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20+ Inspiring Black History Month Celebrations in Los Angeles

Updated for 2023

February is recognized as Black History Month, and here in Los Angeles, there are many ways to celebrate the accomplishments of African-Americans in the United States.

Celebrating the heritage and achievements of Black Americans is something that doesn’t need to be limited to just one month, especially here in Los Angeles. This year, some events are happening online and some are in person.

The Aquarium of the Pacific is one of the fun places in Los Angeles to celebrate African American History Month. #losangeles #laevents #Africanamericanhistory
photo courtesy of the Aquarium of the Pacific

20+ Ways to Celebrate Black History Month

Celebrate African American History Month – LAPL Online

The Los Angeles Public Library system has a large number of resources available online to commemorate and celebrate African American History Month. You’ll find books (both fiction and nonfiction), photos, podcasts, and more. Also, be sure to check the website for more information (as it becomes available) about events happening at different branches. 

California African American Museum (CAAM)
Exposition Park
600 State Dr., Los Angeles, CA 90037

The California African American Museum, located within Exposition Park, is “the first African American museum of art, history, and culture fully supported by a state.” The Museum’s permanent collection consists of 5,000 items including “landscape painting and portraiture, modern and contemporary art, historical objects and print materials, and mixed-media artworks.” The Museum hosts a number of special events and programs throughout the year, including many family-friendly programs.  

Black Resource Center
A. C. Bilbrew Library 
150 E. El Segundo Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90061

The Black Resource Center (BRC) is a special service of the LA County Library System. It’s mission is to support “research and study on social, historical and cultural aspects unique to the African American experience.” The BRC offers special programs, community outreach, in-depth reference service to researchers, and more. In addition, the LA County Library System hosts special activities to celebrate Black History Month. Check the website for more information (as it becomes available) regarding related activities and events. 

Afro-Atlantic Histories
Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA)
5905 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90036

Afro-Atlantic Histories charts the transatlantic slave trade and its legacies in the African diaspora.” The exhibition features work produced in Africa, Europe, and the Americas within the last four centuries. The exhibition is “organized around six groupings: Maps and Margins, Enslavements and Emancipations, Everyday Lives, Rites and Rhythms, Portraits, and Resistances and Activism.” The exhibition will be at LACMA until September 10th, 2023. Ticket information is available online. 

Annual Pan African Film & Arts Festival
Multiple Locations including
Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza
3650 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90008

The Annual Pan African Film & Arts Festival is scheduled for February 9th through February 20th. The PAFF was established in 1992 and is “dedicated to racial tolerance through the exhibition of film, art and creative expression.” The Festival, which is “the largest Black film and arts festival in the United States” features artists, craftspeople, and filmmakers from over 40 countries and six continents. All the details, including ticket information, are available online.  

21st Annual African-American Festival
Aquarium of the Pacific
100 Aquarium Way, Long Beach, CA 90802

The Aquarium of the Pacific will host its Annual African-American Festival on Saturday, February 25th and Sunday, February 26th from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm each day. The festivities will feature “music, dance, storytelling, historical displays, and the Aquarium’s Heritage Award ceremony.” The Festival is included in general Aquarium admission. Tickets are available online. 

The Museum of African American Art
Macy’s 3rd Floor – Baldwin Hills Crenshaw
4005 Crenshaw Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90008

Many Los Angeles residents may not even realize the Museum of African American Art exists. Currently, the Museum is getting ready for its newest exhibition — From the HeArt, A solo exhibition by “Aiseborn” which opens on January 28th, 2023.Families can also access some information about the Museum’s exhibitions online. The main gallery of the Museum is open by appointment only. You may schedule your visit online. Admission is free.  

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater – Virtual

The website for the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater is a true treasure trove of resources! You’ll find videos you can access of past performances. And while you’re on the website, the Dance Company asks you to consider making a donation to help support “Alvin Ailey’s mission to deliver dance back to the people.”

National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC)

While it may not be possible to visit the National Museum of African American History and Culture right now, you can absolutely visit the Museum’s website. The Museum has a large number of digital resources available including information and tools on talking about race, online exhibitions, video archives, and much more. 

