By Collin Kelley, Editor

February is the designated month when we recognize the African American experience in America, and Atlanta has a host of upcoming events for adults and children. Here’s a look at some of them.

Fine Art + Fashion

Every July, Atlanta hosts the internationally acclaimed National Black Arts Festival, but before the main event the annual Fine Art + Fashion is held in the winter. This year it’s Thursday, Feb. 25, at AmericasMart in Downtown. The event offers a preview of couture fashions from top designers from around the world, as well as view a selection of fine art. Actress and author Victoria Rowell will host the evening. The event supports NBAF’s education and family programs. To purchase tickets: (404) 372-4572 or www.nbaf.org.

Treasure Chest of Georgia Heroes

Imagine It! The Children’s Museum of Atlanta is marking Black History Month with a Treasure Chest of Georgia Heroes, where kids can learn about Georgia’s famous African-Americans in the arts, science, and sports. The Imaginators will bring to life wonderful stories celebrating black history and children will explore music from the swinging days of Auburn Avenue in Atlanta. www.childrensmuseumatlanta.org.

Atlanta History Center
The Atlanta History Center is hosting a number of special events as part of its ongoing From Civil War to Civil Rights exhibit, which continues until November. One of those events is Let Your Motto Be Resistance: African American Portraits featuring 69 stunning photographic portraits that trace 150 years of U.S. history through the lives of well-known African Americans, including abolitionists, artists, scientists, authors, statesmen, entertainers, and sports figures. Frederick Douglass, Malcom X, Edward Bannister, Toni Morrison and Jimi Hendrix are included. For more Black History Month events at AHS, visit www.atantahistorycenter.org.

Black History Month Parade

Set for Saturday, Feb. 27, in Downtown, this inaugural event will celebrate the culture, history heritage and accomplishments of the African-American community, including performances, speeches and food. The event was still being organized at press time. For more, visit www.sweetauburn.com/bhmp.

Spelman College

Regina Taylor’s musical adaptation of the book Crowns: Portraits of Black Women in Church Hats will be staged Feb. 18-21 at? Baldwin Burroughs Theatre.?Directed by Jade Lambert-Smith?, the musical presents an oral history of ?African-American women affectionately known as “hat queens.” Crowns centers around a street-smart New York teenager, who is sent down south to her grandmother’s home to discover her roots. ?She learns that since the days of slavery and beyond, hats, for black women, have been their crowning glory, especially at church on Sunday. www.spelman.edu.

True Colors Theatre Company

Kenny Leon directs a multi-cultural version of Thornton Wilder’s classic, Our Town, Feb. 25-March 21 at the Southwest Arts Center. This reinvention puts a new spin on the story  on the inhabitants of Grover’s Corners, New Hampshire – a small, out-of-the-way town whose citizens mirror the timeless concerns of all humankind. www.truecolorstheatre.org.

Online Resources

The Center for Civil and Human Rights is expected to open in 2012, bringing a world-class museum and education/research facility to Downtown. You can follow the progress of the center at www.cchrpartnership.org.

The Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau (ACVB) has launched a Civil Rights site on Atlanta.net that showcases the city’s civil rights history and legacy. The Civil Rights site feature an interactive timeline that spans 147 years of Atlanta’s African American history. The history begins in 1862 when Atlanta’s first African-American property owner sold her lot to purchase her husband’s freedom and continues through 2008 when filmmaker and movie mogul Tyler Perry opened his studio in Atlanta on more than 30 acres, becoming the first African-American owned film studio in the nation. The site also highlights venues, museums, tours and cultural activities.


Collin Kelley

Collin Kelley has been the editor of Atlanta Intown for two decades and has been a journalist and freelance writer for 35 years. He’s also an award-winning poet and novelist.