The Crocker Art Museum is celebrating Black History Month in a big way with music, crafts, art and a local marketplace. The third annual Black History Month Celebration: A Free Family Festival will be held Monday, Feb. 17 from 11am to 3pm at the museum.
Stacey Shelnut-Hendrick, director of education for the Crocker, said each year organizers choose a different focus for the event. This year’s focus is music.
“Since we are a major art institution, it’s nice for us to have the opportunity to talk about African American contributions in the arts,” performing and visual, she said.
Performers will include the Saint Gabriel Celeste Brass Band, one-man band Winko, who performs out of his mobile piano bar dubbed The Acoustic Sanctuary, gospel music from the Phoenix Park Kids Concert Choir, steel drum group Harry Best and Shabang, and more.
On the Main Stage of the auditorium, Puppets and Motion will offer music, folk tales and interactive entertainment for families. Studio T Urban Dance Academy will do a tribute to the Jacksons, Daphne Burgess will host hands-on trade bead workshop and discuss the sharing of traditions across cultures. Sisters Quilting Collective will demonstrate and display their work and tell stories about the history of quilting in the Black community.
The courtyard will feature local artisans selling products from natural soaps to ceramics at the Black and Beautiful Arts and Crafts Marketplace. Marketing Coordinator Tanya Torres said the marketplace, which aims to highlight local Black crafters, is her favorite part of the day.
“It’s pretty amazing. The people coming together and having that experience is awesome.” She added the entire day is built around the purpose of introducing people of all ages to local artists, crafters and performers.
“(The day) is family oriented but you see a lot of elders come without children,” said Shelnut-Hendrick. “There’s a wonderful cross-section of people who come through it.”
Black History Month: A Free Family Festival is held in partnership with Sojourner Truth Multicultural Art Museum. Click here for more information and an event schedule.

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