43rd Annual Orange County Black History Parade and Unity Festival
205 W. Center St. Promenade, Anaheim, CA 92805

Mark your calendars. The 43rd Annual Orange County Black History Parade and Unity Festival is happening on Saturday, February 4th. This special event features music, vendors, arts, food, and much more. Morning Blessings begin at 9:00 am, the parade is scheduled for 10:00 am to 12:00 pm, and then the Unity Festival begins at 12:00 pm. Check the website for details and the parade route.

Marley: A Family Legacy
GRAMMY Museum
800 W. Olympic Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90015

Be sure to visit the GRAMMY Museum for their exhibition, Marley: A Family Legacy. “Even today, the message and music of Bob Marley continues to uplift people around the globe. The Marley story doesn’t end there. Inspired by their father, the sons and daughters of Bob Marley carry on his work in their own unique ways.” Exhibit highlights include instruments and costumes, as well as the chance for guests to participate in an interactive drum lesson. The exhibition is only at the Museum until February 6th, 2023. Tickets are available online. 

Black History Month Prosperity Market @ CAAM
California African American Museum
Exposition Park
600 State Dr., Los Angeles, CA 90037

A special Prosperity Market pop-up will be at the California African American Museum on Saturday, February 25th from 11:00 am to 3:30 pm. “Celebrate Black farmers, chefs, and entrepreneurs,” and enjoy fresh fruits and vegetables, handcrafted items, prepared foods, cooking demonstrations, a kids corner, and special wellness offerings, such as yoga and a sound bath. A schedule is available online. RSVP online for this free event. 

Black History Month Exhibits
Santa Monica City Hall
1685 Main St., Santa Monica, CA

From Wednesday, February 1st through Tuesday, February 28th, families are invited to observe special Black History Month exhibits at Santa Monica City Hall. All exhibits align with the theme of Black Resistance. City Hall is open Monday through Thursday 7:30 am to 5:30 pm, and on Fridays from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm (closed every other Friday – Feb. 10 and Feb. 24). 

Black History Month 2023
City of Santa Monica

The City of Santa Monica is celebrating Black History Month 2023 throughout February. This year’s theme is Black Resistance. The Kickoff Event takes place on Wednesday, February 1st and features food trucks, dancing, and more. Throughout the month other events are planned including Black History Month Book Displays at all Santa Monica Library locations, documentary screenings, and more. Check the website for more details as they become available. 

41st Annual Black History Parade and Festival
Parade Begins on N. Fair Oaks Ave., Festival at Robinson Park
1081 N. Fair Oaks Ave., Pasadena, CA 91103

The 41st Annual Black History Parade and Festival is happening on Saturday, February 18th. The parade is from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm. After the parade, the Black History Festival will continue until 4:00 pm. The Festival features food, live bands, guest speakers, community booths, and more. 

Black History Celebration 
Pretend City Children’s Museum
29 Hubble, Irvine, CA 92618

On Thursday, February 2nd Pretend City Children’s Museum invites families to its Black History Celebration. A variety of special activities are planned including art projects, story times, and more. All activities will “allow children to learn about Black historical figures who changed the United States for the better.” All activities are included in general museum admission. Ticket information is available online. 

2023 Los Angeles Black History Month Festival
Michelle and Barack Obama Sports Complex 
5001 Obama Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90016

The 2023 Los Angeles Black History Month Festival is scheduled for Sunday, February 19th from 11:00 am to 6:00 pm. This free community event will “highlight Health and Wellness as well as focus on Literature.” The Festival features guest speakers, a marketplace, performing artists, book fair, workshops, and more. Register online for this free event. 

Olivia Jones Comes Alive: A Book Release Celebration
Skirball Cultural Center
2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90049

Families are invited to the Skirball Cultural Center on Sunday, February 5th at 1:00 pm for a staged reading of Olivia Jones. “Author and advocate Phillip Brown’s new literary work tells the story of a girl raised in the Deep South who seeks to right the wrongs of her father and repair her nation’s past.” This historical fiction piece will be “brought to life under the direction of acclaimed spoken word artist Rain Wilson as she weaves the story together with actors, dancers, and live music.” A Q&A session and book signing will follow the performance. Tickets are available online.  

