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February 4, 2023

Cristo Rey Kansas City – 17th Annual Dancing with the Kansas City Stars

Cathy and Chip Toth are serving as the honorary chairs for Cristo Rey Kansas City’s 17th Annual Dancing with the Kansas City Stars, “A Red Carpet Extravaganza.” Susan Spencer, Christy Hartner, and Sarah Walsh are the event co-chairs. The festivities will be held at the Sheraton Kansas City Hotel at Crown Center on March 25th. […]

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Celebrating Black History with KC Melting Pot Theatre

KC Melting Pot Theatre strives to create a public sphere where the contributions of emerging and established Black playwrights can be shared in an enriching community environment. It works toward building diverse, equitable, and inclusive theater experiences that teach, critique, and model a better America; identifies, trains, and incubates theater talent from historically underserved communities; and […]

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Kansas City’s performing arts organizations have taken to heart the national push toward diversity and inclusion, and their commitment is reflected in this spring’s performances. Rarely have we seen such a variety of art and artists, genres and life-experiences, as in these programs.                     Playwrights Mashuq […]

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Celebrating Black History with Kansas City G.I.F.T. 

“What if 15,000 people each donated $10?” This question, fueled by Brandon Calloway’s vision for economic prosperity in the Black community, is the foundation of the innovative organization called G.I.F.T.—Generating Income for Tomorrow. The idea of leveraging collective financial resources to provide community impact is one that has garnered both positive attention and immense praise […]

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Celebrating Black History with Kansas City Friends of Alvin Ailey

KCFAA serves Kansas City in a three-part role: It educates by using dance to teach critical life skills to the neediest of Kansas City children, in a wide range of affordable educational programs and classes; it presents a range of performances including those by the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Ailey II, and the Ailey […]

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Celebrating Black History with Chioma Anyanwu

Chioma Anyanwu is a member of Actors Equity Association. She has parts in upcoming productions of the ripple, the wave that carried me home at Kansas City Repertory Theatre and Little Women at Kansas City Actors Theatre. Chioma is from Columbia, Missouri. She earned a bachelor of fine arts degree at Stephens College and a […]

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Celebrating Black History Month with Exceeds Expectations

Marilyn Chappell founded Exceeds Expectations in 2016. The organization provides seminars, workshops, and one-on-one coaching, all with the goal of ending generational poverty in the African American community. Exceeds Expectations presents financial literacy workshops within faith-based organizations, corporations, schools, and families. The organization offers financial leadership programs geared toward youth and adult financial stability programs. […]

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Palatable Pursuits – Fannie’s African & Tropical Cuisine

The country’s culinary scene is marked by fresh fish, rice, heavy spices, plantains, bananas, casava, yams, and hearty, eclectic soups and stews. Liberian cooks implement a “snout to tail” mentality when prepping in the kitchen and nothing goes to waste – from melon seeds to fish heads, chicken feet, and sweet potato greens, everything gets […]

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Cheers To Volunteers! – Concerned Mothers Group at High Aspirations

Members of the Concerned Mothers Group at High Aspirations have one monthly meeting, but they often accompany their sons to the Saturday morning meetings. They take attendance, set up and serve lunch, and oversee the cleaning of the tables, which is done by the students. In addition, they assist with planning special events and chaperoning […]

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Celebrating Black History with aSTEAM Village

William Wells founded aSTEAM Village in 2014. The organization strives to engage students and their families, as well as educators, in Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math. The goal is to ensure that young people learn the skills that will help them both in their academic lives and in their career paths. That, in turn, […]

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Celebrating Black History with Local Authors

Author Olivia Hill Author, Artist, Activist, and Playwright OliviaHillWrites.com @OliviaHillWrites Olivia Hill was born and raised in Kansas City. She is an author, artist, activist, and a playwright. Her memoir, Travel North Black Girl, is a story of self-discovery and empowerment. Set in the early 1980s, Olivia recounts her experiences of moving to the remote […]

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Celebrating Black History with Christian dos Santos, International Center for Music at Park University

Christian dos Santos is studying for a bachelor of music degree in viola performance with Professor Peter Chun at the International Center for Music at Park University. He will be featured in this month’s Park ICM Orchestra Valentine’s Concert. Christian grew up in Brazil. Thanks to a social project for children from low-income families, he […]

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Celebrating Black History with The Village KC 

Di’Anna Saffold founded The Village KC in 2020. The organization offers programs and activities for Black students in the fifth through the 12th grades. There are four main topics: the arts, holistic health and wellness, recreational activities, and bright futures, (which focuses on college, career, trade, and entrepreneurial tracks). The Village KC supports Black-owned businesses […]

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Rachel’s Reads – February 2023

“In recognizing the humanity of our fellow beings, we pay ourselves the highest tribute.” – Thurgood Marshall Black history is American history and thus should be something that we all understand, know, and discuss. Acknowledging and learning from the painful parts of our shared past should be something that we appreciate rather than trying to […]

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Celebrating Black History with Whitney Huell, Kansas City Ballet

Kansas City Ballet Company Member Whitney Huell will be performing later this month in Devon Carney’s Cinderella. She has been with the Ballet since 2014; she was the second Black female dancer to join the company. Whitney was five years old when she began ballet lessons in Columbia, South Carolina. She earned a bachelor of […]

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Celebrating Black History with the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum

John “Buck” O’Neil founded the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in 1990. It is the only museum dedicated to preserving and celebrating African-American baseball history and its impact on the social advancement of America. Originating in a one-room office in 1991, the NLBM expanded to a 10,000 square-foot space in the cultural complex known as the […]

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Art Scene – Dean Mitchell

Peaceful, quiet, contemplative, witnessing – all descriptors of Dean Mitchell’s art thoughtfully created in a variety of media. Whether this prolific, powerhouse artist is working in oil, watercolor, or acrylic, the message is the same… sit back, take a look, don’t be in such a rush, see for yourself exactly what this world is offering […]

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Celebrating Black History with The Independent’s Rising Stars

TRAILBLAZER: André Davis, Rising Star Class of 2019 André Davis has often contemplated his legacy. He said, “When we as Brown/Black people are being invited to the ‘table,’ how are we making space for others? I believe we all should consider operating from an ‘abundance’ and not a ‘scarcity’ mindset. It’s not just enough to […]

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Celebrating Black History with The Black Repertory Theatre of Kansas City 

The vision of The Black Repertory Theatre of Kansas City is a united community embracing stories of the African-American experience; its mission is to educate and inspire our community by presenting and promoting appreciation for Black culture through our stories.  Local Actor-director-entrepreneur Damron Russel Armstrong established the company during the 2016-2017 season with Dreamgirls in […]

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Celebrating Black History with The Nia Project

In 2022 Terri Barnes, president and founder of The Nia Project, set out to create for Kansas City, the first-of-its-kind publication: The Beloved Community – Your Black Nonprofit Resource Directory. “The directory is intended to serve as a guide to help community members find services, as well as help organizations become aware of other agencies […]

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Celebrating Black History with Black Archives of Mid-America in Kansas City

An archive requires a vast amount of material, often created by a large number of people during a period of years that may be counted in decades, centuries, or generations. What separates an archive from a hodge-podge of random files and miscellaneous items is often the vision and discipline of one person. In the case […]

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