January 10 - January 23, 2013


champion services travel - group travel

Z Gospel and Z Go-Go: The New Face of Fitness!

kennedra tucker z-gospel“Down, Down Up. Down, Down Up,” members and non-members of Purity Baptist Church shouted to fitness instructors as they performed three squats in a row and returned to a standing position while getting down to R&B artist Ciara’s “Gimme Dat.”

From the youngest participant, a seven-year-old, to the oldest, my 90-year-old grandmother, the Z Gospel class exercises drenched everyone in the room with sweat.  And at the door, some would be participants came to see what the fuss was about and hoped to get enough courage to move and groove to Kirk Franklin’s “Before I Die.”

What is Z Gospel?  It is a new fitness craze sweeping the nation tied to the popularity of Zumba, which has sparked millions of people to get off their bottoms and move and groove to funky Latin rhythms. Some regular Zumba attendees have been inspired to attend training, get licensed and start teaching Zumba in their own communities.  Danette Tucker, my sister, is one such instructor. After getting her license, she began creating her own routines to her favorite music genre and DC’s favorite, Go-Go.  She discovered that others loved dancing to Go-Go as much as she did and developed her own flavor of class, Z Go-Go.               

z-gospel“Much like Beto, the creator of Zumba, we’ve taken our love for our favorite genres of music, Gospel and Go-Go, and incorporated them into our faith and love for the Lord, all to inspire a dance fitness program that is fun, exciting and a fellowship,” says Danette. “Oh! And by the way, we just so happen to be working out while building a sisterhood that will hold us together spiritually as well as physically. It’s truly a blessing," she added.

Joining Danette and myself at Purity is our mother, Cynthia. Aside from breaking to care for her children, she has acted on her passion for fitness for a long time. Mom is not only a retired federal government worker, but a licensed Zumba instructor who calls teaching Z Gospel one of her post-retirement accomplishments.

Full Story | Your Comment

POH Welcomes New Contributor

kennedra tuckerPOH welcomes our newest regular contributor, Kennedra Tucker. Tucker first wrote for us while she was in high school in 2001. Her article, “Hip-Hop Reflections” appeared in the November 2001 – April 2002 print issue. We found her when she competed in the annual NAACP ACTSO contest. Read her newest article, "Z Gospel and Z Go-Go: The New Face of Fitness!" (the lead article for this issue)

More on Other Contributors:   See our list of contributors, learn more about them, see what events they are participating in or hosting, and e-mail them.  You can also see the articles they have written for Port Of Harlem and some they have written for others. 

“American Promise” Heads to Sundance Film Festival

American Promise

Point of View says it’s thrilled to announce that American Promise by Joe Brewster and Michèle Stephenson has been selected for the U.S. Documentary Competition at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival,January 17-27 in Utah. 

American Promise follows two middle-class African-American families as they help their sons navigate an elite, private education from kindergarten through graduation, illustrating struggles of identity and stereotypes while ultimately exposing the complexities of the stark achievement gap faced by African-American boys throughout the country.

back to the top

Fo' Mo' Forward
Congratulations President
Barack Obama 2012

As first things first
Are but second to none
The unfinished-business of
America is priority-one.

In victory over-defeat, thru
A seed of change by choice
In the midst of the moment
It's time to stop and rejoice.

Four-more forward is a
Hi-five, victory-celebration
With cautious-optimism
But overjoyed, jubilation.

On the wings of the wind
With both feet on the ground
The best is yet to come
The second-term around.

Thru ups and downs
Luv-joy, pain and tears
It's all signed, sealed and
Delivered, for four more years.

Regardless of the Tea-party
And the do-nothin' party of “No”
With faith in the future, we're
"Fired-up and ready to go!"

In victory over-defeat, thru
A seed of change by choice
In the midst of the moment
It's time to stop and rejoice.

Four-more forward, thru
A perfect storm therein
Was a vote of confidence
For a second-term win.

Thru ups and downs
Luv-joy, pain and tears
It's all signed, sealed and
Delivered, for fo' mo' years.

On the wings of the wind
With both feet on the ground
The best is yet to come
The second-time around.

Fo’ Mo’ Forward!

Glaucoma Cases Among African Americans To Increase 66 Percent by 2030

glaucoma and african americans
A scene as it might be viewed by a person
with glaucoma.

As you and your loved ones watch the dawning of 2013, everyone is hopeful of what the new year will bring—reunions, graduations, marriages and other fun family occasions. January is Glaucoma Awareness Month. Make seeing your best a part of your new beginning by doing what you can to make sure your eyes are healthy. If you are African American age 40 or older or have a family history of glaucoma, put learning more about this disease on your resolution list for the new year.

