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Smyrna Celebrates Black History Month

Residents are invited to attend celebrations for Black History Month at the Smyrna Public Library.

The Smyrna Public Library will offer two exciting programs for children, families, and adults in celebration of Black History Month. With the donation and support from the Friends of the Smyrna Library, these programs are free and open to the public.

On Saturday, Feb. 23, the library will host a storytelling program for children and families from 11 a.m.-noon. The Cobb Cluster of the Southern Order of Storytellers, members of the Kuumba Storytellers, and the youth Tattle Tales group will be featured. Children and adults alike will share stories about notable African Americans and African dolls will be featured at the program as well.

“We can preserve our history by preserving the art of storytelling,” said storyteller Margaret Edinburgh. Edinburgh will be joined by Esther Culver, Amy Johnson and Mama Koku, as well as several youth storytellers. The storytellers will educate and entertain while also paying homage to important figures in black history.

On Sunday, Feb. 24 from 2-4 p.m., the library will offer a special Black History Month program for adults featuring two speakers, Robin Washington Banks and Charles Black. This program sponsored by the Friends of the Smyrna Library, is open to the public and will offer light refreshments.

Banks, an educator and author, is the great-granddaughter of Booker T. Washington and the daughter of a Tuskegee Airman. Her great-aunt was also one of the co-founders of Alpha Kappa Alpha, the first African American sorority. She focuses on promoting the philosophies of her great grandfather.

“It has become my life’s work to keep my great grandfather’s legacy alive by doing things that will draw attention to his philosophies and his work,” she said.

“Colors, Character and Choices,” will include stories about Banks' family and will highlight character as a powerful tool in bringing our diverse nation together in harmony.

Black is a professional actor on stage, screen, radio, video and television, a Special Correspondent for The Atlanta Inquirer newspaper, and a community activist. He served for many years on the Executive Committee of the Atlanta Branch of the NAACP of which he is a Life Member.

While attending Morehouse College, Black was one of only eight students taught by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and he also served as chairman of the Atlanta Student Movement in the 1960s, where he implemented the desegregation plan for lunch counters in Atlanta, negotiated desegregation of Atlanta's theaters and movie houses as well as Grady Hospital. He speech will focus on “Hidden Heroes of History” and sharing his experiences as a civil rights figure in Atlanta.

For more information, please call 770-431-2860 x 3 or visit www.smyrna-library.com.

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