By Vayunamu Bawa
The Logan Heights Library celebrated the extra day in February with a free, fun-filled Black History Month Celebration. On February 29, 2020, families and community members gathered to honor Black history and enjoy community.
President of Yesterday’s Negro League Baseball Players, Dennis Biddle, was the guest speaker for the event. Biddle brought with him Yesterday’s Negro League Baseball Players Traveling Exhibit of photos and stories to accompany his talk.
“There are fifty-six of us still living around the country; thirty-one of the fifty-six are 90 and more years old. I represent those players and promised those guys I would make sure that the true history is passed down,” Biddle said.
Biddle, the youngest living player, spoke about the part of the history that has been swept under the rug, such as the ‘Negro League’ name and likeness being adapted mainly for the sake of profit by various organizations who leave out an education of the origins.
2020 is the commemorative year of the Negro Baseball League, which started in 1920. Through the organization, Biddle travels around the country to speak and educate young people on the true history of the Negro Baseball League. Biddle was glad to visit San Diego, saving the best for last as this was the last stop in his Black History Month travels.
Spoken word entertainer Gregory Mcknight Jr. performed heartfelt spoken word about Black history and experiences. It was Parish Davis’ first time at the event and she came out to support her friend, Greg.
“The only part I was able to partake in was the drum session. It was the first time I heard of Chazz Ross and it was cool,” Davis said.
Chazz Ross led attendees of the event in an exciting, interactive drum circle and storytelling experience. The drum circle consisting of children, adults, and elders had strong, positive energy as they participated through improvisation and call-and-response.
Soul food and beverages were served and vendors had stands to sell their goods. Mayra Hernandez enjoyed the event as one of the vendors. Hernandez tabled for Arts + Culture: San Diego, a coalition of over 100 arts and culture organizations dedicated to strengthening the city’s diverse cultural ecosystem. This coalition works towards getting the Penny for the Arts plan realized to make funding possible for more arts and culture events such as this one.
Even though February is over, the honoring of Black History and achievements of the Black community does not need to be. In fact, there needs to be a stronger determination that every day should be an opportunity to not only reflect on our past and how far we have come, but the greatness in our future and where we are heading.