Just because it’s the end of February doesn’t mean that the celebration of Blackness needs to end. Take matters into your own hands and create more awareness regarding our culture by starting a club or organizations. Another option, go out into the world and visit places in the city dedicated to helping you understand more about where “you” came from. At the very least, continue to celebrate Blackness by supporting Black businesses. Here are a few places in Chicago to add to your “must-visit” list.
eta Creative Arts Foundation / 7558 S. South Chicago Ave.
This foundation was created to preserve and promote the African American experiences. The main focus of the organization is storytelling with the use of visual and performing arts.
The Black Ensemble Theater / 4450 N. Clark St.
All my fellow actors and actresses, this one’s for you. Be wowed by the stories portrayed so beautifully by the Black community and lose yourself within its history. The theater was founded in 1976 by actress and playwright Jackie Taylor. You’re literally sitting in history.
MacArthur’s Restaurant / 5412 W. Madison St.
This restaurant consists of serving soul food cooked up with passed down recipes. Apparently, since the 1600s, their recipes are true and authentic from previous African American families. Also, the restaurant is owned by an African American family–MacArthur Alexander and his niece Sharon McKennie. While you’re there you just may spot a celebrity or two.
Batter & Berries / 2748 N. Lincoln Ave.
If you’ve never been to this hot spot, as a Chicago native, I feel sorry for you! In 2012, this restaurant made history as being one of the only black-owned businesses in Lincoln Park. Chef Derek Rylon and his wife are known as bubbly people who try to make their guests feel at home and make sure to greet customers personally.
What other ways can you think to celebrate your Blackness throughout the year? Send me a message and let me know.
By Kori Barnes, Sophomore, UNLV