Next month – February – is Black History Month, and while the International Civil Rights Center and Museum in Downtown Greensboro will be celebrating all month long, there’s one event closely associated with the month that is being moved until summer for the second year in a row.
The Civil Rights Museum Gala has always celebrated that historic Feb. 1, 1960 event – the start of the non-violent protest that became such an important and famous event. The gala in July will celebrate the sit-in but it celebrates the end result, which took place in summer of that year: July 25, the day the lunch counter became racially integrated.
However, Chairman of the Guilford County Board of Commissioners Skip Alston, who’s a co-founder of the museum, said this week that there is not going to be a void in February. He said the museum is very excited to be kicking off a brand new speaker series.
“We used to have our gala on Feb. 1, but we will have that on July 25,” Alston said, adding that that’s the date the lunch counter became officially integrated. “So, on Feb. 1, we are starting something new this year – we’re having a speaker series and book signing.”
The Civil Rights Center and Museum, in conjunction with NC. A&T State University, UNC Greensboro, Bennett College, and Guilford College are all coming together in February 2023 to help the museum host a number of civil rights leaders during the museum’s inaugural “Civil Rights Series,” which is meant to “highlight some of America’s most consequential stories from the people who were there.”
The discussions will take place at Harrison Auditorium at NC A&T at 1009 Bluford St. in Greensboro each Wednesday at 6 p.m.
The tickets are $50 for each event.
Here’s the schedule:
On Wednesday, Feb. 1, Al Sharpton – a civil rights activist, political activist, minister and media figure – will speak on his book, “Righteous Troublemakers: Untold Stories Of The Social Justice Movement In America.”
On Wednesday, Feb. 8 – Andrew Young, the former congressman and former mayor of Atlanta, will speak on a book that is yet to be named.
On the following Wednesday, Feb. 15, anthropologist, and educator Johnnetta Cole will host a discussion on “Racism In American Public Life: A Call To Action.”
Closing out Black History Month, on Wednesday, Feb. 28, professor, minister and civil rights activist James Lawson will discuss “Revolutionary Nonviolence.”
Tickets to all four sessions may be purchased at www.sitinmovement.org/civil-rights-series.