port of harlem magazine

February 21 - March 6, 2013


ivan brown realty

Are You at Risk for Shingles?

barbara walters and whoopi goldbergChildhood diseases can hit adults and when they do, they often strike with a vengeance. Barbara Walters learned that this year when doctors discovered that she has chicken pox. “She'd never had it as a child. So now she's been told to rest, she's not allowed any visitors — and we're telling you, Barbara, no scratching!," said her The View cohost Whoopi Goldberg.  After having chicken pox, 83-year-old Walters in now a risk of contracting shingles.

If you have ever had chicken pox, then you are at risk for developing shingles.  Varicella zoster virus (VZV) is the virus that causes chicken pox and shingles.  Following recovery from chicken pox, the virus becomes dormant in the body.  When shingles develop, a rash or blisters appear on the skin, generally on one side of the body.  This is a sign that the virus that was asleep in the nerve cells has reactivated and travelled from the nerve out to the skin.  Shingles (also known as herpes zoster) can occur in people of all ages and the risk increases as you get older.

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champion services travel - group travel

Henry V at Folger Theater

henry v

My going to see a Shakespearean play was out of my comfort zone until I saw Henry V at Folger Theater.   Sure, the play was steep in European history, but the drama, light comedic storytelling and very creative use of sound effects and lighting made this an outstanding adventure.

The story centers on English King Henry V’s desire to conquer France.  The tale is a reminder that Europeans have their share of tribal warfare, too. 

To create the illusion of the king riding a horse, they use modified carpenter horses pushed onto stage and a soundman using wood blocks to mimic a horse’s gallop. To experience this and other illusions was worth my time.  The illusion created to hang people throughout the play was something I wouldn’t want to participate in if I was an actor (just in case something failed to work properly).  However, the impression seemed magical from my spectator’s seat.

Photo:  King Henry (Zach Appelman, top) leads his men in the Battle of Agincourt. Photo taken by Scott Suchman.

Tracing Your Caribbean Ancestors

Guy Grannum, formerly of the London National Archives, has released Tracing Your Caribbean Ancestors, a book that helps readers use indexes and genealogy websites and to locate where to look for information at the London Archives. 

The London Archives holds records for many people who lived in British West Indian colonies including plantation owners and their human property, soldiers, sailors, transported criminals and emigrants. It also holds colonial office records - document such as state correspondence to and from the West Indian colonies - and passenger lists.  

Grannum, who is of Bajan and English ancestry, also owns Caribbean Roots,  which he established in early 2007 to encourage and promote research into Caribbean genealogy, identity and heritage. It aims to do this by providing guidance through the website, articles and workshops.


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Ashé to Amen: African Americans and Biblical Imagery in NY

Ashé to Amen: African Americans and Biblical Imagery is on view at the New York Museum of Biblical Arts (MOBIA).  The exhibit runs through Sunday, May 26 and then moves to Baltimore and Memphis.

The exhibit includes an array of styles and media including carvings, mixed media, paints and fiber works.  It features the works of 19th, 20th, and 21st century masters and folk artists including William H. Johnson, Edmonia Lewis, Charles White and Sister Gertrude Morgan.  Among the contemporary artists in the exhibit are José Mapily, Carl Clark, Adejoke Tugbiyele, Carmen De Lavallade, Jonathan Green and David Driskill.

After closing at MOBIA, the exhibit appears Saturday, June 22 – Sunday, September 29 at the Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture in Baltimore and Sunday, October 20, 2013 - Sunday, January 5, 2014 at the Dixon Gallery and Gardens in Memphis, Tennessee.

MOBIA is also exhibiting Reaching Out: American Bible Society and the African American Community. Reaching Out traces American Bible Society’s relationship with the African-American community built through Bible publication and distribution.  Entrance into MOBIA is free and open 10a-6p, Tuesday to Sunday, 1865 Broadway at 61st Street, New York.

POHGEP Exceeds Goal

gambia map


The Port Of Harlem Gambian Education Partnership (POGHEP) has exceeded its goal of raising $2,050 to carry out several projects in The Gambia.  “The amount may not seem much to many Americans to complete a project, but it will go a long way in The Gambia,” added Ida Jones, POHGEP board member who has visited the West African country.

However, POHGEP is still short of only $200 to repair the roof at Secca Memorial and $75 to develop promotional brochures for the Baobab Youth Development Association. 

You can join the effort with a donation via PayPal or traditional mail.

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ivan brown realty

Things to Do

Baltimore/Washington, DC

Musical Roots: From Africa to America
Baltimore Symphony Orchestra
Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall
Baltimore, MD
Feb 27, 10a and 11:30a, $

72 Years of Fighting for the Vote
Learn more about how women's right to vote was won after a 72-year fight, involving three generations of women.  Enjoy a not-to-be-missed panel of experts moderated by Ann Lewis, Chair of the Commission on Celebrating Women's History and Counsel to President Bill Clinton.
The George Washington University Lisner Auditorium
21st at H Streets, NW
Washington, DC
Sat, Mar 2, 11a -12:30p, free

Dissonance Dance Theatre
Intersections:  A New America Festival
Atlas Performing Arts Center
1333 H Street NE
Sat,  Mar 2, 9:30p, $30/$15
Sun,  Mar 3, 5p, $25/$15
For ages 8+

New York (Greater)

The Harlem Chamber Players and Friends
5th Annual Black History Month Celebration
St. Mary's Episcopal Church
521 West 126th Street
New York
Sun, Feb 24, 3p, $10 (seniors) $15

sister rosetta tharpe

Sister Rosetta Tharpe

The Godmother of Rock & Roll
Premieres Fri, Feb 22, 9p on PBS (check local listings)

Underground Railroad Free Press Accepting Nominations

The Underground Railroad Free Press is accepting nominations for its 2013 awards. The prizes are the most esteemed honor bestowed in the Underground Railroad community. The purpose of the Underground Railroad Free Press prizes is to recognize and honor the most outstanding contributions to contemporary Underground Railroad work in leadership, preservation and advancement of knowledge.

The prizes also promote awareness and appreciation of contemporary Underground Railroad work to the general public, elected and other officials, governments and key decision-makers by publicizing prizes and winners. As the prizes recognize that the Underground Railroad was an international enterprise, prize eligibility is extended to individual and organizational nominees from any nation.

Click here for more information and nomination forms.  Nominations close Sunday, June 30, 2013.

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New Specialty Food
Information Source

The National Association for the Specialty Food Trade releases updates on new specialty food items on the market every month.  From their site you can learn of new, best-selling, gift and holiday, and natural and organic food products

Washington hosted one of last year’s trade shows, The Fancy Food Festival.  For snippets on several of the Black producers from around the African world, including Brazil and The Gambia, who participated in the Fancy Food Festival visit POHSnippets YouTube channel.


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