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Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Black History Now: A Series of Saturday Celebrations of Today’s Changemakers at the Portsmouth Museums and Portsmouth Public Library

Black History Now in Portsmouth, Virginia

Portsmouth, VA — The Portsmouth Museums and Portsmouth Public Library are proud to host the Black History Now – Celebrating Today’s Changemakers. The museums and library branches will host events and activities “Celebrating Black People Creating And Promoting Change In Our Community” Saturday, January 16th through February 27th.

Highlights include performances from master storytellers Orisirisi African Folklore, presentations and performances by Atumpan Edutainment, The Hurrah Players, and Young Audiences of Virginia, engaging workshops, local authors Ronnie Nelson Sydney and Dr. Laurie Cannady, as well as a tribute to Coach Joe Langston. A complete schedule of events and activities is included below:

SATURDAY, JANUARY 16

What: Linwood Pettaway: Community Hero Portrait Drawing Workshop
Where: Children’s Museum of Virginia
When: 10 am
A guided drawing workshop taught by local artist Linwood Pettaway. Students will sketch a portrait of an African American hero. Art supplies will be provided.
Workshop Fee: $7 Museum members $8 non-members (Fee includes museum admission)
Registration deadline: January 13th – Pre-registration required
Call 757-393-5258, ext. 44

What: Orisirisi African Folklore
Where: Children’s Museum of Virginia
When: 11:30 am, 12:30 & 1:30 pm
Performances by Internationally acclaimed, master storytellers.
Included with Museum admission.

What: Ekphrasis Workshop & Brighton Elementary School Choir
Where: Portsmouth Community Colored Library Museum
When: 2:30 pm
Featuring poetry reading inspired by the artwork of Linwood Pittway. Mr. Pettaway’s art will also be on display at the museum. A performance by the Brighton Elementary School Choir will begin the program that aims to inspire local poets to make history through their writings. FREE and open to the public.

What: Orisirisi African Folklore
Where: Portsmouth Main Library
When: 3 pm
Performances by Internationally acclaimed, master storytellers.
FREE and open to the public.

SATURDAY, JANUARY 23

What: Sheila Arnold and Sarah Brady, A Performance of Civil Rights Voices
Where: Portsmouth Community Colored Library Museum
When: 2 pm
Sheila Arnold and Sarah Brady, performing artists with Young Audiences, introduce the voices of civil rights activists as a way to challenge and inspire a younger generation to explore the topic of civil rights and become today’s history makers.

SATURDAY , JANUARY 30

What: Chadra Pittman-Walke, Giving Voice to African-American Artifacts
Where: Portsmouth Community Colored Library Museum
When: 2 pm
A performance by Chadra Pittman-Walke, executive director of The Sankofa Projects, will include an interactive walk through the museum using poetry, creative movement, and prose from African American scholars and writers. The program will bring to life Portsmouth history and celebrate local black heroes featured in the museum’s exhibits.
FREE and open to the public.

SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 6

What: The Hurrah Players Family Theater: “Once On This Island”
Where: Children’s Museum of Virginia
When: 11 am & 1 pm
Segment performances of Once on This Island, a classic play in African American theater.
Included with museum admission.

What: Local Author Discussion: Ronnie Nelson Sydney “Nelson Beats the Odds”
Where: Portsmouth Main Library
When: 1 pm
Patrons will be inspired by Ronnie Nelson Sydney as he discusses his rise from being a special education student to obtaining his Master’s degree during a reading of his new book Nelson Beats the Odds. FREE and open to the public.

FEBRUARY 12-13

What: Thurbia U. Parker, Sr., Visualizing Jim Crow: A Journey from the slave ship to the Civil Rights Movement
Where: Portsmouth Community Colored Library Museum
When: 10 am & 1 pm
Thurbia U. Parker, Sr., will guest curate this traveling exhibition that includes memorabilia, images, and other artifacts that show how corporate America fueled racism through stereotypic depiction of blacks. Parker will be on location throughout the two-day exhibition to discuss his collection. FREE and open to the public.

SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 13

What: Atumpan Edutainment
Where: Children’s Museum of Virginia
When: 11:30 am & 1 pm
Atumpan Edutainment will lend their talents by performing African drumming, dance, and folklore. Included with museum admission.

What: Nathan Richardson presents Frederick Douglass
Where/When: Portsmouth Craddock Branch Library | Noon
Where/When: Portsmouth Churchland Branch Library | 2 pm
Nathan Richardson, accomplished performance poet and published author, will depict the life of the well-known writer, orator and abolitionist.

What: Tyrone Travis, Ventriloquist
Where: Portsmouth Main Library
When: 2 pm FREE and open to the public.

SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 20

What: Omega Psi Phi Fraternity | Local Portsmouth Chapter
Where: Children’s Museum of Virginia
When: 1 pm
The local Portsmouth Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity will share the importance of taking care of our community with energetic step routines. Included with museum admission.

What: Local Author Discussion Dr. Laurie Cannady “Crave: Sojourn of a Hungry Soul”
Where: Portsmouth Main Library
When: 1 pm
Dr. Laurie Cannady will share her coming of age memoir that chronicles a young girl’s journey through abuse and impoverishment. FREE and open to the public.

SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 27

What: Nathan Richardson presents Frederick Douglass
Where: Portsmouth Manor Branch Library
When: Noon
Nathan Richardson, accomplished performance poet and published author, will depict the life of the well-known writer, orator and abolitionist.

What: Coach Joe Langston: A Mountain of a Man with a Lion’s Heart
Where: Portsmouth Community Colored Library Museum
When: 10 am – 4 pm
This exhibit will feature memorabilia celebrating Coach Langston’s winning spirit both on and off the field as an I.C. Norcom student athlete and as a legendary coach. Visitors who come to honor Coach Langston’s legacy will have opportunities to share their thoughts as part of a video documentary.

EVERY SATURDAY

What: Make-N-Take Activities
Where: Children’s Museum of Virginia
When: Times vary
Themed crafts and S.T.E.M. activities highlighting African American scientists and their contributions.

 

About Portsmouth Museums
The City of Portsmouth maintains five museums which provide the citizens of Portsmouth, Hampton Roads, the Commonwealth of Virginia and beyond with high quality educational and cultural experiences in the arts, humanities and the sciences through the use of exhibitions, programs and collections. Two museums will host many of the Black History Now events: the Children’s Museum of Virginia | 757-393-5258 | www.childrensmuseumvirginia.com and the Portsmouth Colored Community Library Museum | 757-393-8983, ext. 20 | www.portsvaafricanamericanheritage.com

 

About the Portsmouth Public Library
The Portsmouth Public Library has been a cornerstone of the Portsmouth community for over 90 years providing free access to information and resources. Portsmouth Public Library serves the community through 4 locations; Main, Cradock, Churchland, and Manor. For more information call 757-393-8501 or visit www.portsmouth-va-public-library.com

 

About the City of Portsmouth, Virginia
The City of Portsmouth, Virginia is the geographical center of Hampton Roads located in the southeastern corner of Virginia. Over 250 years old, the city is a true historical gem with stories and architecture dating back to the American Revolution and earlier. For more information call 757-393-8000 or visit www.PortsmouthVa.gov

 

PRESS CONTACT:
Lynette James, City of Portsmouth
jamesl@portsmouthva.gov
(757) 393-8983

 

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