There has been a steady rise in glaucoma among the African American community. Currently, more than 520,000 African Americans have glaucoma, and the National Eye Institute (NEI) of the National Institutes of Health projects this number will rise to approximately 865,000 cases by 2030, a 66 percent increase. African Americans have the highest prevalence of glaucoma among minority groups. Last year, NEI invested $71 million on a wide range of studies to understand causes and potential areas of treatment for glaucoma.

Glaucoma is a group of diseases that can damage the optic nerve of the eye and result in vision loss and blindness. Primary open-angle glaucoma is the most common form. In this condition, fluid builds up in the front chamber of the eye and the optic nerve is damaged by the resulting increase in eye pressure.

“Glaucoma affects more than 2.7 million people nationwide and is a leading cause of vision loss and blindness in African Americans. In fact, African Americans are at risk of developing it at an earlier age than other racial and ethnic groups,” said Dr. James Tsai, chair of the Glaucoma Subcommittee for the NEI National Eye Health Education Program. “Primary open-angle glaucoma often has no early symptoms. However, as the disease progresses, a person may eventually notice his or her side vision decreasing. If the disease is left untreated, the field of vision narrows and vision loss may result,” he continued. 

“Studies show that at least half of all persons with glaucoma don’t know they have this potentially blinding eye disease,” said NEI director Dr. Paul Sieving. “The good news is that glaucoma can be detected in its early stages through a comprehensive dilated eye exam. NEI encourages all people at higher risk of glaucoma—African Americans age 40 or older; everyone age 60, especially Mexican Americans; and those with a family history—to get a dilated eye exam every one to two years, because early detection and timely treatment may save your sight.”

During a comprehensive dilated eye exam, drops are placed in your eyes to dilate, or widen, the pupils. This allows your eye care professional to see inside your eye and examine the optic nerve for signs of glaucoma and other vision problems. A test for eye pressure alone is not enough to detect glaucoma. “It’s very important that people don’t wait until they notice a problem with their vision to have an eye exam,” adds Dr. Tsai.

If you have Medicare, are African American age 50 or older, have diabetes, or have a family history of glaucoma, you may be eligible for a low-cost, comprehensive dilated eye exam through the glaucoma benefit. Visit Medicare or call 1–800–MEDICARE for more information. To find out about other possible financial assistance for eye care, visit NEI Financial Aid.

It’s a new year, so make sure you and your family start it off right. Keep vision in your future. For more information about glaucoma, visit NEI or call NEI at 301–496–5248.

back to the top

advertise in port of harlem

Things to Do


National Symphony Orchestra in DC Neighborhoods 2013
U Street, Howard University, Shaw and Logan Circle
Tue, Jan, 8 - Mon, Jan 14, free

MLK Program
National Museum of Natural History
10th and Constitution
Washington, DC
Fri, Jan 18, 7p-9p, free

MLK Day: In Honor of a Dream!
Annmarie Sculpture Garden & Arts Center
13480 Dowell Road
Dowell, MD
Mon, Jan. 21, 10a-5p, free

Dallas, TX

A Tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Meyerson Symphony Center
2501 Flora
Sun, Jan 20, 7:30p, $15-$30

New York City and New Jersey

The Harlem Fine Arts Show - Newark
The Prudential Center
25 Lafayette Street
Newark, New Jersey
Thu, Jan 10, 6p–9p, $50

Peter Wayne Lewis
Paintings from the Middle Earth Part IV

Skoto Gallery
529 West 20th Street, 5FL
New York
Thu, Jan 17- Sat, Feb 23
General Hours: Tue-Sat, 11a-6p, free

Library of Congress Summer Teacher Institute Applications

The application for the Library of Congress Summer Teacher Institute is now available. The five-day institute provides educators with tools and resources to effectively integrate primary sources into the K-12 classroom.

Teachers and school librarians of all grade levels and curriculum areas are encouraged to apply.
Tuition and materials are provided at no cost to participants. Breakfast and lunch are also provided. However, participants are responsible for transportation to and from the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. and any required overnight accommodations. Interested participants have the option of completing additional requirements (and paying a fee) to earn three graduate credits from George Mason University.

   Mon-Fri June 10-14
   Mon-Fri June 17-21
   Mon-Fri July 22-26
   Mon-Fri July 29-August 2
   Mon-Fri August 5-9

The application deadline is February 4, 2013.

back to the top

National Gallery of Art Just Released Internship Applications

The 2013-2014 call for applications for National Gallery of Art internships is now available on the Gallery's Web site. The Gallery offers three different internships, each having different projects, eligibility requirements, and terms. 

alvin ailey 2013

back to the top

TO CHANGE YOUR E-MAIL ADDRESS:  Click "SafeUnsubscribe" below, then
click here to register your new address