New Brunswick Observes Black History Month

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ—Officials from both the City of New Brunswick and Rutgers University are planning to hold events in observation of Black History Month. 

The Hub City kicked off its celebration of Black History Month with a screening of Freedom Riders at the New Brunswick Free Public Library on February 1.  The documentary recounts the experiences of civil rights activists in the 1960's, as they travel into the Deep South to challenge local segregation laws.

Freedom Riders was the first of three documentaries that will be screened at the library, the other two being The Loving Story scheduled for 2pm on  February 8, and Slavery by Another Name being screened at 2 pm on February 22.

The film screenings and accompanying panels were the product of a joint effort between the New Brunswick Free Public Library, the New Brunswick African American Heritage Committee, and the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Together, the three films make up this year's theme for Black History Month, titled "Created Equal: America's Civil Rights Struggle."

In addition, residents can attend the Alfa Art Gallery's "Celebrating African American Heritage" exhibit, which will run from February 6 to the 25, with an opening ceremony on Friday February 7 at 6:30pm. The exhibit will feature works from different African America and African artists in and around the Hub City.

Also, Rutgers University will be hosting a multitude of events across its campuses, and in the New Brunswick area.  On Friday January 31 the UniversityBlack Student Union held its opening ceremony at the Busch Campus Center, which included dinner, speakers, presentations and performances. 

Nearly a dozen such events will run through early March, including a screening of Memphis at the State Theater on Friday February 7 at 8 pm, and the 14th Annual "Jazza N' Java" poetry night at the Crossroads Theater on Friday February 7 at 7pm.