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The Indiana Daily Student

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Bloomington to celebrate Black History Month

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This year, the city’s Black History Month theme is Black Innovation, which aims to celebrate the inventions and contributions of Black innovators throughout history. The month’s signature events include a market, essay contest and gala, but the month will be filled with many other events taking place at IU or around town.  

Black Market 

Black Market on Feb. 11 in City Hall, located on 401 N. Morton St., will run from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The event is an opportunity for black-owned businesses and black artists to sell goods in an affirming space.  

The market is an homage to the original Black Market, a brick-and-mortar store created in the fall of 1968 by Black IU student Clarence Turner to sell goods from Africa or made by African Americans. The shop was fire-bombed by a man with Ku Klux Klan ties in December of that year, and the city transformed the vacant lot into People’s Park.  

Essay Contest and Reception 

On Feb. 16, the Black History Month Commission will award high school, middle school and elementary school winners of an essay contest at Fairview Elementary with a reception beginning at 6 p.m. and the program beginning at 6:30 p.m. 

The essay follows this month’s theme, Black Innovation, and asks students to write about how Black innovators, creators and change agents contributed to society. The deadline for submissions is Feb. 6. 

Black History Month Gala 

The Black History Month Gala will cap off the month on Feb. 25 at the Woolery Mill, located at 2250 W. Sunstone Dr., with food, music and dancing. The gala will begin with a reception and silent auction at 6 p.m. with the program starting at 7 p.m. Tickets for the gala are $60 and can be purchased at the Buskirk-Chumley Box Office.  

There are several other events this month, including Neal-Marshall Night at the IU vs Michigan women’s basketball game on Feb. 16, Vinyl Friday on Feb. 17 and a Black Knowledge Bowl on Feb. 22. More events and details can be found on Bloomington’s Black History Month calendar.

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