Alachua County Library District announces 2020 Black History Month programs

January 23, 2020
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Illustration of a smiling woman with the text "Celebrate Black History Month"

Gainesville, Fla. – The Alachua County Library District will celebrate Black History Month with special programs including a genealogy research workshop, book discussions, and read-ins featuring inspiring African American community leaders. All events are free and open to the public. Explore the full list of programs at www.aclib.us/blackhistory.

African American Genealogy Research
Saturday, February 1, 10:30 a.m., Library Partnership Branch, all ages
Genealogy librarian Caroline Huguet will review how to navigate census, military, birth records, and other records to learn family history. Explore Ancestry’s new Africa Collections, as well as reference materials related to African Americans.

Black History Month Book and Movie – Beloved
Sunday, February 2 and 16, 1:30 p.m., Millhopper Branch, ages 19 and up
Come (re)discover the beauty of Toni Morrison’s writing and storytelling with a discussion of the award-winning novel “Beloved” on Feb. 2. View “Beloved” starring Oprah Winfrey, Danny Glover, and Thandie Newton on Feb. 16.

A Book for Black Girls – An Afternoon with Antoinette Chanel
Sunday, February 2, 2 p.m., Newberry Branch, all ages
Author and podcaster Antoinette Chanel will read from her children’s book, “A Book for Black Girls.” Books will be available for purchase and signing.

Black Hair Matters
Mondays, Feb. 3, 10 and 24, 5:30 p.m. and March 2, 4:30 p.m., Cone Park Branch, ages 19 and up

This workshop series focuses on the culture, history, health, and wealth of black hair. Presenters will include Patricia Hilliard-Nunn, senior lecturer at University of Florida’s African American Studies program; Ryan Kearse, director of Bly’s School of Cosmetology; Reginald Lewis of Elite Hair Studio and Country Boy Cutz. The series concludes with a Black Hair Mini Expo on March 2.

Freedom Quilt – Black History Month Book and Craft
Wednesday, February 5, 3:30 p.m., Micanopy Branch at the Micanopy Branch Dance Hall, ages 5-18
Make a Gee's Bend quilt for display in the library and listen to a reading of Henry's Freedom Box by Ellen Levine.

Black History Month Storytime
Thursday, February 6, 3 p.m., Headquarters Branch, ages 1-11
This special story time features picture books by African American writers and a quilt square paper craft.

African American Read-a-Thon
Saturday, Feb. 8, 11:30 a.m., Millhopper Branch, ages 1-11
Come listen as teachers and leaders in our community read or tell a story that speaks to them about what it means to be African American. Readers will include Gainesville city commissioners Gigi Simmons and Gail Johnson, and CEO Eric Godet, and School Board of Alachua County member Tina Certain.

Coming of Age in Mississippi Book Discussion
Saturday, Feb. 8, 2 p.m., Headquarters Branch, all ages
Discuss Anne Moody’s memoir “Coming of Age in Mississippi” with University of Florida’s Center for the Humanities and the Public Sphere. Moody’s autobiography is a harrowing account of black life in the rural South and a powerful affirmation of one person’s ability to affect change.

African American and Indigenous People Health Fair
Saturday, February 8, 11 a.m.-4 p.m., Library Partnership Branch, ages 12 and older
Presenters and health care workers will address health concerns and treatments, including alternative and holistic health services, at this fair facilitated by Professor Padma K.A. Shakoor.

ArtSpace: Little Dresses for Africa
Wednesday, February 12, 4 p.m., Waldo Branch, ages 12 and older
Saturday, Feb. 15, 2 p.m., Waldo Branch, ages 12 and older
Sew a dress (from a pillowcase pattern) for a girl or shorts for a boy for the project. Registration required.

The Life and Work of Toni Morrison
Sunday, Feb. 16, 2 p.m., Headquarters Branch, all ages
Watch “Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am,” followed by a reading and discussion of her work.

Black History Month – Project Beautiful 365
Tuesday, February 18, 6:30 p.m., High Springs Branch, all ages
Arts educator and Project Beautiful Executive Director 365 Shera Sherman will lead a journey through African American history with movement, drama, and words.

African American Read-In
Saturday, Feb. 22, 2 p.m., Hawthorne Branch, all ages
Discover a new favorite author or revisit a familiar friend as we share works by African American authors both current and historic. We're celebrating African American literature in poetry, story, and song in conjunction with the 30th Annual National African American Read-In. Refreshments provided by the Hawthorne Women’s Club.

African American Read-In
Sunday, February 23, 2 p.m. Alachua Branch, all ages
This event, created by Dr. Jerrie Cobb Scott, salutes black authors and black literature (old and new). Special guests include Chief of Police of the City of Alachua Chad Scott, poet and artist Jacqui Moorer, Alachua County Poet Laureate E. Stanley Richardson, and Santa Fe High School Assistant Principal Bonnie Bing.

For more details or to schedule an interview, please contact Rachel Cook at 352-334-3909.

If a person with a disability needs an accommodation in order to participate in this event he or she is entitled, at no cost to him or her, to the provision of certain assistance.  Please contact the Alachua County Library District at 352-334-3910 at least three (3) days prior to the event.  TTY users, please call 711 (Florida Relay Service).

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