Tag Archives: Culture

Juneteenth 2020 in Seattle — A Guide to Local Events

by Emerald Staff


The Emerald rounded up local Juneteenth events so you and yours can easily find ways to participate both in person and virtually in celebrations, marches, live streams, talks, activities for children, and more!
Juneteenth flag (this version by Mike Tré), licensed by Creative Commons, Wikimedia Commons author: Saturnsorbit.

Juneteenth—Fri., June 19:

Juneteenth Blackout at the CHOP

“We’re blacking out CHOP … the viral death of black bodies was the catalyst for this current movement and we need to make sure we remain focused. This means both policy and systemic change to our systems and healing space for black people.

“So that’s exactly what we’re creating. A series of events in which we center black healing and community.

“What we need from our non-black allies are donations of money and supplies and the willingness to support by quietly protecting sacred space for black healing. We need allies on the outskirts who are willing to be a physical barrier of protection and to peacefully deter potential interruptions.” Read full schedule of events in Facebook event details.

Donations of supplies, funds, and volunteer bodies on the ground at the event are requested from the organizers. Read event details for more on this and donate funds here.

Time: 8 a.m.–8 p.m.
Where: CHOP — 1635 11th Ave (Cal Anderson Park)
Cost: Free to attend

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PHOTOS: Attendees share in Japanese culture during Bunka no Hi

By Carolyn Bick

Though she didn’t celebrate Bunka no Hi herself, when she lived in Japan, Arisa Nakamura now celebrates the modern holiday alongside the community and her fellow Japanese Cultural and Community Center staff and volunteers.

This year marked the organization’s 14th annual celebration of Bunka no Hi, which Nakamura said was originally a celebration of the Emperor Meiji’s birthday, changing in 1948 to commemorate the post-WWII Japanese constitution. While it’s still a national holiday in Japan, it’s now about celebrating and sharing Japanese culture and art, she said.

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PHOTOS: El Centro de la Raza holds 15th annual Día de Muertos celebration

By Carolyn Bick

Ignoring the chilly evening air nipping about them, hundreds of laughing people thronged through Roberto Maestas Plaza at El Centro de la Raza in Seattle, Washington, for the organization’s 15th annual Día de Muertos celebration on Nov. 1. Some wore extravagant, traditional Mexican outfits trimmed with lace, faces painted and decorated to look like bejeweled skulls. Others tucked up in puffy jackets eagerly waited in line for pan de muerto, or Mexican bread of the dead, and a steaming cup of hot chocolate.

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Black Pride Play Examines the Black Male Body

by Bri Little

NW Black Pride kicked off last night with Black D*ck Matters, written by Kathya Alexander (co-writer of Black to My Roots: African American Tales from Head and the Heart) and directed and produced by Tyrone Brown. The multimedia experimental experience premiered at Gay City in front of a full house, and much like Black Pride itself, the play was provocative. The piece both asks and answers a question aimed toward Black men: How does “it” feel? The answers, revealed throughout the play, unmask the tenderness of Black pain alongside Black pleasure.

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PHOTOS: The Celebratory and Somber Performances of Hai! Japantown

by Carolyn Bick

Under the warm, yellow lights of Kobo in the Chinatown-International District’s Japantown, Mako Willet readied her sanshin, an Okinawan instrument similar to a lute, to play another song, supposed to warn fishermen about stepping on sharp conch shells.

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Javoen Byrd Drums The Beat of His African Heritage

by George Collins

It’s hard to miss Javoen Byrd as he enters Empire Espresso on Edmunds Street in Columbia City. He sports a cream colored outfit with soft gold balls dangling from the collar, an Aso Yoruba. It’s an outfit I’ve seen him wear several times when tapping his hands on a set of drums in celebration of his African heritage.

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SIFF Presents Documentary on Prison Basketball Team at Ark Lodge

by Jacob Uitti

The new documentary, Q Ball, is the story of a group of incarcerated men hoping to find redemption through basketball. It screens as part of the Seattle International Film Festival at the Ark Lodge in Columbia City on Friday, May 17 at 6:30 p.m. and at the SIFF Uptown theater in Queen Anne May 18 at noon and May 21 at 3:30 p.m.

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That Brown Girl Cooks, Caters, and Now Owns

by Rosalind Brazel

The Liberty Bank Building is the first ever black-owned bank west of the Mississippi. It’s now the heart of South Seattle’s revitalization and a beacon for the community. It’s in this building that Kristi Brown will make her first run at owning a brick and mortar.

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Writer and Organizer Alex Gallo-Brown Grief, Healing, and Masculinity

by Reagan Jackson

Alex Gallo-Brown is a writer and labor organizer who grew up in Ravenna, but went to school in the Central District. He graduated from Garfield High School and went on to get a bachelor of fine arts in Creative Writing from the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn and a master of arts in English from Georgia State University in Atlanta.

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Columbia City and Hillman City Receive Official Arts & Cultural District Designation

by Jacob Uitti

In August, Columbia City and Hillman City received an historic honor: a prestigious Arts & Cultural District designation from Mayor Jenny Durkan. Now forever linked—and not just by Rainier Avenue—the two diverse, multicultural neighborhoods, which are comprised of about 13,000 people, can further showcase their dozens of art and music venues—from the Columbia City Theater to the Royal Room and the soon-to-be-opened Black and Tan Hall. To get a sense of what this new arts and culture designation means for the area exactly, the South Seattle Emerald reached out to Kathy Fowells, Director of SEEDArts, which was one of the many organizations responsible for getting the initiative to the Mayor’s office. Fowells discussed what the future holds for the neighborhoods, what an arts app might look for them and much more.

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