Celebrate African American Heritage throughout February

BOSTON – February is Black History Month, and communities across Massachusetts are celebrating in a variety of ways, from art exhibits to musical performances, theater, tours, and more. Below are just a few of the ways you can celebrate throughout the month; for a complete list and daily updates visit massvacation.com/blackhistory.

Greater Boston Area

African American Patriots Tour – Tales of intrigue and bravery, poetry and defiance by black Bostonians will unfold during the 90-minute African American Patriots walking tour offered by the Freedom Trail Foundation. Visit the sites of key importance to both the revolution and the Abolitionist movement that led to the Civil War. Led by costumed guides, visitors view history through the eyes of revolutionaries such as Crispus Attucks, Phillis Wheatley, Peter Salem, Prince Hall and others. thefreedomtrail.org

Exhibits by African American Artists – Framingham’s Danforth Museum of Art
will feature the works of John Wilson and Richard Yarde through March 28, 2013. danforthmuseum.org

Museum of African American History – A special photography exhibit, The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
and Signs of Freedom, celebrates the life and legacy of Dr. King and other heroes of the Civil Rights Movement. Poignant scenes captured by Memphis photographer Ernest Withers include protest signs from the Civil Rights era and powerful broadsides from the Abolitionist Movement recall incredible campaigns for human liberty. afroammuseum.org

Roxbury’s Black History Tours – Join an informative trolley tour through three centuries of Boston’s historic Black neighborhoods. Follow the progression of black churches, gain an appreciation for the importance of the arts, learn about the struggles during the civil rights movement, and become more familiar with the movers, shakers, and strivers in Roxbury’s Black history. discoverroxbury.org

Cape Cod

Black History Month at the Zion Union Heritage Museum – The Hyannis museum will hold events each weekend in February, including a soul food dinner and entertainment by the “Heart and Soul” group at the Barnstable Senior Center on February 20, from 2-4 p.m. Admission is $15. Other events will feature talks and presentations by prominent local members of the African-American and Cape Verdean communities. zionunionheritagemuseum.org

Cape Cod Community College – A variety of activities including a poetry slam series, an African dance and drum performance, and Gospel concerts mark Black History Month on Cape Cod. capecod.edu

Central Massachusetts

Gallery of African Art – A unique collection representative of various regions, tribes, and traditions of the African continent has been assembled by collector Gordon B. Lankton. Weekly Gallery Tours: Begin Thursday Jan. 3, 4-7 p.m. The Gallery of African Art is pleased to announce a series of regularly scheduled FREE tours (donations accepted) every Thursday, beginning Thursday, January 3, 2013, 4-7 p.m. Musician and ethnomusicology expert Zach Combs of Crocodile River Music will offer informal tours of the Gallery collection. galleryofafricanart.org

North of Boston

Louisa May Alcott’s Orchard House – Long known for her classic literary works, Louisa May Alcott was also a member of a fiercely abolitionist family. In commemoration of Black History Month, special guided tours throughout the month of February will highlight the Alcott’s commitment to antislavery and social justice, as evidenced by Miss Alcott’s own service as a Civil War nurse, among many other reform activities. louisamayalcott.org

Western Massachusetts

Amherst BHM Project – The BHM Project is a community event, calling on passionate and talented artists of ALL nationalities and artistic interpretations to volunteer their time and talent on Saturday, February 16, 2013 to paint donated merchant windows with themes relevant to Black history. amherstma.gov

Old Deerfield Productions presents: TRUTH, Northampton – TRUTH, a new American opera about Sojourner Truth returns February 16, at 8:00 p.m. to the Academy of Music Theatre in Northampton, as the kickoff for a national/ international tour. This is a chamber version of the opera that sold out one year ago featuring five singers from New York playing multiple roles and a seven-piece chamber orchestra, conducted by the composer, Paula M. Kimper with sets by Amy Johnquest, lights by Lara Dubin and costumes by Jill St. Coeur. olddeerfieldproductions.org

Vocalist Angelique Kidjo
 – Hailed as “one of Africa’s most globally successful performers” by Billboard magazine, Kidjo ranks among one of the greatest forces in African music. The performance will be at the Mahaiwe Theatre in Great Barrington on February 23 at 8 p.m.  mahaiwe.org

About MOTT
The Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism (MOTT) is the state agency dedicated to promoting Massachusetts as a leisure-travel destination. An integral part of the state’s economy, tourism generates more than $915 million in state and local taxes and $14.4 billion in travel related expenditures and supports 121,500 in-state jobs. Web site: https://www.massvacation.com/