Black History Month in Petaluma

To mark Black History Month, the locally based Petaluma Blacks for Community Development (in coordination with the Petaluma Historical Library and Museum) is once again presenting an array of events throughout February.

Anchoring the series of concerts, lectures and storytelling activities is a captivating new exhibit that takes a look at the many black workers, families, artists and dreamers who left the south in the early 1900s, and found their way to Illinois, New York and California.

Most of the following events are free, and except where indicated, take place at the museum.



THE DORIAN MODE: Seventh annual Jazz Concert - Friday, Feb. 1. 7 p.m. (Doors open 6:30 p.m.). Beverages and treats included in ticket price. Downstairs seating $25 in advance, $30 at the door. Upstairs seating $35. Purchase tickets at or call 778-4398.

THE GREAT BLACK MIGRATION 1910 to 1970: Museum exhibit – Opens on Thursday, Feb. 7. Runs through the month of February.

Through vivid photographs and gripping stories, this new exhibition shows how the center of black social, economic, political and cultural life shifted from the rural south to the northern states and cities. Free to the public.

The museum is open Thursday-Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. 20 Fourth St.

CHILDREN’S STORY TIME – Saturday, Feb. 9, 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. Children welcome, but a parent must accompany all kids. Free. At the museum.

SHARON McGRIFF- PAYNE: Lecture – Sunday afternoon, Feb. 10, at 1 p.m. A storyteller and self-described “history sleuth,” McGriff-Payne is the author of “John Grider’s Century: African Americans in Solano, Napa and Sonoma Counties, 1845-1925. She’ll be telling the remarkable story of John Grider, a veteran of the Black Flag Revolt. Free. At the museum.

41st ANNUAL BLACK HISTORY PROGRAM – Saturday, Feb. 23, 5:30 p.m. This year’s program carries the theme “The Great Black Migration,” and includes a special tribute to Aretha Franklin, the late singer and “Queen of Soul.” New Life Fellowship Church auditorium, 1310 Clegg St. Free.

ANNUAL GOSPEL HOUR – Sunday, Feb. 24, 4 p.m. A number of local churches will participate in this popular celebration of gospel music. Petaluma Christian Church, 1160 Schuman Lane. Free.

DR. MARTHA C. TAYLOR: Lecture – Sunday, March 3, at 2 p.m. The author of “From Labor to Reward,” Dr. Taylor is an expert on the religious experiences of black Americans in the Bay Area from 1849 to the 1970s. Escaping the restrictions and dangers of the segregated south, many folks came west, only to find a similar set of obstacles here in Northern California. Free. At the museum.

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