I have had the opportunity to attend some wonderful events. My Black History Month wrap-up includes movies, art and mimosas. As an adult, I have begun to really appreciate the richness of black history. Understanding that there is more to our history than what we were taught in schools, has been a steady source of empowerment.
The community has hosted a plethora of events that showcased our excellence, power and magic. Notable ones that I attended include: Legacy Lectures, the Creative Minds AIDS Awareness Art Show, On the Beat St. Pete Black Panther Preview Event, 3rd Annual Black Arts and Film Festival, 2018 Black History Expo, and the More than a Mom Network: Moms and Mimosas.
Legacy Lectures– part of the Legacy Week Programming, featured a panel of awesome and fearless female leaders within the community discussing the topic of “How to be and stay beautiful and strong”. Panelists included Dr. Tonjua Williams – St. Petersburg College, President, Dr. Allyson Watson – USFSP, Dean of Education, Mrs. Karen Davis-Pritchett – Director of Provider and Community Relations, Empath Health, and Ms. Lakisha Falana – Principal, Maximo Elementary.
The Burg Cares, Creative Minds AIDS Awareness Art Show – held downtown at the Iberian Rooster featured original artwork by various talented black artists. There were also spoken word and vocal artist that shared their gifts and talents. The event was the vision of Shaundra Allison of On the Beat St. Pete.
On the Beat St. Pete and Black Power 96 FM’s Black Panther Preview Red Carpet Event – One of these days I’m going to make it on time for the red carpet. Any who, On the Beat St. Pete and Black Power 96. FM hosted a pre-screening viewing party for the box office mega hit, Marvel’s Black Panther. I’m still on a Wakanda high myself. Their program featured drummers, and dancers, and guest were provided with some awesome swag bags. It was beautiful to witness the community coming out to show their support. The theater was packed from top to bottom. Everyone was dressed in their finest African and Black Panther inspired attire. I love watching movies with my people because we are so animated and full of commentary. This by far was one of the most memorable event of the month.
Carla Bristol’s, Galleria 909‘s 3rd Annual Black Arts and Film Festival – was outstanding. Two films were shown that night, Art in the City directed by Jabaar Edmonds and Dundu Dole: A Story of Inspiration. I had previously viewed Art in the City so, the Dundu Dole Documentary was a pleasant surprise. I cried, smiled and danced in my seat during the film. It was beautifully done and highlighted the importance of arts in the black community. My hope is that one day art initiatives in the black community be equally funded, as they are in non-black areas. I’m not certain when it will be shown again, but be on the look out for it. It was written, produced and directed by two black women.
ReDefiner’s World Language Black History Expo – was truly amazing. The event featured Kummba dancers and drummers, Heard ‘Em Say Teen Poetry, Sheree L. Greer’s Kitchen Table Literary Arts , Exciting Central Tampa Baptist Church and a Mary McLeod Bethune Cookman re-enactment by Ersula Knox-Odom. It was most definitely a family friendly event chocked full of entertainment and education. The black dollar circulated heavily that day. I had a chance to support several black owned businesses. I was actually a vendor at this event and was moved by the amount of support that I received.
More than a Mom Network: Moms and Mimosa – was the perfect ending to a busy month. Hosted by Andresea K. Jackson, founder of More than a Mom Network, the brunch was held at the the beautiful Jackson’s Bistro on the vibrant and busy waterfront of Tampa Bay. Anytime I attend an event , I always look for the lesson in it. I walked away understanding the importance of manifestation. The guest speaker, Rose Walker shared with us her real life experiences of speaking the life she wanted into existence. It was the perfect word at the perfect time. The More than a Mom Network have several events coming up. If you are a mom, you should most definitely consider attending.
Another nugget that I walked away with was from a business perspective. It came by way of interaction with another guest. If someone inquires about your services, please don’t say, “I’m not cheap”, even if they ask you about pricing. Doing so is an insult to a perspective client. In that 1 minute you make the assumption that one they can’t afford your services or two are looking for a hook-up, both are incorrect. Direct them to your website for pricing information and let them make the determination if they can afford your services or not. Chances are they liked something about you and needed a service that you were providing and reached out to you.
February has been good to me. I can’t remember the last time I had so much fun celebrating black history month. Remember we are standing the shoulders of giants and that your dreams are possible! On February 28th, I’m going to share my product haul from black owned businesses (BOBs) during Black History Month.