NYC & COMPANY HIGHLIGHTS FEBRUARY EVENTS IN HONOR OF BLACK HISTORY MONTH
New York City (February 1, 2017) — NYC & Company, New York City’s official destination marketing organization, encourages visitors and locals to honor African-American history in New York City as part of February’s Black History Month. Commemorating key moments, movements and figures in time, organizations across the five boroughs will host events, including discussions, museum and cultural tours, live entertainment and interactive kid-friendly activities, and more for all to partake in.
"African-American history has shaped New York City’s history. This is where the Harlem Renaissance challenged cultural norms, hip-hop music was born and Jackie Robinson broke down baseball’s color barrier,” said Fred Dixon, president and CEO of NYC & Company. “We invite New Yorkers and visitors to honor this history by engaging in informative events across the five boroughs."
Highlights of Black History Month events taking place across the five boroughs are as follows:
Hush Tours’ Birthplace of Hip Hop Tour: Hush Tours leads a four-hour journey through the “Boogie Down” Bronx (and Harlem), areas instrumental to the development of hip-hop and its rich culture. The tour, which begins in Midtown Manhattan, makes stops at famous landmarks including Yankee Stadium, Harlem World, the Graffiti Wall of Fame and the Apollo Theater. (hushtours.com).
Morton Broffman at the Bronx Museum of the Arts: In honor of Black History Month, and as part of an on-going series, the Bronx Museum is featuring four works by the Bronx-born photographer Morton Broffman.
In the spring of 1965, Broffman was among the scores of print journalists, television reporters, and photographers from around the country who traveled to Alabama in 1965 to participate in and record the Selma to Montgomery voting rights march. (bronxmuseum.org).
The Emancipation Proclamation at the Brooklyn Historical Society
Now through Winter 2018, view a replica of the Brooklyn Historical Society's rare copy of the Emancipation Proclamation, signed by Abraham Lincoln in 1863, and examine its dramatic and polemic impact on Americans at the height of the Civil War. The exhibit suggests ways that the document's social and political meaning has evolved in the 150 years since it was signed, and invites visitors to reflect on its legacy in the twenty-first century. (brooklynhistory.org).
Additional Black History Events at the Brooklyn Historical Society this month include:
· Brooklyn Abolitionists, In Pursuit of Freedom at the Brooklyn Historical Society: Running through Winter 2018 Brooklyn Abolitionists shines a light on the unsung heroes of Brooklyn’s anti-slavery movement, offering an inside look at how influential residents helped shape Brooklyn and New York City as a whole.
· A Chamber Music Celebration of Black History Month: On February 23, head to Brooklyn Historical Society's grand "living room" to hear works by African American composers and lyricists, including Samuel Coleridge-Taylor and Maya Angelou.
Black in 19th Century Brooklyn Tour at Green-Wood Ceremony
On Saturday February 25, Green-Wood and Weeksville Heritage Center join together to celebrate and recognize African-Americans in Brooklyn who made a mark on the city’s past and future. Aboard Green-Wood’s trolley, the tour begins with a survey of the many prominent Black New Yorkers and abolitionists laid to rest there before heading to Weeksville in Crown Heights, now Brooklyn’s largest African-American cultural institution to see the new permanent exhibition Weeksville, Transforming Community/ In Pursuit of Freedom and the 19th-century Hunterfly Road houses. (green-wood.com).
Apollo Theater: Since its inception, the world famous Apollo Theater has served as a center of innovation and creative stimulus for Harlem and the City of New York. With music at its core, the Apollo’s programming extends to dance, theater, performance art and spoken word initiatives. The Apollo will celebrate Black History Month with a series of artistic and community programs, highlighted by the return of the theater’s signature talent competition, Amateur Night, on February 22. (apollotheater.org).
Art Inspired By...An African Artist at Gertrude Ederle Recreation Center
On February 22, create your own masterpiece inspired by work from famous artists and various art techniques. The “Art Inspired By” series includes an overview of the artist or technique, followed by a hands-on workshop. This workshop will celebrate Black History Month with inspirational art techniques inspired by an African artist. (nycgovparks.org).
Founded in 1893, MAS NYC protects New York’s legacy spaces and fosters complete neighborhoods across the five boroughs. On February 11, a Civil War History Tour will take participants to notable locations from Cooper Union to Union Square that relate to the Civil War. Learn how New York City played a crucial role in winning the war, as shipbuilders, manufacturers, newspapers, and philanthropists supported the Northern cause. (mas.org).
August Wilson’s Jitney at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre
Set in the early 1970s, the play follows a group of men trying to eke out a living by driving unlicensed cabs, or jitneys. When the city threatens to board up the business and the boss’ son returns from prison, tempers flare, potent secrets are revealed and the fragile threads binding these people together may come undone at last. (jitneybroadway.com).
Louis Armstrong House Museum: By the time of his death in 1971, the man known around the world as Satchmo was widely recognized as a founding father of jazz—a uniquely American art form. His influence, as an artist and cultural icon, is universal, unmatched, and very much alive today. Visitors can also take a general tour of the museum, learning about Armstrong’s contributions to music and his role as a civil rights activist. (louisarmstronghouse.org).
George Washington Carver Workshop at Queens Botanical Garden: George Washington Carver was a botanist known for his innovative research in cultivation and alternative uses for crops like sweet potatoes, soybeans and peanuts. The Queens Botanical Garden workshop on February 21 is a kid-friendly activity, where children can learn about Carver’s achievements, paint with plant dyes and plant their own peanut seed. (queensbotanical.org).
Black Literature Read Out Loud at Wagner College: On February 22, enjoy spirituals, gospel, blues, jazz, funk and soul performed by groups from Wagner College, faculty and soloists in this celebration of African-American composers. (wagner.edu).
Sandy Ground Historical Society Library Museum: As the oldest continuously inhabited free black settlement in the United States, Staten Island’s Sandy Ground holds historical significance with respect to the Civil Rights movement. Established in the early 19th century, the community became a safe haven on the Underground Railroad for African-Americans escaping slavery. Today, the Staten Island property is home to 10 families who are descendants of the original Sandy Ground settlers. The museum, which contains photographs and art documenting the history of Sandy Ground and these families, is a great learning experience for people of all ages. (sandygroundmuseum.org).
In addition, New York City offers specialty tours year-round showcasing African-American culture, including:
Harlem Heritage Tours: From music and food to shopping, Harlem Heritage Tours is your guide to all things Harlem culture. Learn about the history of jazz, hip-hop and gospel music, dine on delicious soul food and shop Harlem’s stores. Tours are guided by individuals who were born and raised in the community, providing first-hand insight into the rich legacy and culture that has emerged in this historic Manhattan neighborhood. (harlemheritage.com).
Harlem Spiritual Tours: Known for its gospel, jazz and soul food themed tours, Harlem Spiritual Tours is a can’t-miss experience. Visit historic Harlem musical landmarks like the original Cotton Club and the Apollo, as tour guides showcase all that Harlem has to offer. (harlemspirituals.com).
For additional Black History Month events and more, visit nycgo.com.
About NYC & Company:
NYC & Company is the official destination marketing organization for the City of New York, dedicated to maximizing travel and tourism opportunities throughout the five boroughs, building economic prosperity and spreading the positive image of New York City worldwide. For all there is to do and see in New York City, visit nycgo.com.
Contact: NYC & Company / Chris Heywood 212-484-1270
Kim Klein 212-484-5475