African American Firefighter Museum
1401 S. Central Ave., Los Angeles, CA

The African American Firefighter Museum (AAFFM) opened in 1997. It is recognized as the “only free standing African American Firefighter Museum in the United States.” Families will view vintage fire apparatus, photos, artifacts, and much more. The Museum is open only on Sundays from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm. You can also visit their website for a virtual tour of the Museum. 

African American and Black History Month – Online 

The Los Angeles County Library System has a large number of resources available online to commemorate and celebrate African American and Black History Month. You’ll find books (both fiction and nonfiction), music, YouTube videos, and more. Also, be sure to check the website for more information (as it becomes available) about events happening at different branches.

2023 Black History Month 10th Children’s Art Festival
Monrovia Community Center
119 W. Palm Ave., Monrovia, CA 91016

The 2023 Black History Month 10th Children’s Art Festival is happening on Thursday, February 23rd from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm. “Come out to see the beautiful Black History themed artwork created by our amazing elementary students.” Register online for this free event. 

NMAAHC Kids Learning Together: Black Character Celebration – Virtual Event

The National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) is hosting several special Black History Month Virtual Events in February, each highlighting a different Black Character from well-known children’s shows and movies. On Saturday, February 4th, the event celebrates Antonio from the Disney film Encanto. Children will have the opportunity meet a Black veterinarian. On Friday, February 10th, children will meet a Black ice skater during this special program inspired by The Incredibles’ Frozone. On Monday, February 13th, inspired by Princess Tiana from The Princess and the Frog, children will meet a Black chef. And on Tuesday, February 21st, children will celebrate Disney’s Doc McStuffins and get to know a Black doctor. Registration information is available online. 

Black History Month Celebration 
The Museum of the San Fernando Valley
18904 Nordhoff St., Northridge, CA 91324

The Pacoima Historical Society, in collaboration with The Museum of the San Fernando Valley, present a Black History Month Celebration on Sunday, February 19th from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm. This free event features art, music, entertainment, speakers, vendors, food, and more. RSVP online. 

Regeneration Summit: A Celebration of Black Cinema
Academy Museum of Motion Pictures
6067 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90036

The Academy Museum of Motion Pictures is hosting Regeneration Summit: A Celebration of Black Cinema on Friday, February 3rd through Sunday, February 5th. This special weekend-long festival celebrates the exhibition Regeneration: Black Cinema 1898-1971. Special events include live entertainment, workshops, film screenings, and more. Sunday, February 5th will be Free Family Fun Day, as part of SoCal Museum’s Annual Free for All Day. Details and ticket information are available online. 

African Folktales with Michael D. McCarty
Pretend City Children’s Museum
29 Hubble, Irvine, CA 92618

Visit Pretend City Children’s Museum on Saturday, February 11th for African Folktales with Michael D. McCarty. “Michael will be weaving folktales from various parts of Africa as well as African-American tales. He also engages in call and response during his stories.” Story time is schedule for 10:30 am and 11:30 am. Details and ticket information are available online. 

Black History Month
Hall of Liberty 
Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills
6300 Forest Lawn Dr., Los Angeles, CA 90068

Forest Lawn is hosting a Black History Month event on Saturday, February 25th from 4:00 pm to 7:30 pm. This free, family-friendly event features a community resource fair as well as music, dance, and poetry performances, special guests, and more. Light refreshments will be served. 

Wendy Kennar is a mother, writer, and former teacher who has lived her entire life in the same Los Angeles zip code. You can read more from Wendy at her website WendyKennar.com where she writes about books, boys, and bodies (living with an invisible disability).

MomsLA is your source for Things to do with Kids in Los Angeles.

Disclaimer: MomsLA has made every effort to confirm the information in this article; however, things can often change. Therefore, MomsLA makes no representations or warranties about the accuracy of the information published here. MomsLA strongly urges you to confirm any event details, like date, time, location, and admission, with the third party hosting the event. You assume the sole risk of relying on any of the information in our list. MomsLA is in no way responsible for any injuries or damages you sustain while attending any third-party event posted on our website. Please read our Terms of Use which you have agreed to based on your continued use of this website. Some events have paid to be listed on MomsLA.

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