By Matthew Lewis, Contributing Reporter
DELRAY BEACH, FLORIDA – The Spady Cultural Heritage Museum in Delray Beach is more proud than ever to commemorate Juneteenth. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, they are recognizing the date this year with the “Porch Stories: A Juneteenth Celebration!” video, in partnership with Delray Beach Public Library (DBPL).
The video skit will illustrate why and how Juneteenth is celebrated, with Spady Museum Director Charlene Farrington and Tammeric Itson Scurry, children’s librarian at the Delray Beach Public Library. Mael Dieudonne, age eight, plays “Flash” in the skit, a young resident who is just learning about Juneteenth.
Sarah Figgie, Head of Children’s Services for DBPL, said, “The Delray Beach Public Library Children’s Department certainly creates programming geared toward children but, we also hope all of our programming will be interesting and informative for anyone of any age.”
“We strive to offer programs that celebrate community,” Figgie said. “To create interest to learn more about a topic or event, bring families together, spark curiosity and finally to entertain and have fun.”
Adding, “We hope as many people as possible watch our Porch Stories Juneteenth Celebration as we are very proud to collaborate with a cultural gem like the Spady Museum. Delray Beach is lucky to have a resource such as the museum right here in the heart of the community.”
Although this year’s Juneteenth celebration will be virtual, the Spady Museum plans to resume its in-person celebrations next year with the return of Pat “Mother Blues” Cohen, who was originally scheduled to entertain us this year, as part of a collaboration with the Arts Garage.
Over the years, the Spady Museum has created several ways for South Florida residents to recognize Juneteenth’s importance – from performances by nationally known artists to moving readings by local talent. The Spady Museum’s YouTube channel will also have a ‘behind the scenes’ of the taping.
The Spady Cultural Heritage Museum is dedicated to discovering, collecting and sharing the African-American history and heritage of Palm Beach County. It has become a destination for people of all cultures seeking information about Florida’s early black communities and culture.
Located in the former home of the late Solomon D. Spady, the most prominent African American educator and community leader in Delray Beach from 1922 to 1957, the museum opened in July 2001 and is the only Black History Museum and Cultural Center of its kind in Palm Beach County.