Every February during Black History Month North Texans celebrate the achievements of African Americans. On Wednesday, Eastfield College in Mesquite hoped to educate and inspire a new generation through a tribute to writers and artists from the 1920s Harlem Renaissance.
"The entire world looked at what is going on in Harlem, so the Renaissance is a celebrated era were African Americans were actually spotlighted," said Brynndah Hicks Turnbo from Eastfield College. "As a result of that, you had this boom, you had this bust of art, music, dance [and] thriving businesses."
Willene Luper, who is a Dallas teacher, did not know much about the Harlem Renaissance but said she left the read-in inspired.
"Everybody has that one somebody that they love, that they can look up to and so every time we explore this topic, you just find one other person that you love," said Luper.
Eastfield’s read-in program has been one of the college’s biggest Black History Month traditions for the last 22 years. It’s part of a national initiative to get people of all ages and cultures to read more.
"It's just always going to be important to pick up a book—a physical book— and to read," said Hicks Turnbo.
The college said it hopes the celebration doesn’t just last this week, or this month, but for generations to come.