Nationwide — Bob Marley wrote and sung a song, “Get up, Stand Up” which encouraged people to be active in the pursuit of peace and justice. Fannie Lou Hammer also urged people to become active in the pursuit of justice by saying, “All my life I’ve been sick and tired. Now I’m sick and tired of being sick and tired” and “Nobody’s free until everybody’s free.”
At the upcoming 20th Annual International Locks Conference: Natural Hair, Wholistic Health and Beauty Expo, attendees will have the opportunity to see and participate in a living example of self-determination, of the power of unity, networking, and buying black. The conference will be held on Saturday and Sunday, October 4 and 5, 2014, each day from 11:00 AM to 9:30 PM, at the Universal Audenried Charter High School, 3301 Tasker Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19145.
Just imagine 20 years of serving the community; 20 years of exchanging great information; 20 years offering good and healthy food; 20 years of cultural fashions; 20 years of honoring our ancestors; 20 years of soulful drumming and thought-provoking spoken word; 20 years of greeting and meeting new and old friends; 20 years of building, supporting, and helping to start new black businesses; 20 years of celebrating natural hair, our heritage, and our beautiful loving black families; 20 years of jaw-dropping natural hairstyling; 20 years of learning wholistic approaches to wellness; 20 years of serving as a model of self-determination and promoting our cultural expression and connections; 20 years of raising consciousness; 20 years of presenting scholars; and 20 years of a spiritual high. In a time when the streets and news headlines are full of murder, grief, injustice, and police brutality, the 20th Annual International Locks Conference: Natural Hair, Wholistic Health and Beauty Expo offers a necessary and momentary break to allow folks in neighborhoods to breathe in the healing energy of love, unity, knowledge of self, and to regain strength and courage to keep fighting for justice and to be introduced to strategies and solutions to the ills that our communities nationwide are facing.
The Kuumba Family Organizing Committee chose “Long Road to Consciousness” for the theme of its Annual International Lock Conference: Natural Hair, Wholistic Health and Beauty Expo to celebrate the 20th year of producing a two-day event that is bigger than an Afro, much more than a fashion show and unique natural hairstyles, more than the selling of crafts and quality goods, more than the sharing of wholistic health services and eating good foods. The authentic and original Locks Conference has served as an example of what self-determination (doing for self) truly means, an awakening to new thought and actions. Doing self is a communal concept and has grown into multiple natural hair shows around the country, more and more black people starting businesses, more folks examining their history, refining their sense of self, connecting to Aboriginal Indigenous and African culture, and returning to their natural selves. “Consciousness” is defined as an internal knowledge, an awareness of one’s own existence, sensations, thoughts, and surroundings, and the state of being awake intellectually. The 20th Annual International Lock Conference: Natural Hair, Wholistic Health and Beauty Expo is continuing the tradition of promoting the idea of building and supporting black businesses, honoring ancestors, and learning more about and unapologetically celebrating natural hair, cultural expressions, the strength of family, and good health. This much-anticipated national autumn opportunity for family gathering, spiritual renewal, and networking has always been held the first weekend in October.
The Locks Conference features two full days of informative workshops, panel discussions, leading experts from the natural hair care field, world-renowned scholars, authors, activists, and artists from a myriad of professions, live musical performances, martial arts demonstrations, soul line dancing, self-defense for women, live food demonstrations, children’s workshops, a Kuumba marketplace full of gifted craftspeople, talented vendors, service providers from around the country, a cultural fashion show, and a stunning natural hair show and competition. As special additions, the conference will also offer the opportunity to view the explosive film Urban Kryptonite and to give tribute to the UNIA centennial year and Black August.
By popular demand, the conference will again include a wholistic health, healing, and wellness pavilion offering a wide variety of demonstrations and services such as massage; reflexology; muscle testing; Reiki; sound, breath, and crystal healing; herbal remedies, and soul sweat /aquatic therapy. Furthermore, in keeping with the request for elevating consciousness, the Kuumba Family Organizing Committee is proud to announce the expansion of our popular Ida B. Wells authors’ corner at the Conference dedicated to literacy and domestic harmony. In addition to being available for inspiring discussions and book signings, many talented authors from across the country such as Dr. Marimba Ani, noted historian Runoko Rashidi, Kevin A. Muhammad, Wallace Durham, and Dr. Akosua Ali-Sabree; Dr. Ali Muhammad, Professor Griff, Professor Salim Haji Amir Ali, D’Jehuty Maat-Ra, Cochise Tarak Saa, Ras Ben, Nekhena Evans, Minister Enqi Sangreal, Minister Alif Allah, Dalani Aamon, and Norm Bond will also be presenting informative workshops during the conference.
The complete list of presenters and artists is impressive and longer than this space allows. The organizers acknowledge that although the conference is 20 years young, and it is still full of excitement, opportunities for growth, lots of shopping, and good food, all the ills in the world will not be solved at the event. However, the loving feeling, sense of unity, sharing and exchange of life affirming information will certainly add to attendees having a positive experience. The conference organizers are putting out two special calls. One call is for drummers of the African Diaspora far and near to come and participate in a drumming tribute for our fallen youth, a tribute to the ancestors and prayers for our warriors’ safety. We need to acknowledge that we are the people and answers we have been waiting for and rise up the drum vibration that sends messages and speaks unapologetically to our spirits. The second call is for all those people who have been supporting the original Locks Conference from the very beginning in 1994 and beyond to bring either an early Annual International Locks Conference flyer from the first ten years or a program booklet from the years of 1995 to 2004 for which they will receive a unique gift. Remember that the 20th Annual International Locks Conference: Natural Hair, Wholistic Health and Beauty Expo is for the uplifting of our lives.
The Annual International Locks Conference, a private, not-for-profit community educational and cultural event organized by the Kuumba Family Organizing Committee and the Hair-ITAGE Society, is also sponsored by Zuresh Natural products; Unitees, Inc.; Chic Afrique; Amadi Wellness Connection; the Money School; Ujima Press RC; Sweet Spot Desserts; Locs Socks; Nubian Essence; I Munch Cafe; Akoma Ntosoa: United Hearts Cultural Academy; GMI Contractors; and Zaki Associates. A small donation is requested. Mark your calendar and make a plan to attend the conference which will be held on Saturday and Sunday, October 4 and 5, 2014, each day from 11:00 AM to 9:30 PM, at the Universal Audenried Charter High School, 3301 Tasker Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19145.
For more information, to volunteer, or to register for our annual hair show and competition, and/or to see a detailed schedule of the speakers and activities being offered at the 20th Annual International Locks Conference log onto the web site: www.Locksconference.com or email: info@LocksConference.com or contact the a contact the Kuumba Family Organizing Committee at (888) 305-3186.
Advance tickets can be purchased at www.eventbrite.com/e/20th-annual-international-locks-conference-natural-hair-wholistic-health-and-beauty-expo-tickets-11255799399
MaMa Akosua Ali.Sabree, 215-438-8189
Sakinah Ali.Sabree, 267-259-8400