The Kenilworth Historical Society will present a colorful, enlightening program celebrating the uplifting, unifying, family and cultural traditions of Kwanzaa on Sunday, January 26, 2020. The inspiring, educational and entertaining interactive program, which will highlight the history, principles and customs of the joyous African-American holiday through song, drumming, crafts and dance, has universal value for all cultures and age groups. It will feature acclaimed Dr. Daisy Nelson Century, a professional Kwanzaa specialist, actress, historical interpreter, author, educator and motivational speaker whose programs have inspired and delighted audiences throughout the United States.
The January 26 celebration will take place at the historic Oswald J. Nitschke House (49 South 21 Street, Kenilworth). It will begin with a tasting of traditional Kwanzaa foods at 1:15 p.m., followed by the program at 2 p.m. Admission is $10 for adults and $5 for children under the age of 12. Advance registration is requested, as seating is limited. The Nitschke House has an elevator and is fully accessible. For information and reservations, please call 908-709-0434.
Participants in the January 26 program will have the opportunity to learn about and develop an appreciation for African culture through Dr. Century’s lively, engaging presentation of the principles, colors, symbols, foods and other significant elements of Kwanzaa, which is based on African year-end harvest festivals. From the time of its founding in 1966 by Dr. Maulana “Ron” Karenga, a professor of black studies, Kwanzaa has been celebrated annually in the United States from December 26 through January 1, with each day honoring one of the holiday’s seven principles (unity, self-determination, collective work and responsibility, cooperative economics, sense of purpose, creativity, faith).
The January 26 program at the Nitschke House is being made possible in part by a 2019 HEART (History, Education, Arts Reaching Thousands) Grant from the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders. The Kenilworth Education Association PRIDE Committee is generously contributing food for the event.
Proceeds will benefit the Kenilworth Historical Society’s Oswald J. Nitschke House (c. 1880) “living history” museum and cultural arts center by helping defray operating and programming costs.
Dr. Daisy Nelson Century is a Philadelphia-based Kwanzaa specialist, educator, actress, historical interpreter, motivational speaker, author and radio talk show host. She holds B.S., M.Ed. and Ed.D. degrees and has taught for more than 20 years in the Philadelphia School System as an award-winning science teacher. Her acting career has included lead roles in several independent movies, and an affinity for history led to her successful profession as a historical interpreter who travels throughout the United States effectively portraying such historical figures as Sojourner Truth, Harriet Tubman, Mary Fields, Phyllis Wheatley, Hatshepsut, Madame CJ Walker and Bessie Coleman. As an author, she has penned four books: Belle, Ms. Emmaline’s Little Book of Wit and Wisdom, Zach and His Lucky Zebra Socks and Deedle, Deedle Your House is on Fire!
The Kenilworth Historical Society (www.kenilworthhistoricalsociety.org) is an independent, non-profit, tax-exempt, 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to the research, preservation and interpretation of the Oswald J. Nitschke House, local history and culture.
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