Nov. 19, 2004
Art, music, dance, storytelling, food, a fashion show, health screenings and a candle-lighting ceremony will highlight the upcoming Kwanzaa Festival in the Cooper Student Center at the Harrisburg Campus of HACC, Central Pennsylvania's Community College. The festival Dec. 4, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., is open to the community and admission is free.

Festivities will begin with a candle-lighting ceremony at 10 a.m. and the presentation of the fifth annual Harambee Recognition Awards, led by HACC students and Harrisburg's Black Achievers. The Black Achievers Gospel Choir will perform during the ceremony. Special guest Valerie Pritchett, weekend news anchor for WHTM 27, will be master of ceremonies.

The Harambee Recognition Awards will be presented to seven members of the community who have demonstrated one of Kwanzaa's principles through service. This year's recipients are:

  • Umoja (unity) - The Neighborhood Center
  • Kujichagulia (self-determination) - Richard Soto
  • Ujima (collective work and responsibility) - Reclaim the Streets Ministries
  • Ujama (cooperative economics) - Larry Myers
  • Nia (purpose) - Keirstan Nicole Harris and Rev. Olin Harris
  • Kuumba (creativity) - Diane Hetes
  • Imani (faith) - Rev. Jimmy Allen Thomas

The Overall Service Achievement award will be announced the day of the festival.

Entertainment and the African American Arts Festival will begin at noon. Entertainers include Jazz with Jimmy Wood and Friends (Diane Wilson, Clyde Lucas, Tim Warfield, Ronald Waters, and Robert Brookin); African Dance by the Imani Edu-tainers of Lancaster; SMS Rappers, 10 Men - African Drumming, Storytelling, & Stiltwalking; and the Southside Steppers from Crispus Attucks in York. DJ Brian Thompson will provide musical interludes from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

"This is a wonderful community event and an opportunity for us to share the seven principles of Kwanzaa," said Pat Thompson, chair of the Kwanzaa event. "It's ideal for families, as the activities can be enjoyed by adults and children alike."

A fashion show will be presented by ABW Productions of Harrisburg.

A Children's Corner will offer face painting by HACC art students, crafts with Linda Dale, an appearance of "Superreader," and storytelling by Shirl Myers.

Free health screenings will include blood pressure by HACC Nursing students, glaucoma by the Pennsylvania Association for the Blind, and cancer by the Central Pennsylvania Oncology Group.

Information may be obtained by calling Kwanzaa event chair Pat Thompson at HACC, 717-780-2632, or send an email to the address below.

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