Black History Month Events

An exhibit captures lives and events dear to the African-American community in Syracuse

A major new exhibit of Syracuse’s African-American history — illustrated by dozens of vintage photographs, antique documents and transcripts of oral history interviews — is on display at the Onondaga Historical Association. The collection will serve as a preview of a larger display, the Black History Preservation Project, which the association will put online later in the year.

“This collection is first of its kind in Syracuse and just a sample of what we will display when the virtual museum is ready,” said Gregg Tripoli, OHA’s executive director.

Other partners for the project include the Dunbar Center, Syracuse University’s South Side Initiative and the Onondaga County Public Library.

The presentation, which opened Feb. 1, will be on display through March at the OHA Museum. The exhibit is open during regular museum hours, and admission is free.

The exhibit chronicles people, places and events significant to the Syracuse black community.

“Visitors will recognize the places where they grew up, their family members and people they haven’t seen in years,” Tripoli said.

Almost every artifact on display was donated from local collections, Tripoli said.

Project members held digital collection fairs, where community members brought their photographs to be scanned and archived into a digital database.

“We’re trying to preserve this history for future generations,” Tripoli said. “We hope this becomes a wonderful walk down memory lane for our community.”

What: Movies of Color: Black Southern Cinema
When: 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 12
Where: ArtRage Gallery, 505 Hawley Ave. at North Crouse, Syracuse
Cost: $5 suggested donation
More details: This Saturday Screening provides a revealing look at African-American filmmakers in the South before World War III. Shown will be little known pieces of Black history and rare film clips with commentary by historians and film experts. Refreshments and popcorn will be provided, and the screening will be followed by a discussion.
More Info.: Call (315) 218-5711 or visit

What: Black History Month Cabaret Featuring Antoinette Montague
When: 5 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 13
Where: Sheraton Syracuse University Hotel & Conference Center, 801 University Ave., Syracuse
Cost: $25/$20 CNYJAF donors (w/card)/$12 students (w/ID). Affordable food stations and cash bar are available once inside
More details: Bluesy Antoinette Montague returns to present an all-new show sponsored by CNY Jazz Central. Doors open at 4 p.m., music begins at 5 p.m. and Montague’s show begins at 6 p.m.
More Info.: Call (315) 479-JAZZ or visit

What: Sarah Loguen Fraser Day: Passing the Torch
When: Noon Wednesday, Feb. 16
Where: Weiskotten Hall, first floor Alumni Auditorium, 766 Irving Ave.
Cost: Free; light lunch provided
More details: Luvenia Cowart RN, EdD, director, Genesis Health Project Network; professor of practice, College of Human Ecology, Syracuse University to speak and presentation of the scholarship to Dalanda Jalloh MSII
More Info.: Call 464-5234 or 464-5433

What: Be the Match: Marrow Donor Drive
When: 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 16
Where: Weiskotten Hall, ninth floor lobby (near auditorium), 766 Irving Ave.
Cost: Free
More details: Learn how to save a life and join the national marrow donor registry; process takes less than 10 minutes.
More Info.: Call 464-5234 or 464-5433

What: Black History Month Celebration
When: 6 p.m. Monday, Feb. 28
Where: Wilson Park Community Center, 1117 S. McBride St.
Cost: Free
More details: The community is invited to celebrate Black History Month
More Info.: Call Barbara Grimes at (315) 473-6828

Black History Month at Beauchamp Library
All events free and held at the library, located at 2111 S. Salina St.
More Info.: Call (315) 435-3395 or visit

What: Story Times for Kids
When: 1:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 5 and 19
More details: Parents and guardians are encouraged to bring toddlers and preschoolers to enjoy books, songs, dance and fun to celebrate Black History Month; facilitated by Katie Hayduke, Beauchamp Branch Library’s children’s librarian

What: The Reading Room OnDance
When: 3:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 11
More details: Dance stories celebrating Black History Month will be read and shared and basic dance poses will be taught by Cheryl Wilkins Mitchell in the Sankofa Room

What: African American Read-In (for children Pre-K to fourth grade)
When: 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 12
More details: Community members, including Syracuse University’s African Students Union and Literacy Corps. Volunteers, will read aloud books by and about African-Americans and African American history

What: “The Lottery”
When: 2 to 5 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 12
More details: Movie about inequities in education. Post-viewing discussion will be led by Prof. Marcelle Haddix, reading language arts faculty at Syracuse University’s School of Education

What: “One Drop” Poetry/Open Mic
When: 2 p.m. Friday, Feb. 18
More details: An afternoon of poetry and other expressions facilitated by Chene Redwood and Enkeshi Thom

What: “Black Girls Rock!”
When: 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 19
More details: Discussions will focus on self-empowerment, goal setting, image control and the importance of historical knowledge and self-awareness and be facilitated by Ashley Neal and Chy’na Nellon

What: Black History Jeopardy
When: 2 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 22
More details: Attendees will get a chance to sharpen their Black History knowledge in this interactive game led by Enkeshi Thom and Dara Walker; topics will include: history, famous people, places and more, and winners will receive prizes

What: “4 Little Girls” (for sixth through 12th grades)
When: 4 to 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 22
More details: This documentary film is the story of the infamous terrorist bombing of the 16th St. Baptist Church in Birmingham, Ala. On Sept. 15, 1963, which resulted in the death of four African-American girls; the screening will be followed by a post-viewing discussion

What: “Akeelah and the Bee”
When: 2 to 4 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 23
More details: In this movie, watch Akeelah build her confidence and self esteem as she enters a spelling bee competition

What: Precious Cargo: An Artistic Exploration of Black History
When: 2 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 24
More details: Art Brangman will utilize his artwork to provide a historical exploration of African-American heritage, and his works will be on display at the library

What: African Trade Bead Necklace and Bracelet Craft
When: 3:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 24
More details: Create jewelry to celebrate Black History Month; open to children of all ages

What: Support Resources for Black Youth and Families
When: 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 24
More details: Presentation on education, job readiness, goal-setting, peer pressure and youth violence prevention by Kenyatta Pace with Duane Reese and Sean Herring

What: Information and Services for the Blind and Visually Handicapped
When: 5:30 to 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 24
More details: Outreach Specialist Donna Reese for Aurora of Central New York will be available to answer questions

What: Teen Fashion Show/Parade
When: 2 p.m. Friday, Feb. 25
More details: Teens will get a chance to showcase their fashion sense; call to register

What: Let’s Talk About Sex: Developing Healthy Intimate Relationships
When: 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 26
More details: Facilitators Carieta Thomas, Tanara Hayes and Ashley Neal will speak on relationships and promote safe sex

Syracuse University’s Black History Month Events