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Celebrate Kwanzaa in Durham

Durham, NC is one of the best places to celebrate Kwanzaa this holiday season.

Posted By Heather Darnell on Dec 27, 2017

With Durham’s rich African American heritage and history, it’s no surprise that there are several community-wide Kwanzaa events to attend during this seven-day holiday. Check out these Kwanzaa end-of-year events in Durham, NC for things to do:

"Kwanzaa focuses on family, community, and culture and celebrates African American heritage with seven core principles, or Nguzu Saba. The principles include unity, self-determination, collective work and responsibility, cooperative economics, purpose, creativity, and faith."

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Kwanzaafest: Continuing the Legacy

Get ready to move your feet to the sound of African drumming! On January 1, 2018, the African American Dance Ensemble will present, Kwanzaafest: Continuing the Legacy at Walltown Recreation Center. This year’s 32nd Kwanzaafest celebration is dedicated to Charles “Baba Chuck” Davis, the world-renowned dance icon and founder of Durham’s African American Dance Ensemble, who passed away in May 2017. Baba Chuck organized Durham’s first Kwanzaafest in 1985, and the celebration has taken place each year since. Baba Chuck’s birthday was January 1, and he loved to celebrate both Kwanzaa and his birthday with the community each year. At this year’s celebration, the entire Durham community will feel the loss of his presence, but Kwanzaafest will continue in tribute to his memory.

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Kwanzaafest is a free New Year’s Day party with a community-focused emphasis. Doors open at 11 a.m. Donated canned food will be given to a local nonprofit. There will be a credit repair and home-buying seminar from 11 a.m. to noon and seats are limited. Reserve your seat today. Children will enjoy the Children’s Village, which will have games, arts and crafts, music, and face painting from 11:30 a.m. to 1:45 p.m. Health screenings will be also available. Performances begin at 2 p.m. and several dance and entertainment groups, including the African American Dance Ensemble will perform. Don’t miss this year’s Kwanzaafest- it’s sure to be an event that will long be remembered.

Hayti Legacy Kwanzaa

You’ll be saying “Joyous Kwanzaa!” all week long! The Hayti Heritage Center will celebrate Kwanzaa December 26, 2017 through January 1, 2018 from 1 to 9 p.m. each day. There will be a kickoff event, Hayti Legacy Kwanzaa, on December 26, and the theme is “Leadership Through Service,” also in remembrance of Baba Chuck Davis. There will be family-friendly performances, workshops, films, and vendors. There is a suggested donation of $3 for adults and $1 for children and seniors, and the daily events are open to all.

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Kwanzaa Celebration

Do you need purpose in your life? Check out the Kwanzaa Celebration, hosted by Durham Parks and Recreation on December 30, 2017 from 3 to 5 p.m. at the Holton Career & Resource Center. Held on the fifth day of Kwanzaa, this free family-friendly event will celebrate the principle of Nia (purpose), and feature entertainment by local and regional artists.

Kwanzaa is a wonderful holiday celebrating community and diversity. Make plans to attend one or all of these fantastic Durham, NC Kwanzaa events.

About the Author

Heather Darnell