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Happy Kwanzaa!

    Kwanzaa (or Kwaanza), which acknowledges, honors and salutes African-American heritage, is observed Dec. 26 to Jan. 1. First observed Dec. 26, 1966 to Jan. 1, 1967, it's founder, Ron Karenga, has described it as the African-American branch of "first fruits" celebrations with classical African cultural roots.

    For 30-plus years, Memphis-area observances were spearheaded by the late Adjua Naantaanbuu, who encouraged celebrants to live out the Nguzo Saba (Seven Principles of Kwanzaa) every day.

    Today – Dec. 27 – is day two of the seven-day celebration. The focus is on KUJICHAGULIA (Self-Determination), with the following events scheduled.

    Memphis Kwanzaa International, Inc.

    Dr. Kaia Naantaanbuu, President

    5 p.m.-7:30 p.m., Dr. Benjamin L. Hooks Library, 3030 Poplar Ave.,

    Keynote speaker: "Queen" Shukriyyah Darboe. (Staff, Snowden School)

    Mid-South Kwanzaa, Inc.

    Ayanna Ruby Payne, President

    5 p.m., The Rhythm of Kwanzaa –Victory University, auditorium, 255 N. Highland St.; Donation: $5.

    Sponsored by Blues City Cultural Center (Levi and Debra Frazier).

    7 p.m., Matthew R. David Resource Center, 1036 Firestone.

    Sponsored by LeQuita & Willie Eva Sims

    (A celebration sponsored by Adimu and Pearl Ali was held this morning at the Lewis Center for Senior Citizens, 1188 N. Parkway.)

    Here are the schedules for the remainder of Kwanzaa:

    Memphis Kwanzaa International, Inc.

    Dr. Kaia Naantaanbuu, President

    DAY 3:

    UJIMA (Collective Work & Responsibility)

    Friday, Dec. 28

    6 p.m.-until, Memphis Kwanzaa Center, 1549 Elvis Presley Blvd.,

    Keynote speaker: Dr. Noel G. L. Hutchinson Jr.. pastor of First Baptist Lauderdale and host of the TV show "BLACK Thought."

    DAY 4:

    UJAMAA (Cooperative Economics)

    Saturday, Dec. 29

    6 p.m.-until, Memphis Kwanzaa Center, 1549 Elvis Presley Blvd.,

    Community speakers will commemorate, honor and install "Queen" Adjua Naantaanbuu, founder of Memphis Kwanzaa International (founded 36 years ago), into Memphis: The Community of Legends.

    Tickets, $30, with a full dinner served.

    DAY 5:

    NIA (Purpose)

    Sunday, Dec. 30

    4 p.m.-7:30 p.m., The Dr. Martin Luther King Labor Center, 485 Beale St.

    Keynote speaker: Dr Jeffrey Ryan Futrell from North Side High School will talk on "What is our purpose: Guns and Gods in a World Gone Mad."

    DAY 6:

    KUUMBA (Creativity)

    Monday, Dec. 31

    9 a.m.- 3:30 p.m., West Tennessee State Penitentiary, 480 Green Chapel Rd., Henning, Tenn.

    Keynote speaker: Dr Eddie Yancey, University Of Memphis; topic: "Creating a Positive Self in a Negative World."

    DAY 7:

    IMANI (Faith)

    Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2013

    3 p.m.-5:30 p.m., Memphis Kwanzaa Center, 1549 Elvis Presley Blvd.

    Keynote speaker: World's Redeemer Pastor Jerry L. Ivery Sr., who will be the "King" for the day, will speak on this topic: "What Happened to the People of Faith?"

    NOTES:

    * For more information, call 901-239-1555 or 901-210-1218.

    * Most nights include free refreshment.

    * Memphis Kwanzaa International, Inc., kicked off its weeklong observation of Kwanzaa with a celebration at the Memphis Kwanzaa Center, at 1549 Elvis Presley Blvd., on Wednesday evening.

    With a focus on the idea that the "children will lead them," the keynote speakers were "King" Omari Baruti, 19, a junior at Morehouse College in Atlanta, and "Queen" Amina Naantaanbuu, 17, a freshman at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville.

    Mid-South Kwanzaa, Inc.

    Ayanna Ruby Payne, President

    DAY 3:

    UJIMA (Collective Work & Responsibility)

    Friday, Dec. 28

    10:30 a.m., Orange Mound Senior Service Center, 2590 Park Ave.

    Sponsored by Carolyn Crawford and Frances Barnes.

    5 p.m., Brown Missionary Baptist Church, 980 Stateline Road E..

    Sponsored by Dr. Bobbie Shaw.

    7 p.m., Exum Towers, 3155 Sharpe Ave.

    Sponsored by Reuben and Lula Barnes

    DAY 4:

    UJAMAA (Cooperative Economics)

    Saturday, Dec. 29

    2 p.m., Slavehaven, 826 N. 2nd St.

    Sponsored by Heritage Tours

    5 p.m., Economic Summit, The LeMoyne-Owen College, Student Lounge,

    807 Walker Ave.

    Sponsored by Ayodele Kofie.

    DAY 5:

    NIA (Purpose)

    Sunday, Dec. 30

    3 p.m., Kwanzaa Pageant Vendors Market; 4:30 p.m., Kwanzaa Pageant, Southwest Tennessee Community College auditorium, 737 Union Ave.

    Tickets: $5 in advance; $7, door.

    Sponsored by RBG Productions.

    7 p.m., Lester Community Center, 317 Tillman St.

    Sponsored by Osupa Williams, Frances Barnes and the Tillman-Binghampton CDC.

    DAY 6:

    KUUMBA (Creativity)

    Monday, Dec. 31

    7 p.m., Java, Juice, & Jazz Restaurant, 1423 Elvis Presley Blvd.

    Sponsored by Johari Brittenum

    DAY 7:

    IMANI (Faith)

    Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2013

    4 p.m., University of Memphis Panhellenic Bldg.

    Sponsored by the African and African American Studies Department and Shelby County Commissioner Henri Brooks.

    HONOREES

    Umoja (Unity): Reginald Porter; Kujichagulia (Self-Determination): Rev. Dr. Eric Boyland; Ujima (Collective Work & Responsibility): Joyce Parkinson; Ujamaa (Cooperative Economics): Dr. Carnita Atwater; Nia (Purpose): Dr. Jeffery Ryan Futrell; Kuumba (Creativity): Dr. Helen Harper; Imani (Faith): Pastor Clarence Kelby Heath; Family of the Year: Elliott and Tracey Barnes & Family.

    NOTES:

    * Mid-South Kwanzaa, Inc., ushered in its 2012-13 Kwanzaa observances with two celebratons on Wednesday.

    At 2 p.m., celebrants gathered at the Memphis Board of Education Auditorium on Avery for an observance sponsored by Memphis City Schools and the Orange Mound Progressive Women, Firm Believers in Christ Worship Center – Dr. Eric & Cynthia Boyland.

    That evening at 7 p.m., an observance was held at Unity Christian Church, 3345 McCorkle Rd., where it was sponsored by the Rev. Eric Donaldson.

    Read more http://www.tsdmemphis.com/index.php/greater-metro/9635-happy-kwanzaa

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