Black History Parade to honor service personnel

Published 8:59 am Saturday, February 17, 2018

By Dawn Burleigh

The Orange Leader

Honoring the past while looking towards the future and lifting every voice in song inspires the NAACP Black History Parade.

This year’s parade is set for Saturday, February 24. Lineup for the event will begin at 12:30 p.m. with the parade beginning at 1 p.m. at St. James Church located at 1507 15th Street and concludes at Club DJ’s at 2200 Simmons Drive in Orange.

“We will have a short program with focuses on the youth,” NAACP President Demetrius Moffett said. “We have young adult participation and youth programs. There is also a festival.”

Organizers of the event are encouraging the public to participate by selecting a black historian past or present, create a mobile life story illuminating their legacy by decorating cars and/or floats.

The theme for this year’s parade is the Living Story. Masters of Ceremony will be the service men and women.

The NAACP, in 2000, launched a massive get-out-the-vote campaign. As a result, 1 million more African Americans cast their ballots in the 2000 presidential election than in 1996.

The NAACP’s initiatives for the 21st century can best be summarized by its six “Game Changers”: economic sustainability, education, health, public safety and criminal justice, voting rights and political representation, and expanding youth and young adult engagement, according to its official website.

In small towns and big cities alike, African Americans are hosting and attending black history programs. The verses of our long-revered anthem “lift every voice and sing” is being sung with lyrical understanding. These celebrations each February remind us of and implores us along the continuum of progress started generations ago, according to a press release rom the Orange Branch of NAACP.

This year, the top three decorative floats will receive a donation to the charity of their choosing.  First place – $200, second place – $100, third place – $75

Deborah Mitchell and Ella Barlow co chair the event.