LYNCHBURG, Va. – Kwanzaa is going on right now. It’s a non-religious holiday from Dec. 26 to Jan. 1 dedicated to celebrating African American culture.
During the seven days of Kwanzaa, families and communities host activities surrounding seven principles: unity, self-determination, collective work and responsibility, cooperative economics, purpose, creativity and faith.
The Legacy Museum of African American History in Lynchburg recorded a socially distanced Kwanzaa celebration for people to watch online during Kwanzaa. It is on the city’s YouTube page, here.
Sheron White, director and owner of Kuumba Dance Ensemble, was part of the festivities and so were her dancers. She said the online celebration is a reminder of how technology can make sure major aspects of Kwanzaa like connecting with family, those who have gone on and those who remain, don’t get lost because of the pandemic.
“Celebrate with your family. That’s why the push is for Kwanzaa and that’s why I’m doing it this year especially because I can pull my family from all over the world in on a Zoom presentation and say ‘Hey you guys, how are you doing?’” said White.
Celebrations typically include music, dance, storytelling, poetry, creating handmade gifts and feasts.
The pandemic does limit families coming together but it doesn’t stop wisdom being passed down to new generations, a main purpose behind Kwanzaa.
“My mom is 95 so she’ll be telling us stories on Zoom that her great great grandchildren will hear and me too for that matter. I’m sure she has stories I haven’t heard yet, but that’s the impetus of Kwanzaa,” said White.
For more information on Kwanzaa, click here.