Black History Month is a time to celebrate, learn and support the Black community. We need to do this every day, but February gives us the opportunity to see what the city has to offer to inspire and support black New Yorkers. So, if you’re looking for cool events and activities for the month, we’ve found 10 things to do during Black History Month in New York 2023.
20 things you can do (big and small) to support Black History Month
1. Attend a Broadway show
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From a reimagined big band-inspired adaptation I like it hot (From the hearts of Amber Ruffin and Matthew Lopez) to Tony Award-winning musicals, strange loopabout a queer black man forging his own identity, Broadway is currently having an incredibly funny black story.
There are also shows featuring black leads making history in their own right.Check out Emily Kwachu at phantom of the opera, she is the first black woman to play Christine (for reference, you can catch her on the show until April 16).Also starring Lilas White Hadestownthe first woman to play the role of Hermès.
2. Try a walking tour of Harlem
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On February 18th, we’ll follow in the footsteps of Webb DuBois, Martin Luther King, Jr., and other icons through Harlem’s historic buildings. The Big Onion hosts walking tours known as Historic Harlem: Celebrating Black History Months. Learn about the Harlem Renaissance and how the enclave of Upper Manhattan became the ‘Capital of Black America’. The walk he lasts two hours and stops at places like the Apollo Theater, Schomburg Center and Strivers Row.
3. Check out the shows at Apollo
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This landmark is known for many events from February onwards. need a laugh? On February 2nd, Apollo will host the classic Apollo Comedy Club, featuring comedians such as Jerelle Beamon, Nema Kat and Ricco da Great.
Speaking of classics, the theater’s signature series, Apollo’s Amateur Nights, returns on February 22 with new performers. Luther Vandross, Lauryn Hill, and HE HER are just one of the many legends who have made appearances on this famous talent show. Get your tickets now to see the next big star take to the stage.
253 W. 125 st, New York, NY, or www.apollotheater.org
4. Explore past and present artwork
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NYC Parks will be exhibiting at the Arsenal Gallery beginning February 2nd. “Heritage: Exploring the Past, Present and Future in Black Art” explores the Black experience through the lens of NYC Parks employees. Explore different art media, including vintage posters. So New York. The exhibit is completely free and open to the public, so head over to Central Park to check it out.
830 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY
5. Attend New York Public Library Events
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The New York Public Library offers a number of Black History Month activities. Join a virtual girlfriend discussion of “The Book of Martha”, a short story written by author Octavia Butler. Join us for a face-to-face talk about Marie Benedict’s The Personal Librarian and Terry McMillian’s It’s All Downhill From Here. In addition, several libraries across the five districts host film screenings. Check out movies like The Women King, One Night in Miami, and Muhammad Ali, to name a few. (Note: Check the NYPL website for first-hand discussions about movies and books showing at your local library.)
6. Support local black businesses
The city is bustling with black-owned businesses. Explore 5 districts for clothes, home décor and more. Not sure where to start? Luckily, February hosts several pop-up shops and markets in the city. On February 18th, New Women Space will be hosting his day in Brooklyn filled with trinkets, food and artisans. Plus, check out another curated market in the district in collaboration with City Point Bklyn. If you’re a creative or art lover, this event is sure to get you noticed at the end of the month.
7. Celebrate Kentanji Brown Jackson and Thurgood Marshall
Head to the King Manor Museum in Queens and learn about two historic Supreme Court justices. Kentanji Brown Jackson (first black woman to appear in court) and Thurgood Marshall (first black Supreme Court Justice). The event is free and open to the whole family. You can learn more about them and their historical titles, and let children build their own little gavel to take home.
150-03 Jamaica Ave., Queens, NY
8. Enjoy recordings of drunken black history
if you enjoy history of drunkenness, You will love this parody of the hilarious comedy series. Hosted by comedians Brandon Collins and Gordon Baker Vaughn, alcohol ignites unpredictable retellings of famous black figures in history. Hosts include Currys Hawkins, JD Williams and Elektra Telesford. Sit back and be ready to laugh all night long.
149 7th St., Brooklyn, NY
9. Enjoy the Black Future Festival
The Brooklyn Children’s Museum brings back its annual Black Future Festival. The all-day event celebrates and highlights the African Diaspora and the entire month. The whole family will enjoy hours of storytelling, workshops, performances and more. It will be held from February 19th to February 26th.
145 Brooklyn Ave., Brooklyn, NY or www.brooklynkids.org/
10. Grab a bite at a black-owned restaurant
What better way to celebrate Black History Month than to check out Black-owned restaurants? NYC has plenty of delicious food. To find the best, one of PureWow’s editors tested the Big Apple’s top 26 restaurants. Some favorites include Brown Butter, Loro’s Seafood Shack and Bunna Cafe.
26 black-owned New York restaurants you can order from tonight