February is Black History Month, which means celebrating and reflecting on a rich history of Black American culture, innovation, and revolution. Black History Month was preceded by a weeklong celebration that started in 1926 in the United States. Historian Carter G. Woodson and The Association for the Study of Negro Life and History chose the second week of February for the observance due to the birth dates of Frederick Douglass (February 14th) and Abraham Lincoln (February 12th). The change to a longer celebration was first proposed by professors at Kent State University in 1969, and eventually recognized by President Gerald Ford in 1776. Now Black History Month is observed by not only the U.S., but by Canada, the United Kingdom, and the Netherlands.

The celebrations kicked off all over the tristate area, offering locals the opportunity to experience art, music, culture, food, history, and more. Here are some of the ways that the Tristate observes Black History Month in 2018.

New York City
With Marvel’s Black Panther reaching theaters on February 16th, The Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) hosted a two week film series dedicated to Black actors who have challenged the status quo in Hollywood and helped to pave the way for others to come. The series included flicks such as Catwoman, Attack the Block, The Harder They Come, and Strange Days.
For more: https://www.bam.org/film/2018/fight-the-power-black-superheroes-on-film

Actor and activist Danny Glover gave a speech entitled “From Abolition to #BLM” On February 6th at Quinnipiac University.
For more: https://www.qu.edu/life/now/actor-danny-glover-reflects-on-writings-of-frederick-douglass.html

New Jersey
In the spirit of this year’s Black History Month theme, “African Americans in Times of War”, Union County College hosted a screen of Men of Bronze, a documentary about the 369th Regiment in World War I.
For more: http://ucnj.org/press-releases/public-info/2018/01/16/men-of-bronze-harlems-rattlers-featured-in-union-county-black-history-month-celebration/

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