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Here's how to celebrate Black History Month on the North Shore

From film screenings to productions, there is much going on to honour and celebrate Black History Month
The Polygon’s As We Rise exhibition is on until mid-May. | The Polygon

Since 1995 the country has been officially recognizing February as Black History Month, an annual observance dedicated to celebrating the history, achievements and culture of Black Canadians. Across North and West Vancouver are a multitude of ways to both enhance education and support Black artistry - for the full round up, see below.

Black History Month in Film

Capilano University will be hosting a film program, with three screenings running on Feb. 3, 10 and 17. If you only have time for one showing make it Viper on Feb. 17, a piece created by local filmmaker Raine LeMay which follows the story of a young Black trumpet player and his band living in 1940’s Vancouver, as they deal with the loss of their beloved local music club.

Feb. 3 - 17, Capilano University. Visit the University’s website for more information on BHM at Capilano.

As We Rise: Photography from the Black Atlantic

At the end of the month the Polygon Gallery will present As We Rise, a collection of more than 100 photographs that champion both Black artists and subjects. The touring exhibition is dedicated to the Wedge Collection, Canada’s largest, privately owned contemporary art collection that focuses on exploring African diasporic culture and contemporary Black life.

Feb. 24 - May 14, The Polygon Gallery. More information is on the gallery’s website.

Children’s education

Schools throughout North and West Vancouver are amping up their education offerings this month, with a hosting of special events, talks, workshops and assemblies. Carson Graham Secondary will be having its first Black History Month school assembly on Feb. 6, while Seymour Heights Elementary will be working with its own students to curate a dedicated education program. It’s worth checking in with your local school to see what’s available for your family.

Throughout the month of February, various schools.

Black History Matters

The Presentation House Theatre’s Giselle Clarke-Trenaman has been working closely with the Museum of North Vancouver to put together a production that is both educational and engaging for children and their parents. Running for an hour from 1 p.m. on Saturday, the show Black History Matters delves into the symbolism of the Sankofa bird and its meaning within an African Diaspora context.

Feb. 4, MONOVA. More information can be found at the museum’s event listings webpage.

Library resources

The District, City and West Vancouver library collect books and materials on Black culture and history year round and so materials are readily available for those hoping to get educated this month. Alongside the abundance of reading material are film screenings, including a screening of John Ware Reclaimed at the City Library on Feb. 1, and presentations. Visit the respective websites of the District, City and West Vancouver libraries to see what’s on.

Throughout the month of February, respective libraries.

This is a continuously updating article. If you know of any local events or occurrences happening locally to celebrate Black History Month, contact [email protected]

Mina Kerr-Lazenby is the North Shore News’ Indigenous and civic affairs reporter. This reporting beat is made possible by the Local Journalism Initiative.

[email protected]

A previous edition of this story incorrectly stated that the Black History Month in Film was hosted at UBC, and not Capilano University. This has been amended.