Western Illinois University will celebrate Black History Month throughout February, with a variety of activities, speakers and events planned.

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the events vary from virtual to in person.

The Black History Month schedule for the remainder of the month includes:

Friday, Feb. 19 – 6 p.m. – movie night, “Moonlight,” virtual event: The LGBT*QA Resource Center and Gwendolyn Brooks Cultural Center will celebrate Black History Month with a free, online movie night. The film is a powerful and inspiring coming of age drama of a young Black man growing up in Miami. For more information about the film, and to get a link to the event contact Kairo Scott at KJ-Scott3@wiu.edu or Townsend-Riley at K-Townsendriley@wiu.edu.

Saturday, Feb. 20 – 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. – Second annual Men of Color Regional Retreat – virtual event: The retreat will feature special guest facilitator Bryant K. Smith, the creator of thought-provoking and award-winning experiential learning programs. He has witnessed the power of diversity in the boardroom, classroom and the court of competition, and is dedicated to helping participants reframe their views on difference, communication and male development. The event is sponsored by the Bradley University Office of Diversity & Inclusion, Cornell College of Intercultural Life, Monmouth College Intercultural Life and the WIU Multicultural Center. Registration is free to all students and the deadline to register is 10 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 18.

• Monday, Feb. 22 – 5-6:30 p.m., Beauty and the Beast: Black History Edition, virtual event: The interactive workshop and performance is sponsored by the Black Greek Poets and will explore the dualities of Blackness, as it pertains to Black movements, Hip Hop and cuisine. The event is open free to the public and the Zoom meeting ID is 976 7428 8626. For more information on the event, contact Townsend-Riley at K-Townsendriley@wiu.edu.

Wednesday, Feb. 24 – 5-6:30 p.m. – “We Got Us,” a leadership workshop: This event is presented by The Underrep’d, an organization for Black college students who attend Predominantly White Institutions. Success tips will be offered and the event is open free to the public. The event can be joined at wiu.zoom.us/j/96061983704. For more information on the event, contact Townsend-Riley K-Townsendriley@wiu.edu.

Thursday, Feb. 25 – 7-8 p.m. – “The Get Down,” Zoom party: This event is hosted by the Casa Latina Cultural Center and the Gwendolyn Brooks Cultural Center to celebrate Black History Month. “The Get Down” is an event where Black history is celebrated through music. Music all across Latin America has strong influences from Black Culture, and it is important to recognize the influence of the culture as it may not be evident through the appearances of prominent artists. For more information about the event, or to obtain a link to join, contact Noe Jurado at N-Jurado@wiu.edu or Townsend-Riley K-Townsendriley@wiu.edu.

• Friday, Feb. 26 – 6:30-7:30 p.m. – Beauty and the Beast: Black History Edition, virtual event: The interactive workshop and performance is sponsored by the Black Greek Poets and will explore the dualities of Blackness, as it pertains to Black movements, Hip Hop and cuisine. The event is open free to the public and the Zoom meeting ID is 976 7428 8626. For more information on the event, contact Townsend-Riley K-Townsendriley@wiu.edu.

For more information about Black History Month events, contact Carl Ervin at CW-Ervin@wiu.edu.

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Sean Leary is an author, director, artist, musician, producer and entrepreneur who has been writing professionally since debuting at age 11 in the pages of the Comics Buyers Guide. An honors graduate of the University of Southern California masters program, he has written over 50 books including the best-sellers The Arimathean, Every Number is Lucky to Someone and We Are All Characters.