Wake County Public Libraries will recognize Black History Month with a series of more than 100 free programs at locations across the county in February. “Celebrate Black Brilliance” features author talks, oral histories, art lessons, movies, family storytimes, musical performances and much more.
“This is an excellent opportunity for residents to learn more about the depth of the African American experience, including history, culture and creativity,” said Wake County Commissioner Dr. James West. “From children participating in special storytimes to teens discovering diverse graphic novels to adults exploring hip-hop production and entrepreneurism, there truly is something for everyone to participate in and enjoy.”
Events are available for kids, teens, adults and seniors. Some require advance registration, so please read the descriptions carefully when you’re making your plans. Featured events include:
Artistic Quilts with Sharon Barrow
Saturday, Feb. 4, 10:30–11:30 a.m.
East Regional Library
Enjoy Sharon Barrow's artistic African American quilts and explore her quilting ideas and techniques. Sign up here.
Discover Diverse Manga with Saturday AM
Tuesday, Feb. 7, 5:30–6:30 p.m.
West Regional Library
Meet JeyOdin and Odunze Oguguo, two bright stars in the manga universe, an increasingly popular genre of Japanese comic books and graphic novels. JeyOdin is the creator and owner of the “Hammer” series currently published through Saturday AM, and Odunze Oguguo (known as “Whyt Manga” on YouTube) is the writer and illustrator of the hit manga series “Apple Black.” Saturday AM publisher and Morrisville native Frederick Jones will join these two artists and discuss the release of his new hit “Clock Striker”!
Draw Diverse Manga
Thursday, Feb. 9, 6–7 p.m.
Morrisville Community Library
Meet Morrisville native and Saturday AM publisher Frederick L. Jones and discover his manga novel “The Massively Multiplayer World of Ghosts.” Illustrator JeyOdin will demonstrate how to draw diverse manga. All supplies will be provided. Registration is required – please sign up at the Morrisville Community Library in person or by calling 919-463-8460.
Naval Stores and the Real Tar Heels: Discussion with Earl Ijames
Thursday, Feb. 9, 6–7:30 p.m.
Southeast Regional Library
North Carolina History Museum curator and local farmer Earl Ijames discusses the term "tar heels" and the significance the longleaf pine has played in North Carolina's history. Register here.
Black History in Early Apex
Tuesday, Feb. 21, 6:30–7:30 p.m.
Eva Perry Regional Library
Listen to oral histories of Apex residents' resilience and resistance. Presented by author/historian Warren Holleman, students from Middle Creek High School, and their teacher, Matt Scialdone. Registration is required.
Discover Yourself in the AZA Universe
Saturday, Feb. 25, 2–3 p.m.
Cary Regional Library
“Everyone deserves to see themselves represented in the superhero genre,” says Jazmin Truesdale, creator of “The Keepers” graphic novel series. Drop in to meet the creator, learn more about the heroes and villains of the Aza Universe, and find out how Jazmin came to create this multicultural graphic novel universe.
Hip Hop Beat Making with Pierce Freelon
Saturday, Feb. 25, 4–5 p.m.
Oberlin Regional Library
Pierce Freelon, Grammy-nominated musician and co-creator of PBS's “Beat Making Lab,” offers an innovative instruction session on music production and entrepreneurship. Learn how to compose, sample and write a song using only a laptop. Registration is required.
Soul Music with Shenette Swann
Unfortunately, these events have been canceled.
Shenette Swann is a contemporary R&B singer-songwriter. Come enjoy her creative and inspiring music and singing.
Meet the DJ Ed Luva
Five dates, times and locations
Join DJ Ed Luva as he spins family-friendly favorites from celebrated musicians. Get all your DJ questions answered in this interactive program!
Capital City Steppers: Chicago Style Steppin'
Three dates, times and locations
Chicago-Style Steppin' is an urban, partner dance that can be graceful, funky, intimate, contagious, soulful, competitive and smooth all at the same time. Come see this dance in true fashion taught by Capital City Steppers, and get a glimpse into history of this captivating dance that originated in Chicago.
Learn more about these events at wake.gov/blackbrilliance.