What to Know
- February is Black History Month across the USA.
- During Black History Month, the city of Los Angeles also celebrates African American Heritage Month.
- Fun and educational events are happening around the city.
While many of the event organizers will correctly tell you that African American culture should be celebrated all year long, the celebration does serve as a good reminder for locals who are curious about becoming more enlightened, or anyone looking for a good excuse to participate in some exciting events happening around SoCal.
African American Heritage Month is cultural celebration taking place in Los Angeles, presented by the Department of Cultural Affairs, that runs concurrently with Black History Month nationwide.
Here is a round-up of stand-out African American Heritage events happening in Los Angeles over the next few weeks:
Feb. 1, 2019
- From Wednesdays to Sundays during Black History Month, the Paley Center will feature an interactive exhibit, host special screenings, and have family activities for visitors at their locations in Beverly Hills and New York City. The exhibits feature legendary Motown artists and put a spotlight on the 100th birthday anniversary of baseball icon Jackie Robinson. Click here for info on celebrating Black History Month at the Paley Center.
Feb. 5, 2019
- Hammer Museum will screen the documentary "Anita" followed by a conversation themed "Speaking Truth to Power" with a UCLA law professor who assisted Anita Hill's legal team. For more information click here.
Feb. 7, 2019
- The Pan African Film and Arts Festival (PAFF) is the largest Black film festival. The 12-day festival runs from Feb. 7 - Feb. 18 and will feature more than 170 new films. Aretha Franklin's long-delayed documentary "Amazing Grace" will be the red carpet screening on opening night. For more information, click here.
Feb. 13, 2019
- "They Run the Show" is a panel conversation with prominent African-American show-runners, creators, and executive producer from shows like "Empire," "Insecure," "Dear White People," and more. For info about how to buy tickets click here.
Feb. 16, 2019
- William Grant Still is the composer most associated with the Harlem Renaissance. His symphony will be performed by the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Walt Disney Concert Hall on multiple dates. Click here for ticket info.
Feb. 17, 2019
- Learn the basics of African-American genealogy and tips/tricks to find information about your family tree during this event held by the Los Angeles Central Library's History and Genealogy Department. More information available here.
- The 37th annual Black Dolls exhibit from collectors and artists will take place at the William Grant Still Arts Center. You can find more information about the event here.
Feb. 20, 2019
- Do you know your civil rights history? This is an interactive game for teens taking place at the Central Library on Feb 20. For a full list of the many events being held by the Los Angeles Public Library, (including a night for inventors, and the history of African-American music) click here.
Feb. 22, 2019
- Learn lessons from leaders of the civil rights movement at the Skirball Cultural Center, as Clarence B. Jones, Bernard Lafayette Jr., and former ambassador to the United Nations Andrew Young discuss the significance of the three 1965 Selma marches that led to the Voting Right Act and the civil rights work still being done today. Ticket information is available here.
Feb. 23, 2019
- Aquarium of the Pacific hosts it's 17th annual African American Festival, which features musicians, dancers, storytellers, arts and crafts. Click here for more info.
Feb. 25, 2019
- John C. Fremont Branch Library will host a read-in for children, inspired by Read-In programs created by The Black Caucus of the National Council of Teachers of English. Click here for more information.
- Paley Center hosts, "A Legendary Evening with Mary Wilson," a founding member of legendary group, The Supremes.
Feb. 26, 2019
- California African American Museum has many on-going exhibits worth checking out. You can find a full list here. However, CAAM will look into leveraging influence bringing in legendary hip-hop artist KRS-One for their event, "Black Celebrity & Activism." Click here for more info.
- Jonn C. Fremont Brach Library hosts a screening of "BlacKKKlansman" the true story of an African American police officer from Colorado who infiltrates a local Ku Klux Klan branch. Click here for more info.
Local news from across Southern California
- "California Bound" is a new exhibit at the California African American Museum that explores California - and Los Angeles' - history with slavery. Get a sneak peek into this interesting exhibit that sheds light on our local community, by watching the video at the top of this article. And follow @NBCLA for more videos like this.