Roswell Roots is one of the largest and most comprehensive Black History celebrations in the state of Georgia.
“I hope that these events and programs will once again bring out a broad cross-section of participants from across the metro,” said Morgan Timmis, the city’s historic and cultural events manager.
“The idea behind this 13-year-old festival is to not only celebrate the accomplishments of black America within the African American community, but to bring together everyone in shared experiences that entertain, educate and build social capital in our community.”
This year’s Roots Festival includes some new and very exciting programs, Timmis said. “I’m particularly excited to see the documentary film about our poetry slam which was filmed at that event last year. Called ‘3 Minute Activists: The Soul of Slam,’ we’re screening it at the Aurora Cineplex on Feb. 12.”
The film was produced by Gabrielle Pickle and Roswell Arts Commission member Lee Walker. It was written, produced, and directed by Michael H. Harper.
Lee has adopted the Slam as one of his favorite Roswell events and he contributes to the prize money as well, which has enabled the festival organizers to draw even more great artists to the competition.
“We’re also bringing nationally recognized photographer Sheila Pree Bright’s work to Barrington Hall. The month-long exhibition, titled Invisible Suburbia, spotlights middle-class African-American suburban homes, a lifestyle that Bright contends is nearly invisible in the mainstream media.”
Seven large-scale photographs will be on view in the house. The idea came from Roots Steering Committee member and writer Sally Hansell, owner of Mimosa Hall.
“Black Heritage: The Unsung Heroes of Roswell, Georgia” will be on view all month at city hall in the rotunda. The exhibit of photographs, artifacts and textiles highlights the history of African Americans in the Roswell area and their influence and impact on the community since 1839.
The new exhibit was created in partnership with the Roswell Historical Society. “This is a long overdue in-depth look at the amazing history of this community,” Timmis said.
A list of all of the Roswell Roots events can be found at www.roswellroots.com.