Aurora group aims to turn Buffalo Wild Wings incident into 'teachable moment'

  • Justin Vahl of Montgomery is set to speak Saturday and Sunday during two conversation sessions hosted by the Aurora-based fraternity Boys II Men. The sessions, called "When They See Us Part 1: A Conversation with Young Men about Race, Reactions & Lessons Learned," will seek to find a "teachable moment" from the race-related incident Oct. 26 at Buffalo Wild Wings in Naperville.

      Justin Vahl of Montgomery is set to speak Saturday and Sunday during two conversation sessions hosted by the Aurora-based fraternity Boys II Men. The sessions, called "When They See Us Part 1: A Conversation with Young Men about Race, Reactions & Lessons Learned," will seek to find a "teachable moment" from the race-related incident Oct. 26 at Buffalo Wild Wings in Naperville. Paul Valade | Staff Photographer

 
 
Updated 11/15/2019 12:08 PM

The Aurora-based fraternal organization Boys II Men will host two conversation sessions this weekend to turn a race-related incident Oct. 26 at Buffalo Wild Wings in Naperville into a "teachable moment."

The sessions come three weeks after a multiracial group of 18 children and adults -- originally seated next to two white customers who were known to have made inappropriate race-related comments in the past -- was asked to move, then chose to leave.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Justin Vahl, one of the adults in the group of 18, will speak during the sessions, called "When They See Us Part 1: A Conversation with Young Men about Race, Reactions & Lessons Learned." Vahl's son, Ethan, is involved with Boys II Men as a member of its Juniors group.

The conversations are scheduled for 10:02 a.m. Saturday at the Aurora Public Library 150 S. River St., directed toward boys in elementary and middle school; and 6:02 p.m. Sunday at Aurora police headquarters, 1200 E. Indian Trail, for young men in high school and college. The events are open to all boys, young men and their parents.

The first two "When They See Us" conversations are planned to become part of a larger communitywide discussion series, Boys II Men said in an email promoting this weekend's events.

The events come days after police released a report containing interviews with several Buffalo Wild Wings employees and the white couple involved.

An attorney for the families in the group of 18 is working to address diversity, sensitivity, hiring, training and tolerance issues with Buffalo Wild Wings corporate leadership.

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