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The FAC celebrates Black History Month

Events include Gospel Fest, Heritage Tea

Posted: February 23, 2017 5:55 p.m.
Updated: February 24, 2017 1:00 a.m.

Abundant Life Fellowship Church

The Multi-Cultural Committee of the Fine Arts Center of Kershaw County (FAC) announces plans for the Gospel Fest and Heritage Tea -- annual events celebrating Black History Month. Both the Gospel Fest and the Heritage Tea are dedicated to the memory of Fred Sheheen. The Gospel Fest will take place Saturday at 6 p.m. All tickets are $5. The annual Heritage Tea Celebration will be held Sunday at 3 p.m. Both events will be held in the Wood Auditorium. Following the Heritage Tea program, a reception will be held at the Douglas-Reed House where the student artwork is displayed. The Heritage Tea is free and open to the public.

The FAC’s Multi-Cultural Committee puts together these special annual programs that celebrate the spirit of community, with a special emphasis on Black History Month. Committee members include: Kristin Cobb, Kevin Little, Chandra Richardson, Bill Rozier, Pamela Whitehead, Timothy Hopkins, Mollye Robinson, Dionne T. Hough, Denise Goodwin Blanding, Mary Jones, Ann Davis, Debra Edwards, Kimberly Little, Elizabeth Robinson, Ella Hood, Claude Eichelberger, Bobbie Daniels, Ernest Witherspoon, Cassandra Mickle, Elena S. Gaston, Keith Tolen, Lola Houston, Mary Ellen Jordan, Linda Shaylor, Connie Rouse, and Rose Sheheen.  Sponsorship of this weekend's celebration is provided by the Piggly Wiggly of Camden. 

* About Gospel Fest

In its 12th year, The Gospel Fest will celebrate “community unity” with the singing of several local gospel choirs. The emcee for the Gospel Fest will be Chandra Richardson, a multi-cultural committee member, and teacher at Leslie M. Stover Middle School. The invocation will be given by Elder Sam Dennis from Abundant Life Fellowship Church and the choirs will sing various genres of gospel music representing many styles. At the end of the evening, the audience will be encouraged to participate in the singing of “We Shall Overcome” along with the choirs. Scheduled to appear this year are:

* Abundant Life Fellowship Church-Sam Dennis, director

* Bethel Worship Center-Brian Wieneke, director

* Camden First UMC-Tim Walters, director

* Catoe's Chapel COGIC-James Caldwell, director

* Christian Musicians’ Guild-Dionne Hough, director

* International Praise Church of God-Tyrus Goodwin, director

* The Valentinos-Elijah Bradford, manager

* About the Heritage Tea and performances

For more than 20 years, the Fine Arts Center’s Multi-Cultural Committee has hosted an annual Heritage Tea to celebrate diversity and showcase the myriad talents of local residents and county youth. In addition to performances on stage, prizes and awards will also be presented to students whose art projects are on display in the Douglas-Reed House. 

This year’s emcee for the Heritage Tea is Dr. Alisa Taylor, Executive Director for Instructional Support, Kershaw County School District. The invocation will be given by Rev. Dionne Hough, Associate Pastor of Sweet Home Baptist Church, and chairperson of the Multi-Cultural Committee. Special entertainment will be provided by Wateree Elementary Cardinal Chorus, directed by Meagan Shaw; and the Call to Praise (CTP) Dancers, directed by Anne Pitts, Dominique Greene, and Zaria Jiles. Other participants include Dr. Connie Long Graham, Assistant Superintendent, Kershaw County School District; Claude Eichelberger, Co-Chair of the Multi-Cultural Committee; Dr. Frank Morgan, Superintendent, Kershaw County School District; Tim Hopkins, Executive Director for K-12 Instruction, Kershaw County School District; Kristin Cobb, Executive Director of the Fine Arts Center of Kershaw County; and Connie Davis-Rouse, member of the Multi-Cultural Committee. 

* About the student work on display

Much of what we think of as American art has been introduced or influenced by African American artists through musical genres such as blues, jazz, ragtime, rock and roll, and gospel music. The influence of African American artists is also evident when you think of the popular dances, poetry, and literary contributions of writers such as Langston Hughes, Maya Angelou, and Rita Dove. The names of these distinguished Americans are synonymous not just with great African-American historical contributions, but also with American and worldly contributions to the arts. When students research and write about African American artists like these, the skills learned help reinforce South Carolina Academic Standards that will benefit them throughout their school careers by integrating social studies, language arts, science, music, technology, and the visual arts. 

For much of the last month, students in Kershaw County's grades three through eight have worked on projects that focus on Africans or African Americans, past or present, who have made an impact on culture and history. Each school has selected the winning pieces to be displayed in the historic Douglas-Reed House at the Fine Arts Center during this special weekend.

Awards for first through third place in grades 3-8 will be awarded. Past projects have ranged from reports with paintings to portfolios, mobiles, hand sculptures, and PowerPoint presentations. All Kershaw County schools were invited to be a part of this celebration. 

For more information or to purchase tickets call 803-425-7676, extension 300 or visit the FAC website at  The Fine Arts Center of Kershaw County is at 810 Lyttleton Street in Camden. Office hours are Monday through Wednesday and Friday, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. and Thursday 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.

The Fine Arts Center is funded in part by the Frederick S. Upton Foundation and the South Carolina Arts Commission, which receives support from the National Endowment for the Arts. Additional funding is provided by the City of Camden, Kershaw County, and BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina along with donations from businesses and individuals.



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