Not sure how to celebrate Black History Month this year? We’ve got you covered! Here’s a list of a few ways you can celebrate, learn about and be inspired right in your own backyard. From virtual events, to in-person markets, to things you can do from the comfort of your own home—there’s something for everyone.
Attend an event
Art Gallery of Alberta events and exhibits
- The Art Gallery of Alberta (AGA) is hosting BOM YEG’s Black Futures Market to kick off the first weekend of Black History Month. There will be 20 vendors featured over two days.
- The AGA is featuring a free screening of John Ware Reclaimed by Albertan filmmaker Cheryl Foggo.
- You can also catch an exhibition from 5 Artists, 1 Love, which is an annual Black History Month event showcasing the artistic vibrancy and range of Edmonton’s African-Canadian communities, from Angola to Zanzibar, Tobago to Togo, and Barbados to Brazil, promoting emerging and established artists, social, cultural awareness and celebrates Black excellence.
High Level Bridge light up
- The High Level Bridge in Edmonton will be lit up in celebration of Black History Month on February 5. The bridge will display brown and black colours to commemorate Black History Month. This will be the first time the bridge is lit for Black History Month!
- Take your friends and family for a winter walk with a warm drink to view the bridge lit up in celebration.
Learn something new
Edmonton Public Library
- The Edmonton Public Library is sharing a list of some great reads on Black History in Canada. Click here to check them out.
- Participate in a variety of virtual workshops, performances and activities at MacEwan University designed to engage, inspire and educate individuals about the ways Black Canadians have influenced our country’s culture and legacy. Click here to learn more.
University of Calgary
- The University of Calgary is holding an online Let’s Talk series with various authors and scholars about Black History Month online throughout the month of February.
The Calgary Public Library
The Calgary Public Library is hosting multiple events to celebrate and learn during the month of February, including the following:
- An Evening with Lawrence Hill.
- Black in Calgary: Where have we been and where are we going?
- We Are the Roots: Black Settlers and their Experiences of Discrimination on the Canadian Prairies.
The Calgary Folk Music Festival
- The Block Heater series is putting on Black Art: A Conversation, an exploration of black diasporic art, creativity and activism, hosted by Toronto musician and actress Shakura S’Aida. Watch online on February 20, from 3 to 4:30 p.m.
Watch a movie by a Black Canadian filmmaker
The Calgary Public Library has put together a list of 12 noteworthy documentary films to watch during Black History Month, check them out here.
Support a local Black-owned business
Check out this list of Black-owned businesses featured by The Black Owned Market (BOM YEG). BOM YEG was created to uplift the Black community including Black creatives, entrepreneurs and businesses.
Small Black-owned businesses lack the benefits of their counterparts, such as generational wealth and access to funding due to systemic racism and the legacy of racial oppression. By providing marginalized business owners with a platform, BOM YEG helps relieve economic disparity, increases visibility and diversifies the Edmonton market.
P.S. Don’t forget to visit our Instagram page for a chance to win a curated sweetheart box by BOM YEG with items from some of these businesses.
BLK ROSE Candle
Black woman owned, small batch, handmade candles. Through their candles, they aim to celebrate Black stories and are committed to investing 15 per cent of their proceeds to community initiatives.
KAHXI Men’s Essentials
Well thought out and constructed men’s products designed to elevate your confidence, allowing you to focus on the things that matter.
Oluchi Nayaa Global Lifestyles
A social purpose business where culture and sustainable handmade products meet.
Authentic and delicious Jamaican delights.
Jenisis The Brand
A clothing brand where chic, glam and sexy meet without compromising comfort. From the look down to the feel of the material, every piece is created with love.
Rêve Naturals is a handmade product line dedicated to helping individuals reduce the toxins in their lives and achieve their dream skin, hair and home the natural way. Check out our spotlight on this brand from 2021!
Natural Humms Candles & Wellness
Natural Humms Candles and Wellness is a small-batch company based in Edmonton, Alberta. Their mission is to provide premium, high-quality products that are healthy for your skin and body.
Reux et Remi
Home, décor and lifestyle products inspired by children.
Buff Experts, with the goal of helping people with common body skin issues like body acne and hyperpigmentation, transform problematic skin to glowing, healthy skin.
Handcrafted artisanal aromatic bitters, inspired by and made in the city we call home: Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Bitters add a layer of flavour complexity to cocktails, mocktails, coffee and more. A drop or two will elevate your bartending game to a whole new level.
Timiro Mohamed is an award-winning Somali-Canadian spoken word poet whose practice is rooted in responsible storytelling. An exploration of identity, self and community, her work is a labour of love inspired by the generations of storytellers who came before her.