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posted: 2/3/2014 4:07 PM

MCC celebrates Black History with food, music, art, lectures

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Submitted by McHenry County College

McHenry County College is celebrating Black History Month with food, music, art, lectures and a Golden Globes award-winning movie. The theme for this year's celebration is "Overcoming: The Journey Continues."

A Martin Luther King Jr. and Nelson Mandela Remembrance Day kicked off the month Jan. 21.

Students and staff will continue the Black History Month celebration Wednesday, Feb. 5, and Thursday, Feb. 6, with a soul food lunch and live entertainment featuring jazz musicians and Chicago-style stepping dancers, respectively.

On Thursday, Feb. 13, a graffiti art, or "tag," event will showcase art, photos and discussions about the worldwide phenomenon known as graffiti art from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Commons area. The event is meant to showcase art that may not be considered "real art," but many books, movies, video games and clothing companies have made millions of dollars from it and many people in the art world put graffiti art in the same category as "modern art." Students and staff will have an opportunity to paint and explore ways to create their style of art.

On Tuesday, Feb. 18, Patricia Bearden, co-founder of the Chicago-based International Society of Sons and Daughters of Slave Ancestry, presents "Researching African American Genealogy: It's Complicated!" from 10 to 11:30 a.m. in the Luecht Conference Center.

Bearden will use her own oral histories to demonstrate the challenges incurred when researching African-American history. She discovered the story of her great-great grandmother who took the name Fredonia after her emancipation. Participants will learn how she distinguished fact from fiction and view her photos and a freedom quilt displaying pictures of former slaves.

On Thursday, Feb. 20, an Open Mic will take place at 7 p.m. in the Scot Room, behind the cafeteria. Performers are welcome to select some of their pieces from music written or originally performed by the black community. This event is open to all students, staff and community members.

A 2014 Golden-Globe award-winning movie will be shown Wednesday, Feb. 26 in the Luecht Conference Center with three different show times: 9 to 11:15 a.m., 1 to 3:15 p.m. and 5 to 7 p.m. For movie details, visit

All Black History Month events are free and open to the public. For more information, call the MCC Student Life Office at (815) 455-8550.