Celebrate Black History Month in Indiana

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Robert F. Kennedy Speech, April 4, 1968.
Robert F. Kennedy Speech, April 4, 1968.
Photo courtesy Indianapolis Recorder Collection, Indiana Historical Society

Indiana celebrates national Black History Month in February, coinciding with the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass. The following are ideas for honoring this history:

In 2012, the Indiana Historical Society will feature its 11th annual Indiana Black History Challenge. Take the challenge at the IHS Library in Indianapolis for a chance to win great prize packages. IHS will also extend its interactive “You Are There” exhibit about Robert F. Kennedy’s 1968 speech in Indianapolis, when he announced the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to a stunned crowd. Revolutionary hologram technology allows you to be swept up in that historic moment with Kennedy and his supporters in the Hoosier capital that evening. The exhibit continues through April 14, 2012.

The Indiana State Museum in Indianapolis offers a variety of programs for Black History Month, including “Represent: Art by African-Americans” from the Indiana State Museum Collection. “Represent” displays works from the museum’s permanent collection and features noteworthy new artwork purchased from emerging and established artists who have lived and worked in the Hoosier State.

The Madame Walker Theatre Center in Indianapolis will offer Jazz on the Avenue featuring a live band, cocktails and buffet with the best in African-American local jazz on the last Friday in February. Don’t miss Soul Food Friday, introducing some of the best in local soul food caterers and restaurants, also on Friday, Feb. 24. African-American artists will also be featured in the theatre’s new lobby exhibition space all month long.

Art & Soul at the Indianapolis Artsgarden” is the Arts Council‘s annual celebration of African-American art and artists in Indiana. This year’s offering will feature a month-long lineup of music, poetry, storytelling, dance and visual art.

Bloomington will host a month-long celebration with the theme “Black History Month – Bloomington Style: Black Women in History & Culture.” For events and information, visit www.bloomington.in.gov/safe.

Travel the Indiana African American Heritage trail in southern Indiana.

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