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Black History Month

In February the City of Barrie celebrates Black History Month with events that bring awareness to the significant contributions that African-Canadians have and continue to make to the cultural landscape of our country and our community.

The City of Barrie is proud to support Black History Month programming and initiatives taking place in the community. If you have programming that you would like added to this list, please email to have it added.

2020 Programming

January &

Making Change Through Art
Grades 1–12, Across Simcoe County

Making Change invited students to participate in a community Art Engagement Project. The project encourages students to:

  • Explore and celebrate the past and present contributions of Black Canadians;
  • Reflect on how we can overcome racism and discrimination by making change;
  • Create their expressions of making positive change through art, dance, music, theatre; and,
  • Share their creations in the community during Black History Month.

In March, art work will be displayed in the Barrie City Hall Rotunda. Presented by Making Change.

Thurs. Feb. 13
11am–2 pm
Sandbox Centre
24 Maple Ave, 2nd Floor

Voices of Black Women in Business
Keynote, Panel & Lunch
Tickets: $15/person (includes lunch)

Diversity and inclusion. Two terms that all businesses need to be thinking about or begin to think about when it comes to moving the dial forward for growth and success. This is an experiential business panel focused on how to include diversity in the workplace. Five Black women professionals share their contributions to their respective fields and ideas to attract diverse talent to Simcoe County. Presented by Making Change.

Partners: Barrie Chamber of Commerce, Sandbox Centre, Henry Bernick Entrepreneurship Centre, & XcelerateHER

Sun. Feb. 16
MacLaren Art Centre
37 Mulcaster St, Rotary Education Centre

Celebrate Black History Month with the MacLaren Art Centre
Admission: $5 per child / free for MacLaren Members (Family Category)
Registration required: Sign up in person at 1pm on the day of the workshop, as space is limited.

Under the guidance of regional artist Sean George, families will be led through an engaging workshop exploring the history, function, vibrant colours and patterns of Kente cloth! Families will work together using colourful paper strips, sharpies, and yarn to create a bold original Kente inspired design. Ideal for children ages 3 to 8 years old.

Mon. Feb. 24
Barrie Public Library Downtown Branch
60 Worsley St, Gathering Place

Community Conversations: Better Together
Free event, everyone welcome.

Global citizen and thought leader Titi Akinsanmi shares her perspectives, experiences and ideas central to connecting and building community. Aligning with Black History Month - honouring the contributions of Black Canadians, past and present, we explore the concept of "better together", or ubuntu, a catalyst to inclusion.            

For more information on Community Conversations visit Our Mosaic Lives. Watch Community Conversations on Rogers TV

Sat. Feb. 29
6–10 pm 
Five Points Theatre
1 Dunlop St W

Making Change Black History Month Celebration
Tickets: $20 per person, includes food & entertainment. Cash Bar.

Showcasing speakers, artists, musicians and poets from across Simcoe County. Featuring: “Black & Blues” a ‘60s Blues and R & B review with The Feelin’ Good Band; “Sketches of Black Music” narrates the development and evolution of Black music in the United States through live performance and poetry with musicians Gwyn Beaver and Shawn Pitre; singer-songwriter Cassandra Amanyangole, and more to be announced. Presented by Making Change.

Partners: City of Barrie, Office of the Mayor, YMCA of Simcoe Muskoka Immigrant Services


Mayor Jeff Lehman has issued a proclamation, naming February 2020 Black History Month in Barrie:

Mayor’s Office - "Committed to Service Excellence"

I, Jeff Lehman, Mayor of the City of Barrie hereby proclaim
February 1-29, 2020asBlack History Month
WHEREAS; As Barrie’s population becomes increasingly more diverse, “Making Change Across Simcoe County” encourages our community to recognize Black History Month as an opportunity to embrace diversity and foster inclusion; and
WHEREAS;  Black History Month is a time to learn about the stories and many important contributions of local Black Canadians to the settlement, growth and development of Simcoe County, and about the diversity of Black communities in Canada and their importance to the history of this country; and
WHEREAS;  During Black History Month, Canadians celebrate the many achievements and contributions of Black Canadians who have and continue to do so much to make Canada the culturally diverse, nation it is today.
THEREFORE, I, Jeff Lehman, Mayor of the City of Barrie, do hereby proclaim the month of February 2020 as “Black History Month.”

- Jeff Lehman, Mayor of the City of BARRIE

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