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African Burial Ground National Monument Hosts Kwanzaa Celebration, Now thru 12/28

Kwanzaa is a week-long African American holiday observed from today, Dec. 26 through Jan. 1, which focuses on the traditional African values of family, community responsibility, commerce and self improvement. The name is derived from the phrase, "matunda ya kwana" which means, "first fruits" in Swahili.

Celebrating Kwanzaa:

Take part in family-friendly activities as African Burial Ground National Monument observes the principles of Kwanzaa and shares the history of the burial ground.

Each Day: Art Display

Dec. 26

11:00AM: Opening Libation/Prayer for Unity

11:15AM: "Why We Celebrate Kwanzaa"

11:30AM: "All About Kwanzaa"

11:30AM: Screening: "The Black Candle"

1:00PM: Performance: Something Positive dancers

2:00PM: "The Black Nutcracker" by Uptown Dance Academy

Dec. 27

11:30AM: Commemoration of the 10th anniversary of the Rites of Ancestral Return featuring U.S. Olympian Tommie Smith and Mayor David Dinkins

2:00PM: Performance: singer Shelby Banks

3:00PM: Performance: Asase Yaa Culture Arts Foundation drummers and dancers

Dec. 28

11:00AM: Opening Libation/Prayer for Unity

11:30AM: "The Importance of Celebrating Kwanzaa" including youth readings and spoken word

NOON: Performance: Quest Youth Group (Afro-centric jazz)

1:30PM: Workshop: "The Significance of Cloth and Textiles inWest/Central African Societies" led by Pat Leonard

1:30PM: Performance: Fusha Dance Company
All events and activities are free and open to the public, but reservations are required. To RSVP, call (212) 637-2019. Schedule is subject to change

Plan Your Visit: African Burial Ground National Monument Visitor Center is open Tuesday through Saturday, 10 am to 4 pm. The memorial is currently closed for the winter season. It will reopen March 3, 2014.

The Kwanzaa celebration will take place at the African Burial Ground National Monument, located on the first floor of the Ted Weiss Federal Building at 290 Broadway in Lower Manhattan, close to Foley Square and just north of City Hall. Upon entering the building, members of the public will have to go through security screening.

All events are free & open to the public, however, space is limited & reservations are required for Kwanzaa programs and activities. To RSVP, call (212) 637-2019. For more information, visit or

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