaissance, the poetry of Langston Hughes, and the music of Duke Ellington. All ages are welcome.
Tickets are free.
Hudson River Museum is back at it with printmaking. Artist Kay Douglass is not only an artist but also an educator. She uses historical narratives to break into conversations about race and history and how they intersect. In her workshop participants will create portraits of black leaders through printmaking. You will carve your image of choice into a Styrofoam block and make your background. Then you ink your block and stamp it, completing your work of art. Free with admission.
This one is for the kids: Why not celebrate Black History Month with your doll? Addy Walker, one of the original American Girl dolls, made a quilt for her parents to celebrate their wedding after being freed from slavery. At this event, kids can make a no-sew patchwork quilt for their own American Girl Doll.
Tickets are $15; all supplies included.
Come be immersed in song as ‘Lift Every Voice’ has its 12th annual concert in celebration of Black History Month. Led by Pete Malinverni, the Soul Voices choir at Purchase College will perform spirituals and highlight black artists. The BFA Junior Acting Company will also share spoken word pieces championing black stories of victory and success.
Celebrate Black History Month through film and literature at the White Plains Public Library. The roster is packed with classics like The Wiz, as well as new favorites like Black Panther and The Hate U Give and a variety of Black History Month themed family story times.
Events are free.