- February 21, 2017
When a some young black kids who were hanging around the old Walmart were allegedly being harassed by police, a group of African-Americans -- including James Sharpe Jr. -- sought a place to rent for the kids to play games. Ultimately, that renting space became the African American Cultural Society, which celebrated its 25-year anniversary on Sunday, Oct. 23, at Matanzas High School.
For two and a half decades, the AACS has stood as one of Flagler County’s most prolific institutions in enhancing African-African culture. Filled with historic artifacts, tribal masks and photos of some of the most renown African-Americans, the AACS has lived up to its mission, which is “to preserve and perpetuate the cultural heritage of African Americans through social, educational, artistic and intellectual activities.”
To continue its rich history of anniversary guest speakers, the AACS called upon congressional candidate Val Demings -- the first female to hold the position of Chief of the Orlando Police Department -- to provide the keynote speech. In the past, the Susan Taylor, Editorial Director of Essence Magazine, U.N. Ambassador Andrew Young and Dr. Howard Dodson, Director of the Moorland-Spingarn Research Center and Howard University Libraries, spoke at previous anniversary celebrations.
AACS board member and 25th anniversary Chairperson Stephanie Robinson has been with the organization for 24 years. Robinson says her best moments from over the years was celebrating at the AACS’s election night watch when President Barack Obama was elected president in 2008, the mortgage-burning party when the $380,000 mortgage was paid off early, and assisting with yesterday’s anniversary event.
“We’re looking forward to getting more youth and young adults involved,” Robinson said. “We need someone to carry on, when we can no longer carry on.”
For membership information, call 447-7030.
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