Storyteller, Documentaries at Barnegat Library in February

Jan 29, 2018

The Barnegat branch of the Ocean County Library is holding special events in February to mark Black History Month.

Storyteller Michelle Washington Wilson will present “Stories Kept Alive in the Jersey Pines: A Celebration of African American Culture” on Friday, Feb. 2,  at 11 a.m.  She will tell folk tales such as “Abiyoyo” as well as the Haitian tale “How Rabbit Lost His Tail.” A storyteller for more than 30 years, Washington said the Pine Barrens is a place where many cultures have deposited stories and traditions while migrating through the farms.

The documentary “Off and Running” will be shown on Saturday, Feb. 10, at 11 a.m. It relates the story of Brooklyn teenager Avery, the adopted African-American child of a white same-sex female couple. Though it may not look typical, Avery’s household is like most American homes, until Avery writes to her birth mother and the response throws her into crisis.

Another documentary,Counter Histories,” will be featured Saturday, Feb. 17, at noon. On Jan 31, 1961, in Rock Hill, S.C., the men who would become known as the Friendship 9 walked across town and sat down at a lunch counter. They were beaten, dragged outside, threatened, and sentenced to 30 days of hard labor.  None of these men knew the effect their isolated act would have, on the country or their own lives. Their success propelled the Freedom Rides and eventually major U.S. civil rights legislation.

For more information, call the branch at 609-698-3331. —E.E.

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