The 1997 communitywide Kwanzaa celebration once again will feature a visit by the creator of the African-American holiday, Maulana Karenga, chairman of the department of black studies at California State University at Long Beach.
Six days of the seven-day holiday, which starts Friday, will be celebrated at various centers in the African-American community. Kwanzaa is based on the Nguzo Saba, seven principles of community- and nation-building.
The seventh day of the holiday, Jan. 1, is called Imani, or faith, and people are encouraged to celebrate at home with their family and friends.
Karenga, who holds doctorates in political science and social ethics, will speak at 7 p.m. Monday, or Ujamaa (cooperative economics), in the C. H. McCoy Convention Center, 653 Clinton St., at Adam Street.
His lecture topic will be "The Practice and Promise of Kwanzaa: Bringing Good Into the World." A $5 donation for those older than 12 will be collected at the door. Karenga will sign books from 6 to 7 p.m.
A special children's Kwanzaa program will be held at noon Saturday, or Kujichagulia, in the Mason O. Damon Auditorium of the central branch of the Buffalo and Erie County Public Library at Lafayette Square.
All other programs are free and will begin at 7 p.m. Speakers and other activities scheduled are:
Umoja (unity), Friday, Langston Hughes Center, 25 High St. Joseph H. Wooley, one of the founders of the Sons of Kings Academy, an organization for black youth, will be the main speaker. African Dancers with Babba Eesah Drummers will preform.
Kujichagulia (self-determination), Saturday, African-American Cultural Center, 350 Masten Ave. Karima Amin, a storyteller who has worked with schoolchildren throughout the Buffalo area, will be the main speaker. Also, an African marketplace will be available. The Kakilambe Dancers and Drummers, based at the center, will preform.
Ujima (collective work and responsibility), Sunday, Hope Kensington United Methodist Church, 440 Leroy Ave., at Grider Street. Representatives from Our Market, a group trying to build a community-owned supermarket at Fillmore Avenue and East Ferry Street, will hold a panel discussion.
Ujamaa (cooperative economics), Monday, C. H. McCoy Convention Center. Karenga will be the featured speaker.
Nia (purpose), Tuesday, Pratt Willert Community Center, 422 Pratt St. Sister Vera Martin, co-owner of Harambe Books, will speak on "The African Woman's Role in Reuniting the African Family." An African marketplace will be available.
Kuumba (creativity), Wednesday, Moot Senior Citizen Center, 292 High St. A Karamu, or pot-luck feast, will be held. People are asked to share dishes that do not contain pork or red meat, and no alcoholic beverages are allowed. There will be an open forum for speakers in addition to ceremonies honoring elders.