Updated February 2022
February is Black History Month.
Growing up, this meant learning about various Black leaders, innovators, educators, lawmakers, writers, performers, artists, and athletes. And because I was raised by a teacher, it also meant an almost annual viewing of Eyes on the Prize. I love that there is a national emphasis on the historical and societal contributions of Black Americans every year. It is absolutely necessary. But I also feel like the celebration and appreciation of Black history and culture needs to extend beyond the confines of the shortest month of the year. Our society needs to fully embrace it as an integral part of our collective American story year-round.
In looking for various Black history events taking place this year, it’s encouraging and exciting to see just how many family-friendly opportunities there are to engage and experience Black culture here in Miami! The Miami-Dade Public Library System hosts quite a few programs and events for adults and children of all ages.
Additionally, there are many recurring and ongoing cultural events, festivals, and exhibits that take place throughout the year! Put them on your calendar and make plans to participate with your family. You’ll make wonderful memories and teach your children to embrace and steward the rich history and diversity of Miami’s Black community.
HistoryMiami is home to an excellent exhibit about the history of Miami’s Black community. Check it out on the 2nd floor of the North Building.
The Black Archives was founded in 1977 with the express purpose of preserving material reflecting the African-American experience in Miami-Dade County. You can check out their online database and book collection here.
The Black Police Precinct and Courthouse Museum houses memorabilia of the City of Miami’s first Black police officers. The museum is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10am-4pm and admission is $10/person.
The Lyric Theater, built in 1913, was a venue for a myriad of performers including Count Basie, Ella Fitzgerald, Cab Calloway, Josephine Baker, Nat King Cole, and Billie Holiday. Now fully restored, the historic theater hosts many events and local community programs.
The Historic Hampton House played a prominent role in our city’s history. Also a de facto headquarters during the civil rights movement, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. stayed there during his many visits to Miami. This local treasure has been recently restored and now serves as a venue for a variety of Black cultural events.
Weekly & Monthly Events
The Caribbean Marketplace in Little Haiti has reopened! Housed at the Little Haiti Cultural Complex, it’s a wonderful place to experience and enjoy Afro-Caribbean fashion, music, art, and cuisine. Click here to view the event calendar.
Free Gospel Sundays at the Adrienne Arsht is a wonderful concert series celebrating gospel music and highlighting Miami’s rich gospel scene.
Special Events & Annual Festivals
Black Is Black Ain’t is a special exhibition celebrating independent Black authors. The inaugural one-day event is taking place on February 19, 2022 at St. Thomas University in Miami Gardens.
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater returns to the Adrienne Arsht Center on February 25 & 26, 2022.
25th Annual Melton Mustafa Jazz Festival Weekend, February 25-27, 2022 at the Black Archives Historic Lyric Theater. This year’s lineup includes Grammy award-winning artists, internationally known instrumentalists, and several South Florida favorites. The festival will also feature the Florida Memorial University Jazz Band, the University of Miami Jazz Combo, and the New World School of the Arts Jazz Band directed by Jim Gasior.
Jazz in the Gardens will be taking place on March 12 & 13, 2022 at the Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens. Tickets are available through Ticketmaster.
Soul Basel is an annual celebration of Black art and culture that takes place during Miami Art Week. This year’s dates are TBA.
When my husband and I were dating, he gifted me with a copy of Black Miami in the Twentieth Century by Dr. Marvin Dunn. This book is a treasure and comes highly recommended to anyone wanting to understand the nuanced history of Black Miami.
We recently compiled a guide to some of our favorite local Black-owned restaurants! Check it out here.