“In recognizing the humanity of our fellow beings, we pay ourselves the highest tribute,” said Thurgood Marshall, a native Baltimorean and the first American-American justice to serve on the Supreme Court.
This Black History Month, Baltimore will honor Justice Marshall and other members of the African-American community during its first-ever Baltimore Legends & Legacies Jubilee. The free event, hosted by Visit Baltimore and greiBo Entertainment, will feature exhibits and activities from some of Baltimore’s leading cultural institutions, including the Maryland Zoo, the National Aquarium and The Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History & Culture.
“We thought it was so important to recognize the contributions of the African American community to Baltimore and to highlight the city’s African American heritage,” says Visit Baltimore CEO Al Hutchinson, when asked about the inspiration behind the Baltimore Legends & Legacies Jubilee.
According to Hutchinson, Visit Baltimore has spent several months developing the Legends & Legacies event into a fun-filled, family-friendly event. At the Jubilee, guests will have the opportunity to learn about a variety of historical topics and events—from the first African American-owned shipyard to the Civil Rights Movement.
The event will feature numerous interactive activities including themed arts and crafts lessons, storytelling and other games. Some highlights include Frederick Douglass and Harriet Tubman reenactors, a “Travel to Ethiopia” art project sponsored by the Waters Art Museum and a chance to meet and mingle with African penguins from the Maryland Zoo.
Food enthusiasts can enjoy complimentary samplings from Terra Café and The Land of Kush, as well as desert samplings courtesy of Berries by Quicha. The Morgan State University Choir will perform, and Mayor Catherine E. Pugh will make an appearance at the opening ceremony.
Visit Baltimore hopes that the event will spark continued interest in the city and its cultural history. Hutchinson notes that interested visitors can purchase a Legends and Legacies Heritage Pass, which will allow them to explore Baltimore’s African-American history in greater depth. Heritage Pass holders gain admission to The National Great Blacks in Wax Museum, Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History & Culture and the Frederick Douglass-Isaac Myers Maritime Park at a discounted rate.
The Baltimore Legends and Legacies Jubilee will take place at the newly-renovated Baltimore Visitors Center, located in the Inner Harbor. The festivities will begin at noon on Saturday, February 18 and end at 4pm the same day. In the case of inclement weather, the date of the event will be Saturday, February 25.
Though this is the city’s first Baltimore Legends & Legacies Jubilee, Hutchinson hopes that it will not be its last: “We think it will be a great, and we hope to see the event continue into the future.”