Feb. 1, 2023
Today is the first day of Black History Month, which is widely celebrated in Hunter Mill District and countywide. It is especially important for all of us take some time to learn about the legacy and achievements of Black Americans. Why? Because, despite it being 2023, we are still witnessing racism in our communities. Some of this racism is an undercurrent of perceived threats and some of it is more blatant with name calling, lack of opportunity and much worse. And sometimes the racism is structural.
One way for us to rid ourselves of racism is through education. Black History Month provides a multitude of opportunities to learn about the people and events that are so integral to our American story. I encourage everyone to do something this month to expand our minds and hearts – It can be as simple as having a conversation, reading a book or attending a service. Here are several Black History Month events and programs for your consideration:
Feb. 17: Black History Month Celebration
Unite, uplift and celebrate with neighbors at the county's Black History Month celebration on Feb. 17, 6:30 to 8 p.m. at the Fairfax County Government Center, 12000 Government Center Parkway, Fairfax. Learn more.
Feb. 19: The 1619 Project: A New Origin Story - Meet Nikole Hannah-Jones
The 1619 Project illuminates the legacy of slavery in the U.S. and highlights the contributions of Black Americans to American society. Nikole Hannah-Jones will discuss The 1619 Project, its reception, and her book, The 1619 Project: A New Origin Story.
The event is Feb. 19, 2 to 3 p.m. at The Alden at the McLean Community Center, 1234 Ingleside Ave. McLean. Learn more.
Monthlong: Fairfax County Public Library's Collection on Inspirational Black Inventors
The Library has put together a collection of books about Black inventors and their contributions. Examples include Changing the Equation: 50+ US Black Women in STEM by Tonya Bolden and A Child's Introduction to African American History by Jabari Asim. Learn more.
Saturdays in February: Frying Pan Baptist Meetinghouse at Frying Pan Farm Park
In honor of Black History Month, the Frying Pan Baptist Meetinghouse will be open each Saturday of February from noon to 2 p.m. Established in the 18th century, the original congregation of the meetinghouse included enslaved, free Black, and slaveholding members. Explore different facets of Black history in Floris and Herndon each weekend. Learn more.
Learn more about Black History Month activities at several other county parks.