Press ReleaseICPL celebrates Black History Month

The Iowa City Public Library is celebrating Black History Month by recognizing the important contributions and achievements of African Americans throughout our nation's history.
We will offer a variety of programs, events, and displays for children, teens, adults, and families.

Wednesday, Feb. 2, 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. in Meeting Room A: Afro-Cuban Dance Workshop for Kids and Families With Modei Akyea

Come to the Library for a special Afro-Cuban dance workshop with Modei Akyea! While learning the dances, you will also gain knowledge on the background and history of the movements.


Saturday, Feb. 5, 2 to 4 p.m. in the Storytime Room:Black History Calendar Creation Studio
All ages are invited to drop in and create a Black history wall calendar that will help you celebrate and honor Black excellence all year long!

Monday, Feb. 7, 4 to 6 p.m. in the Koza Family Teen Center: Teen Art Drop-In, DIY Name Garlands
Every Monday, the Teen Space is open for art of all types. On February 7, we're highlighting Black History heroes. You're also welcome to make your own personalized garland. Feel free to create with us or bring an art project you're working on. We'll have supplies on hand. All artistic voices are welcome, and no experience or registration is necessary.

Tuesday, Feb. 15, 7 to 8:30 p.m. on Zoom: B.Y.O.Book--Jason Mott's "Hell of a Book"

Join us to read and discuss "Hell of a Book: Or the altogether factual, Wholly Bona Fide story of a big dreams, hard luck, American-Made Mad Kid" by Jason Mott. This book made all of the lists, and with good reason. Publisher's Weekly says:

"Mott's stunning fourth novel (after The Crossing) delves into the complex and fraught African American experience."

Wednesday, Feb. 16, 4 to 5 p.m. in the Storytime Room: The African American Museum of Iowa: Superheroes of Science (Pre-K-2nd Grade)

Jenny from the African American Museum of Iowa in Cedar Rapids will visit the Library for an afterschool program for kids in preschool through second grade. Learn about four African American scientists who made life better for everyone, and then create a hero’s cape that shows your superpower.

Thursday, Feb. 17,10:30 to 11:30 a.m. in the Storytime Room or online: Preschool Stories & More: Black History Month Storytime and Short Film Fest

Learn about Black culture and history with books that celebrate key African American figures. We will celebrate the significant impact Black musicians have played on music! Stick around after storytime for some animated picture books shorts as well!

Wednesday, Feb. 23, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. in Meeting Room A: Black History Month screening of documentary "My Name Is Pauli Murray"

Born in Baltimore in 1910, and raised by their grandparents in Durham, NC, Anna Pauline "Pauli" Murray was an American civil rights activist who was a lawyer, women's rights activist, Episcopal priest, and author. In 1940 Murray and a friend were arrested for violating state segregation laws by sitting in the white-only section of a Virginia bus - 15 years before Rosa Parks. This incident led Murray to the study of law, specifically civil rights law. Later in life, in 1977, she became an ordained Episcopal priest, the first African-American woman to be ordained as an Episcopal priest.

For more information, call the Library at 319-356-5200 or visit:


The Iowa City Public Library is a center of community life that connects people of all ages with information, engages them with the world of ideas and with each other, and enriches the community by supporting learning, promoting literacy, and encouraging creativity.

Black History Month Poster