CRYSTAL LAKE – McHenry County College music faculty presentations, a poetry slam, a free showing of an Oscar-nominated movie, and a multimedia presentation by award-winning storyteller Barry Bradford are highlights of McHenry County College’s celebration of African American History Month in February.
Kicking off the monthlong celebration will be “I Have a Dream – 50 Years Later,” a presentation on Martin Luther King’s famous speech, by master storyteller Barry Bradford, from 12:30 to 2 p.m. and from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Wednesday in the MCC Luecht Conference Center.
On Feb. 13, MCC adjunct music instructor Pat Gaughan will present “Development of the Blues,” from noon to 1 p.m. in Room B166-167. Gaughan will discuss the impact of slavery and oppression in America that led to the formation of musical styles including Field hollers, spirituals and blues, and will perform vocals and guitar.
On Feb. 14, MCC music instructor Paige Lush will host a talk about “Jubilee Singing Groups” from 10 to 11 a.m. in Room B166-167. It will trace the use of choral groups from historically black colleges and universities to raise money and disseminate African-American religious and folk music throughout the U.S., Europe and the Caribbean.
An Oscar-nominated movie will be shown Feb. 18 in the Luecht Conference Center with three showtimes: 9 to 11 a.m., 1 to 3 p.m., and 5 to 7:30 p.m. For movie details, visit www.mchenry.edu/aahm.
The celebration also include a poetry slam and open mic from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Feb. 20 in the Luecht Conference Center, and a faculty-led book discussion about “Home” by Toni Morrison, with English instructor Cynthia Van Sickle, from 2:30 to 4 p.m. Feb. 21 in the MCC Multicultural Center, Room A252.
The African American History Month Committee, along with MCC students, will host a collection drive during February to benefit the Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, and local organizations and churches, including PADS in Woodstock, and Turning Point.
A collection box will be outside of the MCC Student Life Office, Room A252. Items being collected are flip-top lids from pop cans and any other aluminum cans; toiletries, including toilet paper, toothbrushes, paper towels, shampoo, cleaning supplies and women’s hygiene products; and all types of household cleaning supplies, including bleach, laundry detergent, dryer sheets, sponges, Pine Sol, Windex and Formula 409 cleaning spray.
The events are sponsored by the MCC’s African American History Month Committee, Multicultural Affairs, Black Student Union, Luecht Conference Center and Student Life.
African American History Month events are free and open to the public. For information, call the MCC Student Life Office at 815-455-8550 or visit www.mchenry.edu/aahm.